Tournaments | Story | 7/26/2017

PG World Series Day 2 Notes

Jheremy Brown         Vincent Cervino        
Photo: Perfect Game

Day 1 Notes
14u PG World Series: Daily Leaders
| Player Stats
15u PG World Series: Daily Leaders
 | Player Stats

Cayden Wallace (2020, Greenbrier, Ark.), a physically built, broad shouldered third baseman from Arkansas, has a track record of success with his most recent performance coming at the 17u Perfect Game World Series where he hit .385, despite being one the younger players in attendance. The success hasn’t gone unnoticed by college recruiters as they were out in force for the Rawlings Arkansas Prospects’ first two pool games thanks to the plethora of talent, led by the uncommitted Wallace.

Day 1 of the 15u World Series proved to be business as usual for Wallace as he picked up a base hit in each of his two games, both of which registered 95 mph-plus off the barrel.  In game one Wallace went deep to center field with an extra-base hit that registered 95 mph off the barrel and traveled and estimated 348 feet per TrackMan. Though his next base hit was “just” a single, it was nearly as impressive as the 6-foot-1, 200-pound Wallace connected for a screaming line drive just over the shortstop’s head, registering 99 mph off the barrel. Though there is some tilt to his barrel at the start of his swing, Wallace is more than strong enough to generate next-level bat speed through the zone despite just getting ready to enter his sophomore season on high school.

Whichever college coach is lucky enough to land Wallace will be getting a potential two-way player in the No. 12 ranked Wallace who tossed three innings of relief against the Georgia Jackets. He showed big arm strength out of the gate, sitting the in the 87-89 mph range courtesy of a short and quick arm stroke. Despite being a secondary pitcher, Wallace showed comfort in creating angle to his glove side and the athleticism to change his arm slot from a more three-quarters release down to sidearm and still touched 84 mph while providing hitters a different look.

Having just turned 14 years older earlier this month, righthander Christian Little (2021, St. Louis, Mo.) turned in one of the more impressive pitching performances you’ll find at the 14U level as the pitchability was off the charts, as was his command and feel for all three pitches. At 6-foot-2, 155-pounds with long limbs and a high waist, the projection is enormous for Little, though college coaches are already enticed, especially after his one-hit complete game shutout performance last night against a talented Elite Squad team.

Little’s ability to repeat his mechanics, from his gather to his drive to his release point, is uncanny for a player his age yet that’s just what he did from the opening frame to his final pitch, No. 84 on the night. With balance and athleticism Little pounded the strike zone with his fastball, living at the knees and peaking 84 mph early while working in the 80-83 mph through the seventh inning. He more than once harnessed the late running life and spilled it back over to his glove side for called strikes against righthanded hitters and showed no problem challenging hitters in.

Whether it was his fastball, curveball or changeup, Little showed the comfort in going to any of three regardless the count and more than once landed his curveball for the first and final strike of an at-bat. Showing the same clean and hidden arm stroke through the back, Little’s curveball offers consistent 12-6 shape with good spin and though thrown in the upper-60s, it’s a pitch that shows promising potential. The most feel in regards to his arsenal was for his changeup, a firmer offering that worked into the upper-70s but mimicked his fastball well and was a near automatic strike whenever he went to the pitch.

Brock Daniels (2021, Chesterfield, Mo.), a rather recent Missouri commit, hits atop the lineup for the Midwest Prospects and showed intriguing tools from both sides of the ball. A 6-foot, 150-pound shortstop, Daniels showed his range up the middle on a slowly chopped ball in front of the bag, coming across while making the accurate off-balance throw to complete the play. He also picked up his first extra-base hit of the tournament last night and did so early, doubling to deep right field in his first at-bat of the game. His swing is a balanced once and his hands are easy while generating leverage to his path and as he continues to fill out and develop physically, there’s no reason to think the strength in his bat won’t continue to come along as well.

It was a quick look at righthander Ethan Wood (2021, Lebanon, Ky.) but a crucial one for the Tri-State Arsenal as the young Louisville commit came in out of the bullpen to extinguish a two on, no out threat while keeping the pitch limits in mind. Working just an inning and a third, Wood recorded all four outs via punch out, including three straight out of the bullpen to thwart the BPA threat.

