Scott Mitchell has returned from heart surgery to pitch his high school team into the Maryland state championship game.
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Scarcely a word was written when pitcher Scott Mitchell from Aberdeen, Md., committed to Radford's baseball team in August, but that development has taken on added significance.
Mitchell, who pitched a two-hit shutout for victorious South River in the 4-A Maryland state championship game, was named player of the year on the Washington Post's All-Metro baseball team.
Mitchell played his last two seasons at South River after June 2011 surgery to relieve a blockage in his aorta, the artery leading from his heart.
"They've basically taken care of it," Radford coach Joe Raccuia said Wednesday. "It's tough to describe it, but what I do know is that he's unable to lift heavy weights still."
That didn't prevent Mitchell from posting an 0.31 earned-run average and striking out 88 batters in 66 innings.
"He's tall, he's thin. He's got a real projectable body," Raccuia said. "Some people didn't know what the upside would be and didn't know if they wanted to take a chance.
"He wasn't showing enough velocity for certain people at times, but we believed it was in there."
Mitchell (6-foot-3, 170 pounds) batted .383 this season for South River and was recruited by the Highlanders as a two-way player.
"Even if he becomes a one-way player down the road, we know that that athleticism is going to stay with him," Raccuia said. "Guys like that can make mechanical adjustments quicker than guys that don't have a real athletic body."
Raccuia also is excited about another pitching recruit, left-hander Colin Hill from William Byrd. Hill's father, Sandy, played at Virginia Tech and in the Pittsburgh Pirates chain.
"He's like a left-handed version of Scott - a big kid with an upside who throws 89 [mph]," Raccuia said.
North Carolina has taken a football commitment from Tyler Powell, a 6-5, 252-pound defensive end from Cosby High School in Richmond. Rivals.com shows Powell with 20 scholarship offers, three from ACC members Boston College, Duke and Wake Forest but not from Virginia or Virginia Tech.
n Wake had taken an earlier commitment from Daiquan Lawrence, a 6-1, 185-pound defensive back from Western Branch High School in Chesapeake. Lawrence also had an offer from UVa. ... Jared Coker, a 6-3, 285-pound offensive lineman from Briar Woods in Loudoun County, has committed to Bowling Green.
Nineteen in-state prospects have made commitments to Football Bowl Subdivision schools for 2014.
Danny O'Brien, the starting quarterback at Maryland before transferring to Wisconsin, is back on the market after being dropped to fourth on the Badgers depth chart.
O'Brien graduated from Maryland in just over three years, which gave him instant eligibility at Wisconsin, where he began the 2012 season as a starter but lost his job after three games.
FSU looks for AD
Florida State is looking for a new athletic director after the announcement that Randy Spetman will be leaving that post by "mutual agreement." Spetman, who replaced Dave Hart in 2008, has had a stormy tenure that coincided with the somewhat contentious retirement of former football Bobby Bowden, as well as conference realignment issues.
Word out of Harrisonburg is that Colonial Athletic Association champion James Madison will open the 2013-2014 men's basketball season at Virginia, which would mark the first meeting between the teams since 2003.
UVa, apparently beefing up its nonconference schedule, also has a home game with Virginia Commonwealth.
John Ballein, associate athletic director for football operations at Virginia Tech, will be inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame (Washington-Greene County Chapter) on Friday night. Ballein played football and baseball and also wrestled at Bentworth High School, where he held numerous defensive records for the football team.
Ballein, heavily involved in the Tech football operation for the past 20 years, conceded that his post-high school "endeavors" may have contributed to his enshrinement.