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High School | General | 1/27/2021

HS Team Breakdowns: 21-30

Tyler Russo         Colton Olinger         Vincent Cervino        
Photo: Jackson Jobe (Perfect Game)
2021 High School Baseball Preview

HS Team Breakdowns: 50-41 | 40-31

21. Prosper Eagles (Tex.)
2020 Record:
11-2
Notable Standout(s):
SS Chase Pendley (Baylor), RHP Lucas Davenport (Texas A&M), C Easton Carmichael (Oklahoma), OF Jacob Devenny (Rice), RHP Clay Kindiger, 2B Case Pettis (Hill College)

A program that has been a staple competitor in the state’s largest classification looks primed to once again make a run at their first state title since 2015. Senior Chase Pendley should be the pace-setter of the lineup as he is coming off a strong year on the travel ball circuit where he hit nearly .400, including eight doubles and three bombs in just under 70 at-bats. Junior Easton Carmichael handles the catching duties and should be the top underclass bat for the Eagles, while guys like senior Case Pettis and underclassmen Jacob Devenny, Austin Wallace, Owen Brown and Austin Rogers help give the lineup some depth. Physical right-hander Lucas Davenport should serve as the staff ace having been into the low-90s already, while senior Clay Kindiger has seen good strides in his stuff and should see some important innings this spring.

22. Doral Academy Firebirds (Fla.)
2020 Record:
6-5
Notable Standout(s): OF/LHP Renzo Gonzalez (Miami), OF Gabriel Gutierrez (Miami), 1B Marcus Franco, OF Edgardo Villegas (Miami), RHP Evan Demurias (North Carolina A&T), 3B Jake Santos, RHP Nicholas Fraginals (NC State), LHP Frank Menendez (Miami), OF Keanu Rodriguez (Miami), SS Manuelle Marin (Miami)

Any program that loses multiple Division-I commitments to graduation shouldn’t have the kind of depth that this roster has, but the South Florida-based Doral Academy is set up to have one of the deepest lineups in the country. Physical hitters Renzo Gonzalez, Marcus Franco and Jake Santos should guide run production while outfielders Gabriel Gutierrez, Edgardo Villegas and Keanu Rodriguez bring speed and athleticism to the lineup. The question mark to success will more than likely be on the mound, but seniors Evan Demurias, Nicholas Fraginals and the formerly mentioned Gonzalez bring experienced innings while underclassman Frank Menendez has the stuff now to get outs at a high level. Look for other names like Anthony Bordone, Andre Vidal, Jake Gorelick and talented freshman Manuelle Marin to be the rest of the pieces needed to give the Firebirds a real chance at chasing what is always a difficult state title.

23. Houston County Bears (Ga.)
2020 Record: 6-6
Notable Standout(s): RHP Brodie Chestnutt (Florida State), RHP Coleman Willis (Georgia), OF Treyson Hughes (West Virginia), OF Gage Harrelson (Texas Tech), RHP Andrew Dunford, OF Drew Burress, OF Elijah Lewis (Barton)

After back-to-back years in the elite eight, and four years removed from a state title, the Bears had a so-so start to the shortened spring, but losing just a few players to graduation, this roster comes back containing many of the same talented athletes from a year ago, including many that saw that success in their first couple years with the program. Seniors Brodie Chestnutt and Coleman Willis will serve as the one-two punch atop the rotation as both are physical right-handers who have already been up into the low-90s, while sophomore Andrew Dunford could be in line to play a relief/third-starter role as the season progresses. Athletic outfielders Treyson Hughes, Gage Harrelson and Elijah Lewis should hit right around the top of the order, while underclassman Drew Burress could join them as he has success on the travel ball circuit that should translate well to his now second year on the Houston County campus.

24. Station Camp Bison (Tenn.)
2020 Record:
N/A
Notable Standout(s): LHP Ryan Ginther (Vanderbilt), RHP Jalen Wirtz (Middle Tennessee State)

A team that was set to be loaded with a trio of talented senior arms this spring will be down one as Chase Burns transferred out to finish his senior year elsewhere, but the duo that remains put the Bison very much in a position to pitch their way to a successful year. PG All-American Ryan Ginther is one of the country’s top left-handers as he has been up to 94 with electric arm speed and a slider that misses a ton of bats. He’s paired at the top of the rotation with projectable right-hander Jalen Wirtz who has come along well over the last couple years and should serve as the respective number two. It will be a collective effort for the offense this year as many of the graduates from last year were performers on the offensive end, but guys like Ginther give the offense a boost as well with his type of experience being priceless.

25. Phillips Academy Big Blues (Mass.)
2020 Record:
N/A
Notable Standout(s): OF Jonathan Santucci (Duke), SS Jack Penney (Notre Dame), LHP Anthony Joya (Cal State Fullerton), RHP Matthew Sapienza (Georgetown), LHP Thomas White, OF Sebastian Mexico (Fordham)

As an established program in the Northeast, Phillips Academy has no problem reloading talent from year to year and this is another in that line. After not playing a single game in the spring last year, this group of seniors is undoubtedly antsy to get on the field. Outfielder Jonathan Santucci has been widely regarded as one of the more talented two-ways in the country and should lead this team on both sides of the ball. Fellow seniors Jack Penney and Sebastian Mexico will both be important pieces in the lineup while an array of arms will make up the staff. Left-hander Anthony Joya has been into the low-90s while Matthew Sapienza nears right around the mark with guys like Jacob Lapp, Jake Needham and two-way Josh Keevan also in the mix for innings. Add in the fact that they have one of the best sophomores the prep ranks has ever seen in lefthander Thomas White and you have depth on both sides of the ball with the experience to rack up wins against what looks to be a talented Northeast region.

