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High School  | General  | 12/7/2022

Regional Superlatives: Texas

Tyler Russo     
Photo: Blake Mitchell (Perfect Game)
Most Likely to Make a Huge Jump in the Rankings in 2023:

Tyler Sunseri, RHP, The Woodlands, Texas

There’s not likely to be too many more updates to the ‘23s given their senior spring is on the horizon, but Sunseri made some noise off the circuit late this fall and could make a jump off what he shows in the spring. He’s a physical right-hander who was 87-90 in looks this summer and does it with a ton of ease, but there’s been reports he’s into the low-90s now while still being able to spin it with a ton of conviction and the overall quality to miss bats in the spring.

Grant Origer, RHP, Parker, Texas
Committing to Texas Tech this fall, Origer was a bright spot on the circuit this year and I think he’s got a shot to jump further in the rankings off the Top 500 mark. He’s a long 6-foot-3 right-hander with the foundation to make another big jump, already pitching in the upper-80s with big spin numbers on the fastball and the breaking ball has even more significant components, getting into the 2800s on raw spin and showing the overall feel for it to miss bats in a pretty big way.

Blake Beheler, 1B, Sugarland, Texas
If there’s anyone who took advantage of their time on the circuit, it was Beheler. He hit .543 across 35 at-bats and was the MVP of the 15U National Select in June. He’s a really physical sophomore prospect who’s athletic and fields the first base position at an impactful level, but the bat is certainly what carries the profile here. There’s obvious strength in the stroke and it allows him to be direct with the path and still create big impact. The consistency paired with the strength he possesses is a good formula for when he really starts to leverage the baseball.

Most Likely to Hit .500 in PG Events in 2023:

Sam Erickson, OF, Flower Mound, Texas
While the 17u circuit brings its fair share of challenges with big arms galore, Erickson has simply raked over the last three years on the tournament circuit, so there’s plenty of reason to believe he should continue to do so into next summer. He’s a career .428 hitter in PG events and even more impressively has only struck out 17 times in over 60 games. It’s an explosive stroke with plenty of impact strength (6 home runs), while being able to stay compact through the process. He’s got tools across the board and an impressive track record of hitting in our biggest events.

Kayson Cunningham, SS, San Antonio, Texas
If we’re talking about track record of hitting at any level, Cunningham is one that belongs in the conversation. Hitting over .450 across the last two years of PG events, he’s one of the best pure hitters in the country, really regardless of class. It’s a quick and athletic stroke that’s geared for consistency and he’s growing into some juice now, too. The parts work very well together and it pairs well with the seemingly high-level ability to recognize in the box. His athleticism translates all over the diamond giving him impactful defensive versatility, and if there’s any player I’d trust to plug into the heart of my lineup right now and know that he’s gonna produce, it’s surely him.

William Hill, OF, Humble, Texas
Hill is another that’s just a sophomore but is one that has hit at every stop in his young career. He’s an impactful athlete as a 6.6 runner who can flat out go get the baseball in the outfield, and that certainly contributes to his ability to find a way on base in situations that many others may not reach, but to put it simply he can really hit. It’s a simple stroke with quality bat speed, he’s connected well with each swing, and he’s started to show that he’s coming into some strength with plenty left to unlock. He checks a ton of boxes as a hitter and hit .422 in ’22 in 150 at-bats.

Most Likely to Make a Velo Jump into the Mid-90s in 2023:

Cooper Williams, LHP, Alvin, Texas

Williams had a pretty monster summer where he struck out 31 in 19 innings and allowed just 5 hits and 3 walks, an impressive feat given the quality of events it was done in. He’s now a 6-foot-4, 175-pound left-hander with significant length to project on, and he was already up to 92. Given the ease and consistency of the operation paired with the young frame and overall physical projection in it, odds are he’s got another jump in the tank and it could be a loud one.

Matthew Millett, RHP, Grand Prairie, Texas
A steady progression in velocity over a two-plus year sample is good reason to believe Millett is trending in the right direction toward being another Texan power arm. He was impressive all year on the circuit, pitching right around the 87-91 range in different looks and given a handful of factors, there’s a good chance he’ll pop more going into next summer. He’s really athletic as a sub-6.7 runner, and it shows in the delivery. There’s obvious arm talent and he’s gonna miss a ton of bats long term, he’ll just have to continue to refine the command if the jump does come.

