Two highly rated Seminole State College baseball players caught the attention of Major League Baseball scouts throughout the 2014 season.
Right-handed Raider pitchers, Jake Cosart and Gianni Zayas, were drafted in the 2014 MLB Draft, which was held June 5-7.
Both pitchers were ranked at the start of the season in the top 10 on Perfect Game’s Top 200 JUCO Prospects list, Cosart at No. 2 and Zayas at No. 7, and they attracted coverage early on in Baseball America (“Seminole State Features Exciting Righthanders”).
Cosart, whose fastball tops out around 98 mph, was selected in the third round by the Boston Red Sox. He entered the season unpolished, but with 13 games and 64 innings of experience, he has been well-tested on the field. He went 5-3 with a 5.34 ERA, allowing 67 strikeouts against 65 hits and just 23 walks. While he is still unpolished as a pitcher, scouts see in him great potential for development. According to the MLB.com article about Cosart, “Those who have watched him up close wonder with excitement how good he will be once he really learns to pitch.”
Cosart’s older brother, Jarred, currently starts for the Houston Astros. His younger brother, Jansen, is a freshman third baseman for Seminole State.
Zayas was selected on the third day of the draft in round 29 by the Chicago Cubs organization. The sophomore from North Bergen, New Jersey, has a skillset similar to Cosart’s, though he leans toward finesse rather than speed, maintaining considerable control of his curveball and slider. In 10 games, Zayas was 4-1, pitching 53.1 innings with an ERA of 4.22. With 49 strikeouts against 42 hits and 27 walks, Zayas has an exciting upside.
Cosart and Zayas helped lead the Raiders to a 23-19-1 record in 2014, which included a late-season run to secure a berth in the Mid-Florida Conference Wild Card game heading to the postseason.