26. Hoover Buccaneers (Ala.)
2020 Record:
14-4
Notable Standout(s): OF Evan Radford (Southern Miss), C Lucas Steele (Samford), 3B Walter Ford (Alabama), MIF RJ Hamilton (Vanderbilt), RHP Austin Cornelius (Jacksonville State), RHP Marcus Locklear

The Buccaneers are another one of the mainstays in the national spotlight and seem to always be competing for a state title in their home state of Alabama. After a hot start to the 2020 campaign, they’ll lose most of the top of their order to graduation but have quality players lined up to replace them. Senior Evan Radford will patrol the outfield and hit in the heart of the order, while underclassmen Lucas Steele, Walter Ford and RJ Hamilton should all slot into important offensive spots. On the mound, there’s good depth coming back as they plan to get extended innings from Austin Cornelius and Marcus Locklear with two-way talent Walter Ford expected to bring his low-90s fastball to the mound in some facet. There’s enough experience here to make a deep run, but it will be the play of their younger athletes that impacts the most.

27. Malvern Prep Friars (Penn.)
2020 Record:
N/A
Notable Standout(s): OF Lonnie White (Penn State), RHP Fran Oschell (Duke), SS Cam Conley (Pepperdine), 1B Drew Kennedy

A blue blood in recent memory in the Northeast, the Friars have racked up six state titles in the last eight seasons including three in a row prior to the shortened spring last year. Now two years removed from that time, the sophomores that contributed to that title win are seniors now and are primed to win another. Outfielder Lonnie White is regarded as one of the most athletic prospects in the country while right-hander Fran Oschell, who should serve as the staff ace, has been clocked into the low-90s and has great strikeout numbers to date. While those two may have been the most impactful players on that roster two years ago, they weren’t the only ones to make an impact as fellow seniors Cam Conley, Josh Smith, Peter Kern, Billy Breslin and Connor Street all played a part and will round out what should be an experienced roster.

28. Heritage Hall Chargers (Okla.)
2020 Record:
4-0
Notable Standout(s): RHP/SS Jackson Jobe (Ole Miss), RHP Gray Thomas (TCU), OF Austin Lemon (Oklahoma State)

Any time a roster contains two players that were selected to our annual All-American Classic, it is one that gets our attention, but when both of those prospects are right-handers who can run it into the mid-90s, it is especially interesting from the aspect of a state title run. Jackson Jobe, an athlete who made a transition to a primary pitcher this summer after getting up to 96 with what may be the classes’ best slider, can carry the roster with a mix of what he can do on the mound and with the bat. His counterpart, Gray Thomas, is physical and works comfortably in the low-90s with a pair of breaking balls that net him high swing-and-miss numbers. Fellow senior Colby Lewis and underclassmen Brigham Evans and Austin Lemon should each play parts in the lineup, but if the duo of Jobe and Thomas can do what they have in the past, the Chargers could have a date with a state title at the end of the spring.

29. Eastlake Titans (Calif.)
2020 Record: 6-1
Notable Standout(s): SS Marcelo Mayer (USC), RHP Ray Cebulski (Long Beach State), 3B Michael Rocha, C Nico Libed (San Diego), OF/LHP Ethan Lizama

A program that wins a lot out on the West Coast, Eastlake once again has a star who could put them in a position to end the season on a win. Senior shortstop Marcelo Mayer fits every bit the mold of the SoCal prep that we have seen go early in the first-year player draft and that kind of athlete can be as impactful as any. He’s solid on the dirt, making the shortstop position look effortless at times, an important piece to success at the high school level, while having shown as one of the most consistent hitters the prep ranks have to offer. Fellow senior Ray Cebulski has the stuff to be the ace of the staff while Ethan Lizama has the two-way talent to see significant innings. Lizama and Mayer are joined in the lineup by underclassmen Michael Rocha and Nico Libed, two pieces in what will need to be a collective effort by the lineup to offset what may be a down year on the mound.

30. Winder-Barrow Bulldogs (Ga.)
2020 Record:
11-4
Notable Standout(s): SS Brady House (Tennessee), OF Andrew Lewis III, C Andreus Lewis II, 3B Brooks House

Having to replace the offensive production that they lost from their graduating class is no small task, but a pairing of brothers, three of which are seniors, could be what they need to make another deep playoff run. With four straight trips to the Sweet 16 in one of Georgia’s tougher classifications prior to the shutdown spring last year, the program knows what it is like to win. Brady House leads the way as one of the country’s top high school prospects and his ability to hit with the kind of power he possesses is as good as you get at this level. Fellow seniors Andrew Lewis III and Andreus Lewis II have both put up good offensive numbers throughout their career and will be relied upon with underclassman Brooks House to be the protectors of the older House in the lineup. The program loses a big chunk of their innings on the mound from last season, but all four mentioned for their offensive prowess here have talent on the mound as well with Brady being able to work into the mid-90s and the other in at least the mid- to upper-80s. 

 

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