« UM baseball goes down hard at home in its NCAA regional. The season is over for the Hurricanes. | Main | UM Canes to Honor 1987 National Champions -- and how about College World Series bound Stony Brook? »

Seawolves howling all the way to Baton Rouge, while Canes watch top recruits go bye-bye

The Stony Brook Seawolves looked as good the past few days as the Canes looked bad last Friday in UM's opener in the NCAA Coral Gables Regional.

No. 4 seed Stony Brook (50-12), led by Willie Carmona on Monday night, won the school's first regional championship by defeating UCF 10-6 at Alex Rodriguez Park.

Stony Brook advances to the Baton Rouge Super Regional to meet No. 7 national seed LSU in a best-of-three series.

You may recall Stony Brook pitcher Tyler Johnson (11-1), who dominated the Canes. After two days rest he came out again and allowed four runs in 6 1-3 innings while throwing 119 pitches.

According to the Associated Press, the Seawolves are the third No. 4 seed to win a regional (Missouri, 2006; Fresno State, 2008) since the field was expanded to 64 teams in 2001.

Meanwhile, as the first round of the MLB Draft went on, UM coach Jim Morris must have gotten that sinking feeling -- not that he hasn't had enough of that the past few days.

The No. 1 draft pick Monday? Shortstop Carlos Correa of Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy. No. 1!!!! to Houston. Nothing like rubbing salt on the wound. Carlos, of course, was a UM commitment.

Just as painful: fellow UM commitment Albert Almora, an outfielder from Mater Academy in Hialeah, was picked by the Chicago Cubs sixth overall. Just watched a video on him. Good story. Touching.

And to continue UM's woes, Hurricanes commitment Nick Travieso, a right-handed pitcher, was selected 14th overall by Cincinnati.

Keep in mind that these signees have until July 15th to decide whether they're turning pro or going to college. But let's face it, I think we all know at least what Correa, Almora and Travieso will do (If not, I'll be stunned).

As posted on HurricaneSports:

"Two more signees were selected with compensatory picks, otherwise known as “sandwich round” selections. The Chicago White Sox took Keon Barnum (King High School), highly regarded for his powerful bat and solid arm strength, with their second pick of the night at No. 48. Walker Weickel (Olympia High School), a 6-foot-6 pitcher with a 90-92 mile-per-hour fastball and an impressive 12-to-6 curveball, was the fifth and final Hurricane selected, chosen by the San Diego Padres at pick No. 55.

The 2012 Major League Baseball Entry Draft will resume Tuesday afternoon, set to commence at 12 noon live on MLB Network."

Even before Monday, Jim Morris lamented UM's history in the draft, saying he has watched some pretty special Hurricanes recruits opt for pro ball over college. "I mean the biggest thing that has happened is he last two or three years we've been crushed in the draft on our team, and all our recruiting classses, as people that follow closely know. It's something that's out of your control. We signed some of the best players in the country. We signed the best player in Puerto Rico, but you know you've got to sign players that go to school.

"...I think they're signing too many guys that are not top prospects. When you say that after the first round, 98 persent of the guys do not make it to the Major Leagues, then 98 percent of those guys should have gone to college. Maybe they would have matured physically and mentally and maybe they would have made it...''

How much can one highly regarded prospect improve a program? "It can,'' Morris said. We got a kid out of Orlando, Walker Weickel (GONE!), that can really make me a good coach. ...You need a break and get a guy like that.''

None of the current Canes got drafted Monday. Of the several who are draft-eligible, four were listed by Baseball America ranked in the Top 500:

Catcher Peter O'Brien, ranked 69th nationally and 13th in the state.

Pitcher E.J. Encinosa, 322 nationally and 38th in the state.

Shortstop Stephen Perez, 357th nationally and 45th in the state.

Pitcher Eric Whaley, 397th nationally and 51st in the state.