FSU Baseball Announces 2013-14 Recruiting Class

The Seminoles welcome 13 newcomers to this year’s team.

By Florida State Sports Information  

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – With the first week of classes in full swing for the 2013 fall semester, Florida State baseball and head coach Mike Martin has announced its 13-member signing class for the 2013-14 season. This year’s class features 11 players from the state of Florida and two from Georgia.


The signees include Alec Byrd, LHP; Taylor Blatch, RHP; Ben DeLuzio, INF; Daniel De La Calle, C; Derek Fritz, C/1B; Nick Graganella, OF; M.T. Minacci, RHP/INF; Hank Truluck, OF/INF; Ed Voyles, RHP; Jim Voyles, RHP; Andy Ward, RHP; Gage West, C/OF; and Will Zirzow, RHP.


“The 2013-14 class is very versatile with a great deal of athleticism which is something very hard to find these days,” said assistant coach and Seminole recruiting coordinator Mike Martin, Jr. “We will look to play a faster brand of baseball now and in the future due to the athletic make-up of this class. The pitchers are very polished and we will look for them to come in and help us right away as a starter, in mid-relief and even in closing situations.

“The position players give us a solid nucleus for the years to come. This group also provides above average power at the plate but with the ability to run. We are really excited about this year’s group and are anxious to see how they develop and mature throughout the season.”


Here is a closer look at the 2013-14 Florida State Baseball recruiting class:


Alec Byrd, Miami Shores, FL (St. Thomas Aquinas High School)

LHP, L/L, 6-3, 175

*1st Team Louisville Slugger All-American

*1st Team FACA All-American

*Sun Sentinel Player of the Year

*Miami Herald Pitcher of the Year

*Drafted 37th Round (1125 overall) by the Cincinnati Reds

*High school coach: Troy Cameron


Assistant coach Mike Martin, Jr. on Byrd: “Alec is an extremely polished left-handed pitcher that can throw three pitches for strikes. His fastball has been clocked anywhere between 87-89 mph and can touch 91 on occasion. We have really big plans for him as a true freshman.”


Taylor Blatch, Stuart, FL (Jensen Beach High School)

RHP, R/R, 5-11, 160

*Perfect Game National Rank: 132

*1st Team All-Area

*Drafted 27th Round (800 overall) by the Minnesota Twins

*High school coach: Chris Vaccaro


Martin, Jr. on Blatch: “Taylor is a right-handed pitcher with an electric arm. He can get his fastball up to 94 mph. Taylor is another guy that will make an instant impact on the mound this year. He is also a very athletic player that can get off the mound and make a play.”


Ben DeLuzio, Windermere, FL (The First Academy)

INF, R/R, 6-3, 190

*FACA All-Star Game MVP

*Drafted 3rd Round (80 overall) by the Miami Marlins

*High school coach: Steve Sagraves


Martin, Jr. on DeLuzio: “Ben is one of the highest drafted players to step foot on Florida State’s campus in quite a while.  He is an extremely athletic kid that can play infield or outfield. Offensively, Ben has a lot of power from the right side. He is a guy that can step in and help us right away.”


Danny De La Calle, Miami, FL (Miami Dade College)

C, R/R, 6-3, 220

*MDC: 1st Team All-Southern Conference

*Ferguson High School: Miami Herald All-Dade County Second Team (2010), First Team (2011)

*Drafted 33rd Round (1000 overall) by the Texas Rangers

*Junior College coach: Danny Price


Martin, Jr. on De La Calle: “Daniel might be one of the most polished catch and throw guys in the junior college ranks in the state of Florida. He has a cannon for an arm and has great hands behind the plate.”


Derek Fritz, Parkland, FL (Stoneman Douglas High School)

C/1B, R/R, 6-1, 220

*FACA All-Star Game

*Rawlings All-Region 2nd Team

*Miami Herald All-Broward 8A-6A First Team DH

*High school coach: Todd FitzGerald


Martin, Jr. on Fritz: “Derek is a right-handed hitting catcher that is a very strong kid. He has plus power from the right side. Derek throws the ball well and does a great job of running a pitch staff.”


