Sun Devil baseball opens their 2017 season tonight at Phoenix Muni against Northwestern. While Tracy Smith’s team looks to build on their 36-23 record from last season, we’re looking at five Devils to keep an eye on this season.
A freshman from San Mateo, CA (Hunter Bishop) attended the same school that produced Sun Devil great Barry Bonds
Eder Erives, RHP
The senior finished 2016 with a 6-2 record, 10 saves, and 2.95 ERA, earning an Honorable Mention spot on the Pac-12 All Conference list. He was recently named to the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Award watch list, given to the nation’s top closer. The last Sun Devil named to the preseason watch list was Ryan Burr in 2014.
Andrew Shaps, OF
Perfectgame.org named Shaps, a junior, to their preseason All-Conference team. In 212 at-bats in 2016, Shaps hit .321, second best on the team—with 2 homeruns, 27 RBI, and 29 runs scored. As a freshman, he also pitched in 7 games, striking out 11 and allowing a paltry .063 batting average.
Hunter Bishop, OF
A freshman from San Mateo, CA he attended the same school that produced Sun Devil great Barry Bonds, along with former USC football coach John Robinson, NFL Hall of Famer Lynn Swann, and some guy named Tom Brady. As a senior at Serra High School, Bishop hit .426 with 10 stolen bases and didn’t commit an error in the field in his 32 games played.
Connor Higgins, LHP
The big sophomore (6’5”, 240 lbs) only saw action in 13 innings as a freshman last season, but struck out 10 in 12.2 innings, and was named the 35th best MLB prospect in his class. As a senior at Parkland High School (Orefield, Pa.), he didn’t allow an earned run all season.
Carter Aldrete, INF
Perfectgame.org had him rated as the 12th best high school player in California and #93 overall nationwide, and was a 37th round draft pick of the Red Sox last summer. Aldrete’s father, Rich, and his Uncle Mike both played for the San Francisco Giants, and his sister Annie currently plays softball at Cal.
Check out Episode 1 of the 2017 Edition of Skip’s Scoop now!