"I'm a ballplayer. I'm looking for a place to play. I heard rumors about the Midwest. They say every town out there has a team, and that they'll find you a job int eh daytime so you can play ball at night and on the weekends. Thought I'd give it a try."
- Archie "Moonlight" Graham, in Shoeless Joe Jackson Comes to Iowa, by W.P. Kinsella
♦ Jake Brentz, a senior OF/LHP from Parkway South HS in Manchester, MO (St. Louis area), has notified his coach, Adam Stahl, that he will not be playing for the Patriots this season.
Instead, Brentz will be playing for the Perfect Game 2013 Iowa Spring Wood Bat Scout League. That league plays on Saturdays and Sundays from March 16 through April 28. The regular Iowa prep season takes place in the summertime, due to the weather, and the Perfect Game Spring League not only provides a baseball venue for top Iowa players during the spring, but also accepts players from outside Iowa who want to play in what they tout as a highly competitive league with maximum exposure to scouts.
Missouri freshman pitcher Alec Rash, who was drafted in the late 2nd round of the 2012 MLB Draft, played in the Perfect Game Iowa Spring League in 2010 and 2012. Rash, being from Iowa, was also able to then play for his high school team in the summer.
♦ An article about Brentz's training regimen, who works with former MU assistant coach Brian DeLunas: Jake Brentz: Fostering Baseball’s Future (thesandlotstl.com)
When Jake threw that 96-mph fastball in front of the best college and pro baseball scouts in the business, it was the culmination of not only recognizing his potential but also maximizing his gifts. Talent – even 96 mph fastballs – has to be recognized and fostered. Jake Brentz trains with Sandlot pitching coach Brian DeLunas to refine his pitching mechanics and with Sandlot owner Rick Strickland to tighten up his hitting stroke...♦ Perfect Game founder Jerry Ford talks about the Iowa Spring League:
♦ Here's an interesting look at the impact of programs like Perfect Game on high school baseball and recruiting: Perfect Game USA and the Future of Baseball: How the Remaking of Youth Scouting Affects the National Pastime (review)(Project Muse)
The emergence of showcases is causing repercussions for high school baseball programs, which Edgerton claims have “become almost irrelevant” and where talent for the most part “isn’t all that good”. Select baseball has taken over as the destination for the best youth players, and some of the nation’s more prominent select programs (such as the East Cobb program in Georgia) feed into Perfect Game showcases and participate in Perfect Game tournaments...♦ Local Baseball Player Has Great Potential (ksdk.com VIDEO)
♦ Read more about Mizzou recruit Jake Brentz HERE