Eric Lauer Named #14 on Baseball America's Top 50 College Freshman

Matt Ryerson-US PRESSWIRE

Kent State's LHP Eric Lauer is one of the nation's best freshmen.

On Monday, Baseball America released their list of the 50 best freshmen in all of college baseball going into the 2014 season. Kent State's Eric Lauer came up at #14 on that list after being drafted in the 17th round (505th overall pick) of the 2013 MLB Draft.

Heading into the draft, BA had Lauer as the 125th best draft-able prospect. A 6'3" 190-pound pitcher from Elyria, Ohio, Lauer is a true athlete and has a lot of room to grow and be to drafted even higher than that in his next go-round at the draft.

As the temperatures rose in the Midwest, so did Lauer's draft stock. He started flashing a 94 mph fastball while looking like he was playing catch. The 6-foot-3, 190-pounder was an all-state wide receiver, and his athleticism translates well to the mound. He has a clean arm action and repeats his delivery, usually pitching at 90-92 mph with his fastball. There are mixed reports on his curveball, though some scouts say his arm speed and aptitude will result in a solid breaking ball. While his changeup also is a work in progress, he has more overall feel for pitching than most high schoolers. Lauer could be difficult to sign away from a commitment to Kent State, where he could blossom into a 2016 first-rounder under the tutelage of pitching coach Mike Birkbeck.

-Baseball America

The only other left-handed pitching freshmen on the list rated higher than that are Garrett Williams (#6, Oklahoma State) and Matt Krook (#7, Oregon). The Golden Flashes start their season on Feb. 14 in a three-game series at Arizona.

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