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College/Draft Profiles #14 & #15

James Simmons, RHP, UC Riverside: Last year Simmons compiled a record of 9-5, with a team-leading 2.96 ERA. During the 2006 summer, he established himself as a legitimate prospect out on the Cape and was named the ninth best prospect there by Baseball America and the 12th best by PG Crosschecker. While there he walked a total of five hitters in 53 innings. He works in the high-80s for the most part despite being 6'3", 190-pounds. But according to PG Crosschecker (PDF), he had the best "command and polish" of anyone in the league. So far this season, he's held opposing batters to a .205 BA. In a game against San Francisco's LHP Aaron Poreda, he struck out 15 batters and walked one. He's also thrown two complete games, one of which was a shutout. He uses a "cutter changeup" and a curveball. Simmons will have a hard time finding his way into the early portion of the first round, but if he continues to perform he could sneak himself into the back end of the first round. The right-handed version of current Cleveland Indian Jeremy Sowers?

Cole St. Clair, LHP, Rice: Entering the 2007 season, this 6'5", 225-pound reliever was one of the top relievers in college baseball. Now, things are quite iffy for him since he hasn't pitched at all this season due to the health of his left shoulder. In Aaron Fitt's view (in a college chat a couple weeks ago), St. Clair has seen his stock drop the most since his June status is up in the air right now. St. Clair has a three-pitch repertoire, including a "slurvy curveball" and a changeup that "really catches hitters off guard," according to Patrick Ebert. Rice pitchers just can't catch a break. Oh, and he was a teammate of Yankees prospect Phil Hughes at Foothill High School in California.

[editor's note, by Russ] Future profiles will appear like this and focus on how they have performed so far this season. I'll get into high school players soon, too.