35 Watch 1 Throw 93

Mississippi State baseball signee Jarred Holloway, a 6-4, 210-pound, hard-throwing, lefthanded pitcher who throws for Russellville (AR) High School, has really attracted attention from Major League Baseball scouts and scouting directors this spring.

Jarred Holloway Profile Page:

Jarred, who won't be 18 years old until August 28th, throws hard, really hard with a plus curveball. And the word has gotten out to all the Major League Baseball clubs. A recent game proved that.

"There were 35 scouts at his game the other night," said Mark Holloway, Jarred's dad. "The Braves have sent four different people to watch him. And a guy from the Yankees came all the way from Florida two weeks ago to watch Jarred throw a bullpen at practice. We are really surprised about all this."

Considering he was throwing in the 92 to 93 miles per hour range and he's a lefthanded pitcher, it's no surprise to just about anyone else that's connected to pro or amateur baseball.

The Perfect Game USA folks definitely know about Jarred because they personally called to invite him to a Perfect Game USA event in Fort Myers, Florida in January. And he didn't disappoint anyone .... well, except for the disappointment that he caused the hitters that he faced.

"He struck out 8 during his three innings," said Mark. "He was (throwing) 92. I kind of sat behind the backstop and he was over 90 almost all the time. He was at 90-91 the entire time, but 92 was his top (velocity)."

While all this is great news for Jarred, will it be bad news for the Mississippi State baseball coaches when the Major League Baseball draft rolls around in June?

"With all that said, we still like Mississippi State," noted Mark. "Our thoughts about (the draft), based on looking at the last three or four drafts, is college kids way outnumber kids coming out of high school as far as the top three rounds go. And we feel like there is a reason for that. We also haven't had one single person tell us going to Mississippi State is going to hurt him. Everybody we have talked to has said that we couldn't have gone to a better place. That will play a pretty big part in the decision when it comes down to draft day. And it will also have to be something really special for him to bypass Mississippi State."

There could be some really special signing bonus money thrown his way if a pro team likes what they see after watching Jarred throw this spring. How much will that factor in Jarred's decision?

"To say the money doesn't mean anything would be stupid, but Jarred wants a career in baseball," explained Mark. "He doesn't just want a signing bonus and be through (with pro baseball) in three years. And we still feel like college is the best place for that. Andrew Miller, out at North Carolina, is a perfect example. We know for a fact that he turned down 2.5 half million dollars out of high school to go to North Carolina. And now he's projected as the number 1 pick in the upcoming draft. He's going to get quite a bit more because he's lefthanded and he's throwing 97 now."

And it appears the current pitching coach situation at Mississippi State gives the Holloway's hope that that could also happen to Jarred.

"Everybody knows that (MSU pitching) Coach (Russ) McNickle has a pretty good program for his pitchers," said Mark. "Even more since we signed (with MSU) we are finding out that he is pretty well-respected as far as what people think about him. That makes us feel like we not only made a good choice, but we got lucky that they even found us.

"I'm excited about Mississippi State. Jarred is as excited as me. Jarred, right now, is thinking that if something happens really crazy this spring, then he might have to make a decision in June, but he's still excited about Mississippi State. He wears his Mississippi State cap everywhere he goes. Not only that, but he's on their website every day checking up on who did what in the ballgames."

And pretty soon Jarred and his family will be attending a Mississippi State ballgame or two.

"We are thinking about coming to the Tennessee series this weekend, but we are having to watch the weather," said Mark. "If we don't make that one, we should be able to come to the Arkansas series."

And I strongly suspect that all Mississippi State fans who follow MSU baseball hope that the Holloway family will be attending many more SEC baseball series over the course of the next few years.

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the Dawgs' Bite, Powered by GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing swindoll@genespage.com.

Gene's Page Top Stories