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Baseball players to watch in 2014

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Brady Acker

Atholton, senior, center fielder

This returning All-Metro first-team pick batted .478 with 22 stolen bases last season and led the Raiders to the Howard County title. He has signed a letter of intent to continue his career at George Mason.

Danny Blair

Gilman, junior, center fielder-pitcher

The power-hitting center fielder batted .356, with four home runs, five triples and 46 runs scored last season. This year, the hard-throwing left-hander also will add pitching to his repertoire. He has committed to play at South Carolina.

Nick Delp

Calvert Hall, junior, pitcher-third baseman

Delp was 7-2 with a 2.27 ERA as a sophomore for the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference champions, and was one out away from a perfect game against Archbishop Curley in the playoffs. He is a returning All-Metro second-team selection and member of this year's preseason All-State team.

Cody Morris

Reservoir, junior, pitcher

This fire-balling, 6-foot-5 right-hander was 7-2 with a 1.40 ERA last season while throwing in the low-to-mid 90s. The South Carolina commit also features an above average curveball and changeup.

Zack Ridgely

Archbishop Curley, senior, pitcher-outfielder

This hard-throwing left-hander can touch 90 mph with his fastball, and last year struck out 59 batters in 42 innings. Committed to Radford, Ridgely also batted .385 with 11 doubles and seven stolen bases.

Manny Rodriguez

Calvert Hall, senior, second baseman-pitcher

Rodriguez hit .469 last season for the MIAA A Conference champions after batting .474 as a sophomore. He also became a starting pitcher near the end of last season, going 3-0, including a win in the championship series against Gilman. He has received interest from several colleges, but also might be a Major League Baseball draft prospect.

Gavin Sheets

Gilman, senior, pitcher-infielder

The son of former Orioles outfielder and Gilman coach Larry Sheets batted .425 with 19 doubles, four homers and 34 RBIs a year ago to earn All-Metro first-team honors. He also won nine games as a pitcher, and will continue his career at Wake Forest.

Brian Shaffer

North Harford, senior, pitcher

This 6-foot-4 right-hander combined a strong fastball with effective off-speed pitches to post an ERA just over 1.00 last season. The preseason All-State pick has signed with Maryland.

Peter Solomon

Mount St. Joseph, senior, pitcher-outfielder

This Notre Dame recruit went 6-1 with 69 strikeouts in 522/3 innings on the mound last season to earn All-Metro first-team honors. He also produced at the plate, with 27 hits and 14 RBIs, and is a preseason All-State selection.

Troy Stokes

Calvert Hall, senior, center fielder

A speedster with power, Stokes batted .340 last season with 17 extra-base hits and 19 stolen bases. He already ranks as the program’s second all-time leader in steals, and will continue his career at Maryland, if he doesn't turn pro. He is also a member of this year's preseason All-State team.

Other notables:

Kenny Armiger, St. Mary's

Jack Barry, Reservoir

Kyle Canavan, South River

Jordan Carr, Archbishop Spalding

Devin Conroy, Dulaney

Stetson Cox, Loyola

Joey Dinoto, Loyola

Paul Diven, Archbishop Spalding

John Drexel, Chesapeake-AA

Austin Edwards, Westminster

Kurtis Ewers, Dulaney

Phil Frazier, Atholton

Chris Girken, Loyola

Cody Gwinn, Eastern Tech

Christian Hamel, Archbishop Curley

Nic Hammer, North Harford

John Klein, Catonsville

Jon Lane, Archbishop Spalding

Syeed Mahdi, Arundel

Christian Marciano, Severn

Brandon Martin, Westminster

Isaiah Pasteur, Winters Mill

Darrien Ragins, Archbishop Spalding

Keifer Rawlings, St. Paul's

Chris Ruszin, Chesapeake-AA

Chase Sankovich, Westminster

William Seiferth, Glenelg Country

Craig Sheridan, South River

Tyler Silbersack, Franklin

Michael Slayton, Atholton

Drew Spinnenweber, Chesapeake-AA

Andy Szamski, Eastern Tech

Jamal Wade, St. Paul's

Ryan Whittington, Catonsville

Elliott Zoellner, St. Mary's

(A previous version of this story included an image of a player misidentified as Danny Blair. The Sun regrets the error.)

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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