One college baseball publication believes South Carolina weathered this summer MLB draft just fine.
Writing for Perfect Game, national baseball writer Kendall Rogers cited the Gamecocks as one of a dozen winners across the country in terms of teams keeping their top incoming players. USC was listed along with LSU, Miami, Fla., Missouri, Loyola Marymount, Arkansas, Florida, Virginia, Texas, Cal State Fullerton, Stanford and UCLA as programs that got the large majority of their signing classes to school.
Here is what Rogers wrote about South Carolina.
“Those wanting a glimpse at a bright future should look at what the Gamecocks have coming to campus this fall. The Gamecocks have a very, very good freshman class on their hands with left-handed pitcher Alex Destino leading the charge. Meanwhile, RHP Brandon Murray, RHP Braden Webb, RHP Jeff Harding Jr., C Hunter Taylor and RHP Clarke Schmidt are other talented headliners. South Carolina's draft couldn't have gone much better, especially when you throw in veteran key hitter Kyle Martin returning to Columbia, S.C., for his senior campaign.”
Martin, a senior first baseman, was one of 13 key returnees listed as well, and Rogers described his impact in this way.
“The Gamecocks hope to return to the College World Series in 2015, and the return of Martin could prove to be huge. Martin, an imposing presence, finished the '14 campaign with a team-best .336 batting average, 11 doubles, five homers and 38 RBIs. He returned to South Carolina despite getting drafted in the 20th round by the Los Angeles Angels.”
The losers on the list were Southern Mississippi and Florida State. Read the full story here.