At 6-foot-5, 205-pounds, the current No. 5 player in the class of 2021 came out pumping his fastball as he ran the pitch up to 89 mph and sat comfortably in the 86-88 range for the entire first inning. With a long, whip-like arm action through the back, Wood was able to generate the velocity with ease, a scary thought for opposing hitters as he’s only going to continue to add to his heater as he fill outs and refines his delivery. When everything was on time for Wood he was able to pound to his glove side with short, but steady, running life and was in pure attack mode as he threw nothing but his fastball. There’s a chance he starts later in the tournament though having an arm like Wood out of the bullpen is crucial as well for reasons he demonstrated in last night’s jam.

Liam Norris (2020, Cary, N.C.) didn’t have his best command yesterday but he still checks a lot of boxes college recruiters look for a young prospect, the biggest of which may be the fact he throws with his left hand. Physically built at 6-foot-3, 195-pounds, Norris worked two innings out of the Team Elite bullpen and closed out the victory, tossing zeroes while running his fastball up to 89 mph. His arm action is quick through the back and creates angle to his glove side from a high three-quarters release, which when on time creates nice plane with short running life. His curveball shows the potential to develop into a difference making pitch as he spins a hard one up to 74 mph with tight rotation and late biting life.

It has been talked about before and probably will be again in the near future but the defensive play of Robert Moore (2020, Leaswood, Kan.) is very advanced for his age, as are his actions and ability to execute the difficult play, making them look routine. Though he’s not overly physical at 5-foot-9, 155-pounds, the switch-hitting, uncommitted Moore shows the prerequisite range at shortstop, along with the silky smooth hands, to be able to stick at the premium position at the next level. One play in particular that stood out was on a double play turn which Moore started and had the ball out of his glove before it even seemed to enter with a lightning fast transfer and quality positioning of his feet.

The Perfect Game World Series always brings in the top talent from around the country, including the Pacific Northwest with the Baseball Northwest program who brought with them righthander Jaren Hunter (2020, Demascus, Ore.). Making just his second appearance in a Perfect Game event, Hunter has seen an uptick in his stuff since last summer where he was topping out at 84 mph to present day, bumping into the upper-80s yesterday afternoon.

At a lean and projectable 6-foot, 160-pounds, Hunter did a nice job of working on top of the baseball and generating plane while showing a quick, loose arm action through the back. Uncommitted, Hunter lived in the mid- to upper-80s with his fastball, peaking at 88 mph with consistent cut action through the zone, and keep his entire arsenal down in the zone. His changeup, thrown in the 77-79 mph range, offered nice tumbling action out of the hand and has the feel to turn it over while curveball features short depth in the mid-70s.

We’ve written about Kyle Teel’s (2020, Upper Saddle River, N.J.) athleticism before and how he’s capable of suiting up behind the plate or starting up the middle, but his lefthanded bat is going to be a tool that continues to make noise through his high school career. Both his hands and overall swing are loose and he shows no problem working all fields and does so with some juice, despite being listed at 6-foot, 160-pounds. He was held hitless in his team’s first game against Team Elite but still connected for a solid piece to the opposite field before collecting four RBI in the next game with two hits, including a single in which he stayed on a lefthanded curveball and lined it into right field.

It wasn’t the longest of looks at the young North Carolina State commit as he threw just over four innings, but Coby Ingle (2020, Reidsville, N.C.) did show components to his arsenal that warrant a follow moving forward. Listed at a lean 6-foot-1, 150-pound frame, the projection for Ingle is clear, as is the quickness of his right arm as he’s already able to run his fastball up to 88 mph while living in the 84-86 mph range early on. With a long and clean arm stroke through the back, Ingle did a nice job of working on top of the ball from his higher slot with an on line delivery and showed a pair of secondary pitches which he can throw for strikes. He tends to slow his arm speed prior to release on both his changeup and curveball, an 11-5 shaped pitch with short depth, but shows the feel to throw all three for strikes.

In a brief two-inning look at Jaden Agassi (2020, Las Vegas, Nev.) on the mound, the Perfect Game Select Festival alum continues to add to his fastball and fil out his 6-foot-2 frame, now checking in at 198-pounds and runs his fastball upwards of 88 mph. The ball comes out of his hand both easy and clean and as he continues to lengthen his stride and incorporate additional lower half to his drive, it’s easy to envision the velocity continuing to climb for the uncommitted Nevada native. In his opening frame Agassi worked exclusively off the fastball and did so while creating angle to his glove side and maintained his velocity out of the stretch.

