HBCU Baseball’s Top “No Fly Zone” Fleet Footed Outfielders

Black College Nines (BCN) takes a look at ten of the best fleet footed “No Fly Zone” outfielders in HBCU Baseball. Our list follows statistical information of the speedsters reaching balls hit in the gaps and turning would be hits into routine outs.

BCN evaluated players by arm strength, fielding range, speed, and hitting for power and average.

These players have proven themselves with raw talent for their defensive ability and bring some of the best speed in all of HBCU baseball and have proven themselves on the field. This post covers our top outfielders for the shorten season. This group has some high-end talent in our eyes. All of these players should have a future in the outfield.

The phrase “No Fly Zone” was used by Texas College head coach Anthony “Happy” Macon to describe his 2018 outfielders who turned balls driven into the gap that appeared to be a hit, but were caught as outs.

No. 1 Cameron Phelts Texas College
Phelts athleticism and speed make him one of the top college hitters in the HBCU Baseball class. Of the top tier of college outfielders, he shows off an intriguing combination of speed and of being a sparkplug in the lineup. In the shortened 2020 season, stole 48 bases in 29 games and ranks No. 1 in the NAIA in fielding percentage (1.000). A gifted center fielder makes him one of the top outfielders in the country. Also has the best chance to stay in center field in pro ball. One of the fastest players in the 2020 draft class. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder     C PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Cameron Phelts     54  45 9 0            1.000           100


No. 2 La’Nas Torrey Tougaloo College

La’Nas is a sophomore outfielder from Pascagoula, MS.  Before this season was cut short amid COVID-19 concerns, La’Nas was on fire for the Bulldogs. He finished this season with a 1.000% fielding percentage with 47 putouts. He was ranked #1 in the NAIA in fielding percentage. He was also a powerhouse on the offensive side as well as he led the Bulldogs with a .325 batting average and 20 stolen bases. Ranked #6 in the NAIA in total stolen bases. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder      C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
La’Nas Torrey      49  47 2 0              1.000              99.8


No. 3 Shane Reviello Bluefield State College 

Reviello, as BSC’s center fielder for the first 13 games of the season had 34 putouts, and 1 assist, with a fielding pct. of 1.000. His season ended prematurely, when he was sidelined with a concussion after going headfirst into an outfield fence. His ability to take good routes, communicate with corner OF’s, and make above average plays, helped the team tremendously. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder     C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Shane Reviello     35  34 1 0               1.000              99.7


No. 4 Steven Joyner Claflin University

The junior center fielder was the top outfielder for the Panthers in this shortened season. In 13 games played with 12 starts he had a perfect fielding percentage, recording 34 putouts with no errors and one assist. Steven who has gap speed in the outfield, makes difficult plays look easy, “plays that most guys don’t get close to, let alone make” according to head coach James Randall. Major League Baseball has shown great interest in Steven. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder    C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Steven Joyner    35   34 1 0            1.000             99.1


No. 5 Marcos Castillo Coppin State University
Castillo, who runs a 6.55/ 60 yard dash, has a .965 fielding percentage. His reads of balls off the bat makes him a “Gold Glove” defensive player who possesses a plus plus throwing arm. His spectacular catch (laying out for a ball heading toward the right center gap) in the 2/26/2020 Georgetown game was what secured Coppins 6-5 victory. The ceiling remains very high for the center fielder who has MLB interest. A Black College Nines Freshman of the Year in 2018. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder      C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Marcos Castillo      42   40 1 1            .976             98.8


No. 6 Roderick Coffee Texas Southern University 

The redshirt freshman has exploded onto the nation as the No. 3 ranked freshman hitter in all of Division I baseball. His monstrous first season seems legit. One of the nation’s premier sluggers, but he is also known for his stellar defensive work with speed and standout tools who moves well to the ball in the outfield. Coffee has shown the ability to be a well above average defender with his plus range and covers ground very quickly. His arm is a plus which plays with the rest of his defense for him to project as a very good “No Fly Zone” fielder in the future. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder     C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Roderick Coffee     29   26 3 0             1.000              98.7


No. 7 Nick Fajardo North Carolina Central University. 

Fajardo recorded a 1.000 fielding percentage this season with 22 putouts and two assists over 11 games and 10 starts. Any ball hit in the gaps or to the warning track, he is under or arm extended making the catch for an out. Last season as a freshman he ranked in the top ten in the MEAC with a .991 fielding percentage with 106 putouts, six assists, and just one error. Over his career he has 128 putouts, eight assists, and one error for a .993 fielding percentage. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder      C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Nick Fajardo      24   22 2 0             1.000            97.9


No. 8 Brian Cordell University of Maryland Eastern Shore
Cordell was on his way to a breakout season before the season was cut short. The center fielder tracks down anything he can get his glove near. According to head coach Brian Hollamon “In many cases, as soon as the ball is in the air, we mark it down in the books as an out.” Cordell runs extremely well and is a competitor. Considered one of the best outfielders in the MEAC Conference. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder      C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Brian Cordell      39   36 0 3              .923             97.2


No. 9 Alex Jones Lincoln University (PA)
Alex, a freshman, is a sub 7 runner who has quick instincts and a first step to match. His glove is one of the better ones head coach Anthony Pla has seen for an incoming freshman and can track down a lot of would-be doubles in the gap. He began the season starting in 6 of 8 games in right field and “looks to be very comfortable out there” according to coach Pla. With the season cut short, he will have some time to get his already strong arm healthy for the 2021 season and make some more progress as a player. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder      C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Alex Jones      11   9 0 2              .818            96.5


No. 10 Max Tracey, Jr. Savannah State University 

Max is arguably one of the fastest baseball players head baseball coach Carlton Hardy has ever coached. He has run a 6.4 60. He absolutely gets after it on the baseball field and tracks down balls well in the gaps. Had a slight injury this earlier in the season but he is one the SIAC will need to keep an eye on. Based on 2020 Statistics:

     Outfielder      C  PO A E Fielding Percentage % BCN Overall Rating
Max Tracey      6   5 1 0             1.000            94.8

Honorable Mention:

Darius Sewell Savannah State – is a red-shirt senior that will be returning in 2021. He runs a 6.6 60 and it shows both at the plate and in the field.

DJ Franklin Savannah State – is a redshirt sophomore that runs a 6.5 60.  Plays a good CF and tracks down balls well in both gaps.

Carter Williams North Carolina Central – This season he made 28 putouts with one error for a .966 fielding percentage in nine games, as he was limited to a short season due to the (COVID-19) Pandemic.

Jordan Vidato Texas Southern – Freshman outfielder tracks very well in outfield above average defender with above average arm.

Malik Shinozaki Florida Memorial – The Japanese native, a freshman from Fukijima, Japan, has speed in the gaps and has made more than a few spectacular “web gem” type catches this season.

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