Tournaments | Story | 10/7/2019

Underclass World Day 4 Notes

Jheremy Brown         Brian Sakowski         Vincent Cervino         Greg Gerard         Jered Goodwin         Nate Schweers         Jerry Miller        
Photo: Sal Stewart (Perfect Game)

2019 WWBA Underclass World Championship
Daily Leaders
 | Day 1 Scout Notes | Day 2 Scout Notes | Day 3 Scout Notes

Casey Cook (2021, Chantilly, N.C.) proved to be one of the true standouts around JetBlue throughout Sunday morning and afternoon, helping to propel his Stars Baseball team into the semifinals Monday morning. With a North Carolina commitment already secured, the 6-foot 170-pound lefthanded hitting shortstop did it all over the three victories, both with the stick as well as on the mound with a complete game victory over East Cobb.

After a relatively quiet game one from an offensive standpoint, Cook came out swinging in the second game, twice finding the barrel in each of his first two at-bats and did so with relative ease despite what the opposing pitcher was throwing. Staying smooth and linear with his stroke, Cook showed no hesitations in going with a middle-away 86 mph fastball into left field for a line drive single showing quickness through the zone and solid jump off the barrel. In his next trip to the plate we were able to see the leverage he brings to the table as he turned on a fastball to his pull side gap for a three-base hit, clearing the bases in the process.

Jump to the final game of the day and Cook pulled two-way duties as he ran his fastball up to 88 mph early on, settling in at 82-84 mph for the duration while creating short sinking life from an extended slot. He mixed a sweeping breaking ball in throughout the outing to keep hitters off balance, working into the low-70s while adding and subtracting on the pitch. And in case a complete game victory on the mound weren’t enough he also connected for the eventual game winning hit, lining a double to the opposite field gap as a part of a two-hit game.

Zachary Lewis (2021, Winston Salem, N.C.) took the mound for the Dirtbags Bad Company and the Wake Forest commit showed some things to like on the mound despite the final line. Employing a longer arm stroke through the back, Lewis brings plenty of arm speed to the mound with him and though he was mistimed with his release early in the contest, when everything was in sync the ball jumped out of his hand, sitting in the 85-88 mph range with occasional cut action. The difference maker from the start for Lewis however was the curveball, a true swing-and-miss type offering in the mid-70s, spinning it very well with hard, downer action and late bate to the bottom of the zone.

Radek Birkholz (2021, Highlands Ranch, Colo.) made the trip out from Colorado and got the start for the East Cobb Astros on the mound for the Round of 32. While he didn’t have the type of upper-80s velocity he has shown in the back in this outing, he was still in control for each of his three frames, striking out five while allowing just one base hit. The uncommitted Birkholz lived comfortably within the 83-86 mph range with his fastball, remaining on-line with his arm stroke while working across his body, allowing for solid angle as he repeatedly located to his glove side. His curveball served as the go-to secondary offering for Birkholz, showing some depth to it when on top though the velocity did vary anywhere between 67 and 72 mph.

Aidan Corn (2021, Nokomis, Fla.) put together a nice weekend at the plate for the Florida Burn 2021 Platinum, finishing the tournament with a .545 average of their four games while saving some of his loudest contact for the final game. Hitting in the three-hole for the Burn, Corn connected for one of the loudest and furthest hit balls on the afternoon, turning on a fastball while displaying nice lift to his path for a no-doubt home run to his pull side.

Joseph Valchar (2021, Wake Forest, N.C.) made his second appearance of the tournament on the mound for the Dirtbags Prospects and though he didn’t quite show the velocity he did on day one, he did a nice job of filling up the zone for his lone inning of work. A primary third baseman per his profile who is making a transition onto the mound, there’s no doubting the arm strength Valchar shows, running his fastball up to 89 mph on Thursday while sitting in the mid-80s Sunday afternoon. Given that he’s still a primary position player it’s easy to envision he’ll continue to refine his lower half mechanics and drive with additional reps though the arm strength and his ability to generate life to his arm side already stand out. He also shows a pair of secondary offerings already with a mid-70s slider with short 10-4 shape though it was his changeup he picked up a strikeout with at 73 mph that might be his best off-speed, showing a mimicked release point and late fading life down to his arm side.