Continuing with the theme of Select Festival alum, both Dylan Crews (2020, Longwood, Fla.) and Michael Brooks (2020, Lake Worth, Fla.) put their righthanded swings and strength on display as both connected for long balls in the Scorpions 11-1 victory. Brooks was the first Scorpion to leave the yard with a high, arching blast over the left-center field fence while Crews’ was more of the line drive variety, leaving the yard in the blink of an eye and registered 95 mph off the barrel and traveled an estimated 375-feet. Henry Politz, a switch-hitting catcher out of Tampa, also got in on the action and delivered a two-run home run off his own a couple batters prior to Crews’ home run.

Patrick Holloman’s (2020, McDonough, Ga.) aptitude and advanced pitchability have been on display throughout the summer and they were once again with fastball command that’s seldom found at the 15U level. At 6-foot-1, 180-pounds, the broad shouldered and uncommitted lefthanded ran his fastball up to 84 mph early in the contest and lived in the 81-83 mph range while keeping a tough East Coast Sox offense at bay.

Staying short and quick through the backside, Holloman shows lots of balance to his delivery, allowing him repeat and pound the strike zone at will. With short running life to his fastball, Holloman did a nice job of moving the ball to either side of the plate with angle and was in command from the first pitch of the game. Up to 86 mph in the past, Holloman’s calling card has been his ability to locate his 72-75 mph curveball with advanced feel, doubling up on the pitch in any count while spotting it down in the zone. He maintains his arm speed nicely on the bender and with the depth he’s able to generate he punched out six in four-plus innings of work.

Jonathan Vaughn (2020, Covina, Calif.) is an interesting athlete and lefthanded bat who needs to be followed closely throughout the duration of the tournament, both due to his 6-foot- 2, 192-pound physical build and his overall skill on the diamond. Showing plenty of intent, Vaughn shows an aggressive approach at the plate and can jump on a pitch early in the count he thinks he can handle, just as he did in his first at-bat in which he lined out hard to the center fielder. Vaughn, a shortstop/third baseman, also showed his arm strength as he lived in the 85-87 mph comfortably, and bumped an 88, generating the velocity while looking as though he were playing a game of catch.

Though he technically didn’t throw in the PG World Series, lefthander Cole Wagner’s (2021, Lewisberry, Pa.) performance in the Summer Showdown was simply too hard to leave out of a daily recap. Nothing about the young Wagner suggests he is just entering high school, from his 5-foot-11, 198-pound, broad shouldered frame to his fastball which he ran up to 86 mph multiple times. And perhaps even more impressive than his 83-86 mph fastball was his ability to pound his heater to either side of the plate, challenging hitters in with intent and more often than not, he won the battle.

With a balanced set of mechanics which he repeats expertly, Wagner shows a compact and fast arm stroke through the back while generating steady plane down in the zone. He pounded the strike zone with his fastball, consistently working ahead in the count which helped unlock his cutter, a pitch that worked 78-81 mph with late life out of the hand. Wagner also flashed an upper-70s changeup which he turned over nicely, giving him a viable three-pitch mix which he had the feel for, something not often found in players who have yet to enter high school.

– Jheremy Brown

Top Tier Americans finished day one of the 15u PG World Series with a win and a tie following their action, and hitters Derek Crum (2019, Tampa, Fla.) and Jackson Miller (2020, Trinity, Fla.) both had strong showings throughout the day.

Crum finished the two games with six combined hits and he showed excellent contact skills throughout the day. The 5-foot-10, 175-outfielder has a strong, athletic build and makes for an ideal leadoff type as he can show you the ability to hit line drives to all fields and use his speed once he gets on base. Crum stole two bases yesterday and he read the pitcher well to get good jumps on both occasions. The swing itself gets through the hitting zone well from more of an even swing plane. There is a deep hip coil but he gets on time consistently and allows him to drive the ball with more authority and torque. Crum’s swing traveled through an inside hand path to the ball but looked best when he was able to turn on inside pitches and get the barrel out in front.

