In sporting terms, Brock Porter is a unicorn — kind of a once-in-a-lifetime prospect.
The Orchard Lake St. Mary’s grad and Milford native has put together the kind of career that sounds as fantastic as this mythical beast, topped off with one of the most ridiculously successful senior seasons on record, pitching more than twice more non-hitters (five) as earned runs allowed (two), winning almost every award imaginable – Mr. Baseball, Gatorade National Player of the Year, Perfect Game National Pitcher of the Year.
Throw in a 90s fastball, change, curveball, and development slider, and it’s a package that almost doesn’t feel real.
There’s one more thing that could put Porter in even more rarefied air: this weekend’s Major League Baseball draft.
If Porter is picked where he’s currently projected to go by most pundits, he could be one of Michigan’s best prep players ever drafted.
We’ll definitely find out on Sunday night, when the first round of the draft kicks off at 7 p.m.
Porter is ranked the 11th draft prospect by MLB.com pundits, including Jim Callis, who called the OLSM product the best draft prep pitcher.
“He’s the best high school pitcher in the nation, potentially the first pitcher to be selected in the 2022 draft, and a driving force behind one of the best high school teams in the nation,” Callis said in endorsing Porter’s selection. for the Gatorade POY. award.
MLB.com’s latest mock draft on Wednesday had Porter 12th overall for the Tigers, which would make him the seventh Michigan prep player to be in the top dozen first-round picks, and the highest since Derek Throw in 1992.
Rarefied air, indeed.
How rare is it for mitt prep players to go top of the draft?
In the nearly 60 years of the baseball draft, there have been fewer than 20 players drafted straight out of high school in Michigan, and the vast majority of them came over 40 years ago.
If Porter goes there anytime in the first round, it will be just the 19th first round for a Michigan high school since the draft was instituted in 1965, and the fourth for an Oakland County school. He will join Birmingham Brother Rice’s Nick Plummer (#23, 2015), Walled Lake Western’s Dan Gabriele (#21, 1985) and Southfield’s Ted Simmons (#10, 1967).
(Note: This does not include county natives who were drafted out of college, such as Kirk Gibson of Waterford; nor does it include Detroit Catholic Central, which was not a county school in Oakland in 1971, when Frank Tanana went to the Angels at No. 13.)
While Gabriele has never thrown over the Double A ball in the Red Sox system, Plummer made his big league debut in April, after signing with the Mets as a minor league free agent. after bouncing around in the Cardinals system for six years and 460 in the minor league. Games.
Simmons amassed 50.3 wins over substitution (top 15 among catchers, all-time) in 2,456 major league games over a 21-year career, elected to the Hall of Fame in 2020 by the Committee of veterans.
Most fictional drafts have Porter landing somewhere between pick #8 and pick 15, where slot values range from $5,439,500 at the top to $4,082,900 at the bottom. Would that be enough to divert him from his commitment to Clemson?
He said all the right things when asked.
“I’m pretty excited. I think he (Clemson’s new coach Erik Bakich) went there yesterday and I’m going there in a week to start my summer school and training and stuff, so I’m pretty motivated to go there go and I hope to win a national championship with them,” Porter said of the coaching change, when asked after his no-hitter in the Division 1 semifinals at MSU’s McLane Stadium last month. last. “I heard he was a great coach and developed the players really well. Hopefully that will make us much better and hopefully win the national championship.”
If Porter ends up telling the teams he’d rather go to school, he’s unlikely to be picked in the first round. Generally speaking, the clubs have already reached an agreement on the price of the player when the choice is made at this stage.
While it’s not uncommon for teams to throw out a few draft and follow-up picks in later rounds at Michigan’s prep stars, very few made it to the first round of the draft.
Plummer, the Brother Rice outfielder, was the most recent, going to the Cardinals as the No. 23 pick in the 2015 first round, the only Michigan high school product to advance to the first round in two dozen years.
Only five prep Michiganders have made it to the first round in the last 40 years.
Dearborn Divine Child’s 6-foot-10 Ryan Anderson was selected by the Mariners with the 19th pick in the 1997 first round.
Kalamazoo Central’s thrower was the Yankees’ No. 6 overall pick in 1992, while Taylor Kennedy’s Steve Avery was the Braves’ No. 3 pick in 1988. The Red Sox took Gabriele with the No. 21 pick in the first tower in 1985. .
The preponderance of Michigan’s 18 high school products to enter the first round came in the first 20 years of the draft’s existence.
In 1979, the Tigers beat Livonia Churchill outfielder Chris Baker with the No. 23 pick, after catching Wyandotte Roosevelt right-hander Kevin Richards with the No. 5 pick in 1977. Four picks after Richards, the Rangers took the Howell’s shortstop David Hibner with the No. 9 pick in ’77.
Utica Ford II’s Jim Parke was picked by the Pirates with the No. 21 first-round pick in 1976, while Gaylord left-hander David Johnson went to the Cardinals as the No. 16 pick in 1975.
Eight of them came in the first 10 years of the draft.
In 1971, Detroit Catholic Central’s Tanana was the 13th pick in the first round, while Detroit McKenzie right-hander William Daniels made four later picks.
Ecorse outfielder Leonard Weems was the Twins’ 18th pick in the January 1967 draft, then Minnesota came back and took Lansing Sexton outfielder Clifford Foster at No. 14 in the January high school draft of that year .
Detroit Northwestern’s John Mayberry became the Astros’ No. 6 in 1967, four spots ahead of Southfield’s Simmons.
Bernie Carbo of Livonia High School was the Reds’ first-round pick at No. 16 in the first-ever MLB draft in 1965, with the Tigers taking Rick Konik of Detroit St. Andrews High School at No. 14 in 1966.
Porter may not even be the only OLSM player drafted this year: In MLB.com’s list of top 250 draft prospects, receiver Ike Irish, a draftee from Auburn, was No. 121, while third baseman Jack Crighton – potentially Porter’s future Clemson teammate – was at No. 220. Athletic’s Keith Law ranked Porter No. 18 and Irish No. 53 on his top 100 prospect list.
Former UM baseball commits of OLSM, Crighton and Schubart, land on their feet after an upset