The final line may not jump out for uncommitted righthander Nick Remy (2021, Atkinson, N.H.) as he was scattered with his overall command throughout his three innings of work, but there are definite ingredients to monitor as he continues to develop his timing on the mound. Remy immediately jumps out for his physical build, a young and long limbed 6-foot-4, 175 pounds that’ll only continue to add strength moving forward. There’s already present quickness to his arm stroke, working to an over-the-top slot which produced a top fastball of 88 mph and sat in the 85-87 mph range while settling a couple ticks lower for the final two frames. When everything was in sync and on time Remy was able to generate nice plane to his fastball which jumped out of his hand and showed some life to his arm side. He also flashed some good spin on his 73-74 mph curveball, offering 11-5 shape and downer depth to the pitch.

-Jheremy Brown

The MLB Breakthrough Series club tore through the playoff action on Sunday, winning three straight games to advance to the final four, to be played Monday morning. They took down US Elite 2021 early on by a score of 4-1, getting an excellent performance from Michigan commit Tyler Fullman (2021, Homewood, Ill.) on the mound. Fullman, a strong, physical righthander, allowed just one walk over his four frames, picking up five strikeouts and throwing strikes at a 65 percent clip. He pitches primarily off of his fastball, touching 90 mph a few times early on and settling into the 85-89 mph range for the most part. The pitch features tremendous heaviness and “bowling ball sink”, as it’s sometimes called in scouting circles; as he was content to simply pound the bottom part of the zone with the fastball to both sides of the plate, missing bats and getting a lot of weak contact as well. There’s the beginnings of a solid slider there as well, thrown in the mid-70s with flashes of sharpness to the bite, and the pitch projects to miss bats as he continues refining and growing more comfortable with it.

The second game of the day for Breakthrough came against Hit Factory Pro, and while the game was very close for 4.5 innings, a five-run fifth frame for Breakthrough busted it open, and allowed them to cruise to victory. Robert Evans (2021, Bronx, N.Y.) got the win for Breakthrough, scattering five hits and a single unearned run over his five frames, picking up four strikeouts and walking no one. A solid-sized lefty, Evans creates big time angle to the plate from a very extended three quarters slot, and pounds the zone with his fastball from an easy delivery. He worked in the 82-86 mph range with his fastball, really challenging hitters on either side of the plate, and while he doesn’t overpower quite yet, he has very good feel for pitching, as evidenced by his ability to move the ball around the zone, avoid the barrel, and get consistently weak contact. He lands a slurvier-shaped breaker for strikes, and demonstrates a solid idea of a changeup to righthanded hitters. He’s uncommitted at this time.

Jack Cebert (2021, Tampa, Fla.) got the start for Hit Factory Pro, and while he took the loss, still pitched quite well. A slender righthander committed to Stetson, Cebert has always thrown a ton of strikes, and continued that in this outing, pounding the zone at a 72 percent clip. The mechanical operation is pretty clean, allowing him to repeat his delivery and consistently throw those strikes at a high rate. He ran his fastball up to 87 mph with good heaviness to the pitch, settling into the mid-80s, and certainly projects to throw harder as he gains strength moving forward. He lands a big-breaking curveball for strikes in the upper-60s, and there is some deception to the operation as well. Cebert projects well in all facets as he fills out his frame, and with the present pitchability already a plus to his profile, the upside is substantial projecting out a few years.

The No. 5-ranked player in the class of 2022, Elijah Green (2022, Windermere, Fla.) is ranked so highly thanks to a combination of tools and athleticism, and he’s continued to put those on display all weekend here. A lithe, athletically-built outfielder who is an early commit to Miami, Green has substantial tools in his bat speed, raw speed, and arm strength from the outfield. In the playoff game versus Hit Factory, Green picked up a pair of knocks, including a loud line drive double up the left-center field gap, and immediately put his instincts and explosiveness on display by anticipating a pitch in the dirt and advancing to third base quickly. In the grand scheme of things, advancing to third base on a bounced fastball isn’t necessarily a loud thing, though the anticipatory instincts Green showed by taking off before the ball landed, the explosive twitch of his first step, and then the speed in which he got to third base all stood out as loud and advanced in the view of this evaluator. He’s going to be extremely fun to watch over the course of his development.