A recent Wake Forest commit, Miller showed why he is one of the more polished hitters for his class with an excellent showing at the plate. The 5-foot-11, 175-pound backstop demonstrated excellent barrel control and plate coverage throughout the day as Miller was able to square up any pitch no matter the pitch-type or location. The delivery is very balanced with a wide overall base and he gets his hands moving with a bat wag before the load. The swing itself shows good bat speed through the hitting zone and is very short to the ball. Miller was dialed-in for most of the day as even if he wasn’t in ideal hitter’s counts he was able to spoil good pitches and wait until the pitcher offered a mistake. The contact was loud line drives up the middle and one at-bat that stood out saw him fight from an 0-2 count to take a pitch well off the outside and have the strength in his wrists to drive the ball back up the middle. The arm strength also stood out behind the plate as he threw out two runners in the seventh inning of Top Tier’s first game to help quell any rally by the opposition.

One of the more dominating pitching performances from the early slots on Tuesday came from rigthhander Ryan Zimmer (2020, Saint Clair, Mich.) as he tossed six shutout innings that culminated in a victory for the Motor City Hit Dogs. The primary catcher stands with an ideal frame for a pitcher at 6-foot-3, 180-pounds with room to add more strength as he continues to develop. It is rare for a secondary arm to show the poise and repertoire that Zimmer did, however he located well with his fastball and showed a feel for three pitches.

The Michigan native attacked hitters primarily with his fastball that worked in the low- to mid-80s and topped out at 85 mph on the morning. Zimmer located the pitch well to both sides and the arm action was consistent with a soft stab near the back of the delivery. He showed good feel for both the curveball and changeup on Tuesday morning and showed a strong overall skill set that projects well for the future. He racked up nine strikeouts and allowed only one hit throughout his performance and should continue to improve.

Showing well throughout the day was the shortstop for Baseball Northwest Kenji Suzuki (2020, Seattle, Wash.). The infielder showed good athleticism and actions as well as intriguing hitting tools to make for a nice overall package of a prospect. The 6-foot, 180-pound Washington native showed quality actions out at shortstop with smoothness to his hands and the ability to range to both sides well. He made a couple of twitchy plays that highlighted his athleticism and warrants more looks at the position. Offensively, he had a quality day racking up multiple hits and showing a short, quick bat path. The swing was highlighted by his quick hands which were direct to the ball and although there were times he would lose plane he showed the ability to make adjustments and make hard contact.

Academy Select had a strong day with two victories and Dakota Britt (2020, Perry, Ga.) stood out during game one thanks to his offensive performance. Britt has numerous positions listed on his profile and his athleticism allows for the versatility, however on Tuesday he played first base during Academy Select’s 13-0 victory. The lefthanded hitter shows a fluid swing path with some bat speed through the zone. The approach was line drive-oriented and he showed good, natural loft throughout the swing path. He connected on multiple hits which included a double late in the game that he was able to drive to the pull side of the field. Britt’s bat projects very well with an advanced overall approach and his ability to cover the plate without sacrificing solid contact bodes well for future at-bats.

Another talented arm who took the hill on Tuesday afternoon was Alejandro Cazorla (2020, Surrey, British Columbia) as the two-way player has stood out over the tournament for his work as a position player but added a new wrinkle in the profile on the mound. There is pretty good athleticism to the overall 5-foot-10, 160-pound frame with good physical projection remaining. He lifts the ball well at the plate through a line drive oriented swing path and showed solid actions in the field. His time on the mound showed that he was a bit raw as a pitching prospect, however there was plenty of promise during the game on Tuesday. Cazorla held his velocity throughout the outing in the 82-84 mph range and threw from a tight three-quarters arm slot. There is some arm wrap but he gets it through the path cleanly and on time. The fastball showed good life to it and the overall profile is very interesting moving forward.

Brandon Hudson (2021, Waxhaw, N.C.) got the nod for the Dirtbags on Tuesday afternoon and his two-way potential shone through yet again. He didn’t have his longest outing on the mound, a bit short of three innings, but the stuff was pretty effective as the fastball was yet again up to 86 mph and worked in the low- to mid 80s for the majority of the game with consistent downhill plane. The curveball showed 12/6 shape to it with occasional sharpness low in the zone. The fastball was the pitch of choice, however, as it was best when he could get ahead of the count and use the offering out of the zone for chases. Hudson also launched a home run early in the game that left the bat at 93 mph and gave the Dirtbags the early lead. There is definite raw power in the 6-foot-3, 170-pound frame and he projects well with the bat and on the mound going forward.

