40 players with Arizona ties were selected in the 2016 MLB Draft. Of those, four standouts from Southern Arizona high schools were taken:
Darick Hall, Dallas Baptist (Buena)
14 (407) Philadelphia Phillies
Darick Hall played at Buena and Cochise College before transferring over to Dallas Baptist. Although he has one year remaining, his draft status means he will most likely go with the Phillies.
Hall was a Louisville Slugger First Team All-American and the Joe Carter Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year after hitting .302 with a team-best 20 home runs and 72 RBIs, while also going 9-3 on the mound and leading the team in strikeouts with 94. Hall was also named the MVC’s Newcomer of the Year in 2016, was a First Team All-MVC selection, and was tabbed to the NCAA Lubbock Regional All-Tournament Team.
His 20 home runs are tied for the second most in a single-season in DBU’s NCAA Division I history, while his 72 RBIs are tied for the fourth most in a season. Hall’s numbers on the mound were equally impressive, as the right-hander served as the Patriots’ number-two starter in the weekend rotation. In 97.0 innings, Hall’s 94 strikeouts rank as the fourth highest total in a single-season.
The Patriots’ first baseman and right-hand pitcher is currently one of nine semifinalists up for the John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award and is also a semifinalist for the Gregg Olson Breakout Player of the Year. Hall was also a semifinalist for the Dick Howser Trophy, which is awarded to the top player in college baseball.
Tyler Fallwell, Cochise (Palo Verde)
19 (583) Kansas City Royals
Former Palo Verde standout Tyler Fallwell committed to play for the University of Houston last October. The 6-foot-4-inch pitcher led the Titans to a state championship in 2014, earning Southern Arizona Player of the Year honors and was named a Louisville Slugger High School All-American before moving on to Cochise.
Fallwell collected six wins this spring with 103 strikeouts in only 84 innings pitched with a 2.87 ERA. He was selected to the All ACCAC First Team, was a First Team All-Region I selection and an ACCAC Division I Gold Grove nominee.
His father, Jason Fallwell, was an All-State selection in 1994 and played for Cochise College like his son. The family will have to make a decision between Houston for college or a shot at professional baseball.
Austin Moore, West Texas A&M (Mountain View)
26 (770) Colorado Rockies
Austin Moore transferred to West Texas A&M this year from the University of Houston and made his mark immediately for the Buffs. Moore helped guide WT to a 36-20 record overall, the program’s first Lone Star Conference Tournament Championship and the team’s third-straight NCAA South Central Regional appearance.
He earned National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Second Team All-South Central Region honors this season and Conference Commissioners Association (CCA) Second Team honors as well. He led the Buffs with a 9-3 record matching the most wins in a season in program history set by Justin Kuks (9-1, 2012) and Dylan James (9-3, 2014). Moore’s 2.94 ERA was the fourth-best in program history among starters and fifth overall. His 16 starts this season ranks second in program history and eighth nationally.
Moore earned first team all-conference honors and finished the season 35th nationally in victories with led the LSC. His 123 strikeouts came within three K’s of the school record set by James in 2014 with 126. Moore finished fifth nationally in strikeouts and second in the LSC. He was named LSC Pitcher of the Week three times this season. He had five complete games in 95 innings, allowing 77 hits, 39 runs – 31 earned and walked 42 as teams hit just .221 against him.
Moore graduated and will sign with Colorado.
Juan Gamez, North Dakota State (Cienega)
31 (933) Minnesota Twins
Juan Gamez, a 6-foot, 220-pound senior compiled 28 hits, 23 runs scored, six doubles, two triples, 18 RBIs, five sacrifice flies and eight stolen bases this year.
In his career as a Bison, Gamez hit .232 in 95 games, including 82 starts, with 66 hits, nine doubles, two triples, eight home runs, 20 walks, seven sacrifice flies and eight stolen bases.
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Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as the top high school reporter in 2014 and has been a youth, high school and college coach for over 30 years. His own children have won multiple state high school championships and were named to all-state teams. Competing in hockey, basketball, baseball and track & field in high school, his unique perspective can only be found here, on AZPreps365.com and on the pages of the Vail Voice and the Tanque Verde Voice. Contact Andy Morales at AMoralesMyTucson@yahoo.com