Tredaway finished as one of the all-time leaders in hits at Oklahoma, while also racking up a number of total bases. The team’s leading hitter in 2022 (.370 BA) was also solid in the field, finishing his career with a .971 fielding percentage. The former Sooner stole more bases this past season (23) than he had in his first three years on campus combined.
Former Oklahoma pitcher Trevin Michael often outclassed opponents late in games, notching 10 saves in the Sooners’ 2022 championship run. Michael, however, also started down the stretch, posting an impressive victory over Florida in the Gainesville Regional final.
Prior to arriving in Norman, Michael played at both Lamar and Northern Oklahoma College Tonkawa.
That win hoisted the Sooners to the 2022 College World Series. The Tigers selected him with one of their 19 selections in the 2022 MLB Draft.
Former Baylor first baseman/outfielder Kyle Nevin became the second Baylor Bears player to transfer to Oklahoma at the conclusion of the 2022 campaign. Not long thereafter, Nevin -who was drafted in the 11th round of the 2022 MLB Draft by the Los Angeles Dodgers- decided to sign and go pro. In 2022, he batted .304 with eight home runs, 15 doubles and 49 RBIs for the Bears this past season. His father, Phil, played 12 seasons in the major leagues and his older brother, Tyler, plays for the Baltimore Orioles.
Former South Carolina Gamecocks second baseman Braylen Whimmer was the only Gamecock infielder to start every game for the team in 2022. Whimmer’s bat aided the team immensely during SEC play, as he notched seven home runs. We break down the Phillies’ 18th-round draft pick in our video spotlight. He reminds us of a player from our 2012 MLB Draft Big Board.
After initially having some issues with pitch selection early in his career, LSU’s Landon Marceaux took his game to the next level over the last two seasons. Part of it was increased attention to detail, as his added proficiency on secondary pitches resulted in 116 strikeouts in 102 innings this past season. The 2021 second-team All-SEC selection developed into one of the conference’s best pitchers with the increased command. We go inside Marceaux’s diverse skill-set in our video breakdown.
Nikhazy plays the game with a unique combination of emotion and savvy. With a four-pitch repertoire that includes a 94 mile-per-hour fastball, the Ole Miss left-hander was one of the SEC’s leaders in strikeouts in 2021. The junior from West Orange High School (Fla.) posted eight games with double-digit Ks this past season, including an eye-opening 16 versus Florida State in the Oxford regional nearly a month ago.
Over the course of his All-American campaign, Nikhazy ranked in the top five in the SEC in a number of categories, including strikeouts and ERA. His mix of pitches has been well-documented, as has his ability to bounce back after giving up home runs.
In terms of his draft stock, look for the left-hander to come off the board somewhere in the draft’s first 60 picks. In the last three drafts (2018-20), the Rebels have had 18 players selected, including five in the first four rounds. We spotlighted former Ole Miss shortstop and Houston Astros 2019 second round pick Grae Kessinger just a few years back.
In 2021, former Troup County HS (Ga.) star Ryan Bliss became just the fourth two-time All-American in Auburn’s baseball history. He did so one year after ranking second in the SEC with 29 hits in just 18 games. Bliss started every game of his true freshman season at Auburn, with a large majority of those starts coming at second base, the position he may eventually land at in the pros.
While the SEC’s coaches selected Bliss as a second-team All-SEC selection in 2021, he has a legitimate chance to become the third Auburn infielder to be drafted in the last three seasons, as Will Holland and Edouard Julien were selected in the fifth and 18th rounds, respectively, of the 2019 MLB Draft. Auburn also had a pitcher, Bailey Horn, taken in the fifth round of the 2020 MLB Draft.
Over the last two seasons, Bliss has developed into a dependable shortstop, posting a career .972 fielding percentage. Bliss’ quick hands, solid reactions and overall bat speed, however, contributed to a robust career .514 slugging percentage for the Tigers. Those totals included a career .328 batting average with 20 home runs and 99 RBIs.
Leiter, the 2021 SEC Newcomer of the Year, blends a competitive nature with outstanding command to frequently dominate hitters in the SEC. The former 20th round pick of the New York Yankees in the 2019 MLB Draft now projects as a Top Five selection in the 2021 MLB Draft. The former New Jersey Gatorade Player of the Year comes from a baseball lineage that includes his father, Al, a 19-year pitcher in the major leagues and uncle, Mark, who played 11 seasons as well.
In a conference loaded with high-end pitching talent, including teammate and future first-rounder Kumar Rocker, Leiter frequently topped the SEC’s pitching ranks during conference play. The Commodores continue to flood major league baseball with quality arms and Leiter’s right arm ranks as one of the best to come out of Nashville. Former teammate Austin Martin went fifth overall to the Toronto Blue Jays in last year’s draft and, in 2019, star outfielder JJ Bleday went fourth overall to the Miami Marlins.
Not since 2017, however, has a pitcher from Vanderbilt gone in the first round. That streak will end when either Leiter or Rocker’s names are called this summer.