With younger prospects there are certain qualities that scouts look for when projecting players for the future and righthander Owen Flynn (2021, Windermere, Fla.) checks a lot of those boxes. The 6-foot-1, 160-pound pitcher has extremely long limbs with a lean overall build and throws with very little effort: all aspects which bode well for the future. Flynn has a full and easy arm action and worked well with his combination of fastball and his overall feel to spin the ball. The fastball worked up to 85 mph early on before settling in comfortably in the low-80s. He gets on top of the ball well which allowed him the ability to create plane although not on a consistent basis. The curveball flashed very good potential as the offering worked in the low-70s and showed solid shape. It would get slurvy at times but the overall profile is very strong heading into his freshman year of high school.

The Banditos have shown that they have a quality arsenal of arms throughout the summer with Albert Hernandez (2020, Davie, Fla.) and Carlos Rodriguez (2021, Miami, Fla.) again driving home the depth of their pitching staff.

Hernandez worked four strong innings on Tuesday evening as he worked in the upper-80s while touching 90 mph early on in the game. The delivery highlights the strength throughout the frame and the arm with quick, direct movements and the ability to power the fastball by opposing hitters. Hernandez extends well toward the plate and can work both pitches with a power approach. The arm is quick throughout the path and he attacked hitters primarily with his fastball which he could locate to either side with ease. The breaking ball as in the mid-70s and showed the ability to throw it for strikes and for chases low in the strike zone. The Miami commit’s stuff was as nasty as ever and his performance was strong.

Rodriguez was his usual self as well with a fastball that touched as high as 91 mph. He showed a similar mentality to Hernandez on the mound in terms of running his fastball at hitters and daring them to try and square it up. The arm is quick with advanced speed and strength toward the plate and the Miami commit throws with intent. He mixed pitches well but again the overall poise and repertoire on the mound makes him a standout prospect for the 2021 class.

Some of the top arms in the class got the final time slot on Tuesday night with one of those arms being Elite Squad’s Timothy Manning (2020, Pompano Beach, Fla.). The lefthander is one of the more projectable arms in the class with a very fast arm and a lean 6-foot-1, 170-pound frame.

The Florida commit was very impressive in three innings of work with a short and deceptive arm action and a high leg lift above the belt. He stays tall through his backside and works well down the mound as the batter cannot read the ball until it is about to come out of the hand. There is an element of controlled violence that Manning uses well to propel himself down the mound but still remain in control through his landing.

The fastball touched 87 mph early on and he maintained a 83-86 mph range throughout. The pitch had very good life to it with good run in seemingly any direction. The command was also good of not only the fastball but all three pitches. The changeup was used sparingly but the curveball was a legitimate weapon of a pitch. Manning’s curveball worked in the low- to mid-70s and showed good shape, mostly 1-to-7, with depth as well. The pitch would loosen up from time to time but mostly had spin rates in the 2600-2700 rpm range.

Jordan Carrion (2020, Miami, Fla.) got the start at shortstop for Elite Squad and was one of many members contributing to the big 9-2 victory on Tuesday night. Another Florida commit, Carrion is very athletic with a high-end bat to work well offensively as well. The swing is short with natural loft throughout the path and he is able to work with a line drive approach to all fields. He drove a double to the opposite field during the game and showed off his speed too, registering a 4.44 second time to first on the turn. His athleticism and actions in the infield are outstanding and although he wasn’t challenged much on Tuesday night, the draw of a strong bat to go along with an impact defender are very intriguing.

FTB dropped their second game of Tuesday and although they lost, Anthony Shaver (2020, Clermont, Fla.) showed off the potential in his bat early in the game. Shaver has a strong and physical frame at 6-foot-1, 190-pounds, however still is very projectable as is the bat. There is plenty of bat speed and lift in the swing and he showed good plate coverage on Tuesday night. Shaver stayed with an outside pitch and drove it to the opposite field gap for a run-scoring triple. The batted ball left the bat at 90 mph and that kind of strength to the opposite field is rare at this age. The power has been shown before and Shaver is one of the more advanced hitters in the class.

– Vinnie Cervino

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