BASEBALL Players to Watch (Palm Beach)

Palm Beach County's baseball Class of 2009 looks very strong and is here to break it down for you, giving you a closer look at some of the area's top prospects.

Below are some of the top prospects Palm Beach County has to offer for the baseball Class of 2009.

RHP, R.J. Alvarez, 5-11, 180, R/R, Cardinal Newman
An early commitment to FAU, Alvarez is probably the second hardest thrower in the county right now. He hit 91 at East Cobb this summer, playing for Palm Beach Select. He went 7-5 as a junior with a 2.70 ERA and 90 K's in 70 innings. While he doesn't have a huge frame, he throws hard already and knows how to pitch.

RHP, Chase Bebout, 6-6, 210, L/R, American Heritage
A big, strong, physical presence on the mound, Bebout pitched for the All-American Prospects this summer. He hit 90 at East Cobb back in July and has the frame to really get it up there.

IF Cody Dent, 5-11, 160, L/R, Park Vista
The son of former MLB player Bucky Dent, Cody is one of the top middle infielders in the area. An honorable mention All-Area pick as a junior, Dent's been timed around the 6.9 range and has soft, quick hands. He's played for Palm Beach PAL and the All-American Prospects.

RHP Jacob Johnson, 6-4, 215, R/R, Trinity Christian
A big, strong righty, Johnson is considered the hardest thrower in the county. He's touched low 90's before and because of his frame, he'll likely add a few more at the next level. A first team All-Area pick as a junior, Johnson went 7-2 with a 2.18 ERA and 79 K's in 57 innings. He also hit .432. Johnson's already committed to Wake Forest.

3B Ryan Lashley, 5-11, 180, R/R, Park Vista
A first team All-Area pick as a junior, Lashley hit .402 with five home runs and 34 RBI. He also scored 28 runs. He carries a 3.8+ GPA in the classroom and played this summer with the All-American Prospects.

SS Derek Niesman, 5-10, 180, R/R, American Heritage
A talented shortstop, Niesman hit .414 in the spring with 26 RBI and 12 stolen bases. He made just two errors all season. Over the summer, he played with Diamond Vision Elite and should be among the area's top middle infielders next season.

RHP Kurt Schluter, 6-2, 175, R/R, Jupiter
An athletic righty who plays a number of positions, Schluter hit 90 at East Cobb this summer while playing for Palm Beach Select.

2B Devon Travis, 5-9, 180, R/R, Palm Beach Central
A first team All-Area pick, Travis hit .462 in the spring with four home runs and 21 RBI. He also scored 29 runs and was 11-for-11 on stolen bases. He played this summer with Diamond Vision Elite.

OF Kamm Washington, 5-11, 180, L/L, Park Vista
A Florida commitment, Washington is widely considered the top prospect in the county for the 09 class. He throws upper 80's off the mound and also plays football. He's been clocked in the mid 6.3's and had an excellent spring and summer this year. In the spring, he hit .433 with five home runs, 33 RBI, 31 runs, and 14 steals. He played some of the summer with the All-American Prospects.

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