Cooper Rummel, RHP, Austin, Texas
Similar to Millett, Rummel has progressed nicely over the last year, and he’s got similar reasons as to why he may be one of the youngest arms in the state to jump up into the mid-90s. He’s a 6-foot-3, 200-pound, athletic right-hander who really looks the part with real power-arm traits across the profile in terms of the arm stroke, how well he gets down the slope, and the overall operation. He was up to 92 this summer before taking a good break to make strength gains in the fall and it’ll be exciting to see what he comes out as this spring before a big summer circuit.

Most Likely to Back Up a Breakout in 2022:

Casan Evans, SS/RHP, Houston, Texas

It’s hard to imagine anybody in the state that had a bigger year than Evans in 2022 when you take into account the spring and summer. He’s a high-end two-way prospect who sky-rocketed in the rankings going into the summer after he was up to 95 this spring and turned in a handful of extremely impressive outings. He turned that over into the summer, pitching in the low-90s and taking home a pair of MV-Pitcher awards with 31 strikeouts and limited baserunners in 21 innings of work. The athleticism of being a shortstop and handling well in the box shows up on the mound, and he’s a strong bet to continue to perform on the mound at every stop in 2023.

Ryler Smart, LHP, Houston, Texas
Smart made a massive jump from last summer in terms of velocity, having been in the low-80s just over a year ago, to peaking in the low-90s and holding his velocity right up near that range now. He got extensive work on the tournament circuit this year with just over 50 innings in a ton of big events, and he seemed to perform at a high level in just about every outing. He’s got good size which could mean another jump into 2023 and the feel to spin is progressing a ton.

Brayden Bergman, OF/RHP, Parker, Texas
Bergman is a really physical two-way who has made big impressions on both sides of the ball this year, a good reason why he’s well inside the top-200 prospects in the class at this point. He’s got serious strength in the right-handed swing with a heavy barrel and the ability to lean on baseballs to all parts of the field, while the strength shows in the arm, having been up to 92 with some feel to pitch and ability to overwhelm hitters. There are some things that could be cleaned up with more reps and he could be one we see continue to climb on a national scale.

Most Likely to Lead the Region in Home Runs in 2023:

Nehomar Ochoa Acosta, OF, Houston, Texas

It has become a bit of the norm to see balls sent beyond the walls of Premier when Ochoa is in attendance, and although he’ll only have the spring to do it, there’s a good shot he can still lead the region in long balls in early 2023. He hit seven home runs on the PG circuit in 2022, a really ridiculous number considering it was in just over 100 at-bats. He’s physically gifted at 6-foot-4, 210 pounds and the swing is so easily geared toward lifting the baseball with huge impact as he's got some of the biggest strength of anyone in the country, regardless of what grad class.

Blake Mitchell, C, Sinton, Texas
Mitchell is one of the country’s top all-around prospects and it’s for plenty good reason. A PG All-American a few months back, the left-handed hitting backstop has a beautiful stroke from the left side of the plate with looseness, big bat speed and loads of impact strength, and the consistency in which he’s able to leverage the baseball with jump is reason why he’s likely to produce the long ball in bunches. He hit seven bombs last spring for Texas’ 4A state champion Sinton, and in addition to throwing upper-90s gas on the mound, he should hit more in 2023.

Elbert Craig, 1B, Mansfield, Texas
Craig was second to only one person in terms of home runs from the 2024 class in PG events this year, Matt Scott, who is listed below, and there’s really no reason to think he won’t be up there again in 2023. He’s got potentially the biggest raw strength of any high school player in the country right now in his 6-foot-4, 220-pound frame and he’s really athletic at that size, turning in a 6.8 run time and showing it in how he moves in game. He produces triple-digit exit velocities with his impact in controlled settings and in game action, and if he can figure out how to leverage like some others with less strength can, he could hit double digit bombs next year.

Matthew Scott II, OF, Spring, Texas
There’s a chance no one in the country at the high school level hit as many home runs as Scott did in total last year, across the entirety of different events, and he hit an impressive eight just in his handful of PG events, leading the 2024 class. He’s both physical and athletic at 6-foot-4, 195 pounds and there’s obvious strength that comes with hitting that many, but there’s still a good bit more to tap into here that could lead to even bigger long ball numbers. He knows how to get the ball in the air and if the consistency of the bat-to-ball steps up, it could be a huge ‘23.