Arizona State’s 2017 season still remains over two months away, but there’s still plenty of reason to be paying attention to Sun Devil baseball right now.
Arizona State opened up their preseason slate Tuesday night in a scrimmage against Central Arizona College, and while the Sun Devils’ loss won’t count toward their overall record in February, the game surely mattered to many recruits and prospects who will compete for a spot in the lineup come spring.
Here’s what we saw from a few members of the No. 1 recruiting class in the country Saturday night:
Hunter Bishop - Outfielder, San Carlos, Calif. / Junipero Serra High School
Bishop is coming into 2016 as an Under Armor All-American and the No. 44 MLB Draft prospect, so suffice it to say, there are high expectations for the 18-year-old.
In a game where the Sun Devils struggled to produce much at the plate, Bishop seemed to be one of the only bright spots offensively. Bishop went 1-for-4 on the night with a double, a walk and two strikeouts. His double was a hard hit line drive into the left field corner and he showed decent speed on the base-path, beating out the relay to second.
However, Bishop struggled a bit in the outfield, misreading a couple of fly balls that fell in front of him on a hop. The San Carlos native is still a tremendous athlete though, (a former preferred walk-on for the University of Washington football program) and should develop into a solid piece for ASU head coach Tracy Smith to rotate in the outfield come the regular season.
Sam Ferri - C/RHP, Norridge, Ill. / Notre Dame College Prep
A rare two-way player that can catch behind the plate and eat up innings on the mound, Ferri had a solid performance in his first game as a Sun Devil. The freshman went 1-for-4 at the plate with a double, scored a run and threw a runner out from behind the plate. Ferri will most likely only play catcher for the Sun Devils this season, however, and his defensive capabilities will surely allow him to compete for a spot in February.
Spencer Van Scoyoc - LHP/OF, Cedar Rapids, Iowa / Thomas Jefferson High School
Van Scoyoc may be one of the most exciting prospects for the Sun Devils this season. Another two way player, Van Scoyoc is coming in as the number-one ranked left-handed pitcher in the country, and Tracy Smith has stated he has the potential to be a middle of the order hitter by the time conference play starts.
The Iowa native struggled in his first game Tuesday night, allowing one earned run and giving up a walk, but also struck out his last batter to get out of the inning. He didn’t get an at-bat against Central Arizona, but look for him to get mixed into the lineup soon enough.
Jacob Godfrey - RHP, New Lenox, Ill. / Providence Catholic HS / Northwestern Florida State College
Godfrey has pitched a good amount of innings in college baseball already, posting a 7-1 record in 21 games with LSU in 2015 and appearing in nine games with Northwestern Florida State last year, where he posted a 2.29 ERA in 39.1 innings. Tracy Smith was vocal about his desire to stray away from junior college prospects in the offseason, but also admitted he could “compete for a pot in the weekend rotation immediately.” In his one inning on the mound, Godfrey allowed three hits and one earned run, but struck three out and showed impressive command with his fastball.