Here's a little more info on the Orioles' No. 2 pick, pitcher/shortstop Mychal Givens from Tampa. The kid throws 97, but Orioles director of amateur scouting Joe Jordan said last night that the organization views him as a shortstop.
Givens led the Panthers of H.B. Plant High School to the Class 5A state tournament this spring, going 8-4 with a 1.71 ERA and 113 strikeouts in 78 IP. He also led the Panthers with a .374 average, four homers and 31 RBIs.
He entered the draft as the 46th-ranked overall prospect in the draft by Baseball America, that after being one of the nation's top high school prospects the summer before his senior year. He was the MVP of the Under Armour All-American Game at Wrigley Field last summer
and he played in the Aflac All-American Game at Dodger Stadium. He was also awarded the 2008 Jackie Robinson Award, given to the top rising senior high school player in the country.
He slipped in the draft because apparently some were concerned with his ability to hit as a pro as well as his three-quarters arm slot, but Plant coach Dennis Braun said last week that Givens is the same prospects scouts fell in love with as a junior. He added that Givens
relied on his fastball -- which peaks at 97 -- instead of breaking balls.
"It's unfortunate because when you reach a certain level, everyone wants to break you down," Braun said. "One of the problems is that no one knows whether he's a shortstop of a pitcher. I guarantee that whoever takes him will have the most protected arm in the draft."