Nick Graganella, Tallahassee, FL (Tallahassee Community College)

OF, R/R, 5-8, 175

*TCC: FCSAA Panhandle All-Conference Team

*North Florida Christian School: Two-time All-Area and All-District selection

*All-AAU National All-Tournament Team 2011

*Junior College coach: Mike McCloud


Martin, Jr. on Graganella: “Nick has outstanding speed. He has a strong, compact swing which can translate into power at the Division I level. He is a very good outfielder that can cover a lot of ground. He likes to play the speed game with his ability to bunt.”


M.T. Minacci, Tallahassee, FL (North Florida Christian School)

RHP/INF, R/R, 6-0, 170

*FACA 3A All-State Team

*Rawlings 1st Team All-American

*Drafted 20th Round (589 overall) by the Colorado Rockies

*High school coach: Mike Posey


Martin, Jr. on Minacci: “M.T. is a two-way guy that will serve as both a right-handed pitcher and an infielder that can play multiple positions. On the mound, his fastball has reached 94 mph. M.T. is also a very athletic kid that has very good speed.”


Hank Truluck, Ocala, FL (Forest High School)

INF/OF, R/R, 6-0, 190

*2012 & 2013 1st Team All-Conference

*Batted .300 senior year with 18 RBI and 19 R

*High school coach: Wayne Yancey


Martin, Jr. on Truluck: “Hank is a right-handed hitter who is a very versatile player. He can play infield or outfield and is an above average runner. Hank will be a contributor on this team and will be a good player of us.”


Ed Voyles, Atlanta, GA (Holy Innocents Episcopal School)

RHP, R/R, 6-7, 205

*Perfect Game National Ranking: 290

*Rawlings All-Southeast 1st Team

*High school coach: DC Aiken


Martin, Jr. on Ed Voyles: “The Voyles twins are splitting images of each other. Ed is a right-handed pitcher that can get his fastball up to 91 mph. He has an above average breaking ball and will provide a great deal of depth to our pitching staff this upcoming season. Ed was also a tremendous basketball player in high school.”


Jim Voyles, Atlanta, GA (Holy Innocents Episcopal School)

RHP, R/R, 6-7, 205

*Perfect Game National Ranking: 295

*Rawlings All-Southeast 1st Team

*High school coach: DC Aiken


Martin, Jr. on Jim Voyles: “Jim is very similar to his brother Ed in that his fastball reaches 91 mph. He has a plus change-up and an above average breaking ball.  Along with his brother Ed, was a very good high school basketball player as well.


Andy Ward, Oviedo, FL (Oviedo High School)

RHP, R/R, 6-3, 200

*2012 Perfect Game National East MVP Pitcher

*2011 WWBA 16U MVP Pitcher

*Miami Herald All-Broward 8A-6A First Team DH

*Missed 2013 season due to Tommy John surgery

*High school coach: Harold Hitt


Martin, Jr. on Ward: “Andy is a right-handed pitcher that is coming off Tommy John surgery this past spring. Before the surgery, he was ranked as one of the best right-handed pitchers in the country. Andy has a fastball that has been clocked at 93 mph with a wipe-out slider. When we finally get him healthy, Andy will make an immediate impact on this team.”


Gage West, Tallahassee, FL (Lincoln High School)

C/OF, L/R, 6-1, 205

*Two-time All-Big Bend selection

*Perfect Game 2nd Team All-American

*FHSAA All-State Team

*FACA Region 1 Player of the Year

*High school coach: Joe Vallese


Martin, Jr on West: “Gage is a left-handed hitting catcher/outfield from right here in Tallahassee. He has above average power and is a very polished hitter. Gage runs very well and is a very athletic player.”


Will Zirzow, Jacksonville, FL (The Bolles School)

RHP, R/R, 6-5, 220

*Under Armour Preseason All-American

*Two sport star at Bolles received FBS offers to play tight end

*High school coach: Mike Boswell


Martin, Jr. on Zirzow: “Will is a right-handed pitcher with a fastball that reaches 89 mph. He is a big, strong, physical player that also exceled in football at The Bolles School in Jacksonville – the same school the produced DJ Stewart.”

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