Breakthrough continued to roll in the quarterfinals, taking down the Richmond Braves 5-0 to advance to the semifinals. Aaron Calhoun (2021, Pearland, Texas) picked up the win on the mound, going five scoreless while scattering three hits and a walk, striking out five. Calhoun, a slender, lean righthander with lots of projection, just did what most Breakthrough pitchers did this weekend: Pound the strike zone to great effect. He ran his fastball up to 87 mph early, settling into the mid-80s, generating a fair bit of arm side life with command to both sides of the plate at times. The curveball is a big bender that he lands for strikes, and he was content to just hammer fastballs inside on hitters and allow his extremely talented defense to work for him, which they did to great effect. Calhoun is committed to Oklahoma.

-Brian Sakowski

As the sun continued to rise on playoff day at the 2019 WWBA Underclass World Championship, Rocco Reid (2021, Greenville, S.C.) propelled Canes National 17U to a Round of 32 victory with an outstanding performance on the mound. The southpaw allowed just four hits over 4 1/3 innings, striking out seven batters and giving his team a chance to build on a lead. A 6-foot, 168-pound Clemson commit, Reid is a polished left-hander that was able to repeat his mechanics well and throw three pitches for quality strikes.

Coming from the mid three-quarter slot, Reid generated deceptive run to the lively fastball at 85-88 mph on Saturday. Showing excellent command to both sides of the plate, Reid was able to complement the fastball well with a sweeping breaking ball at 76-79. Reid shows the ability to throw the breaking ball both for strikes and as a put-away pitch, and the. No. 103 player in the 2021 class was also able to flash feel for a changeup in the low-80s. With such a polished arsenal and a frame that has room to fill out, I believe the sky is the limit for Reid moving forward.

Over on the field next door at the Century Link Complex was US Elite Mid Atlantic 2021 National outfielder Gabe Mustovic (2021, Mars, Pa.). Mustovic had one of the more impressive swings in the morning’s first time slot, getting his hands extended and driving a double to the pull-side down the left field line. Mustovic has a compact and direct path to contact with some present strength in the 6-foot-2, 180-pound frame. As Mustovic continues to develop physically, I would expect to see the power numbers increase as well.

Moving back over to the all-Canes matchup in the Round of 32, Georgia commit Garrett Madliak (2021, Carrollton, Ga.) turned heads with a loud, run-scoring double to the gap in left-center field. Madliak has present power and projects for more in the 5-foot-10, 170-pound frame, and also does an excellent job of controlling the game defensively behind the plate. Madliak constantly wins pitches for the guy on the mound, and the No. 320 player in the 2021 class certainly shows advanced actions that could make him an immediate impact guy at the next level. With such a fluid swing, Madliak’s barrel control and present bat speed is what allows him to drive the ball to the pull-side with authority.

James Triantos (2022, McLean, Va.) showed off his power as well on Sunday for the Canes. National 16U team. Triantos, who is a North Carolina commit, just missed extra-bases in the early game with a rocket that was run down by the right fielder in the opposite gap. Triantos is a really athletic player that excels on the mound as well, but the primary shortstop caught my eye with his tremendous bat speed and advanced barrel control for the class. Ranked as the No. 28 player in the 2022 class, Triantos has a 6-foot, 180-pound frame that still has plenty of room to fill out and add strength. With all the initial tools of an outstanding hitter, opposing pitchers better be on the lookout as Triantos continues to improve and mature physically.

Joshua Kuroda-Grauer (2021, Somerset, N.J.) put together a strong overall weekend for the Full Count Prospects 17U 2021, and had a chance to put his talents on display in all facets of the game on Sunday. A Rutgers commit, Kuroda-Grauer originally caught my attention with his smooth actions defensively at the shortstop position. A solid game and a couple good swings later it was his turn to take the mound in the Round of 16. The Top-1000 player in the 2021 class ran his fastball up to 86 mph on Saturday, posting a 71 percent strike percentage and showing the ability to locate both the fastball and a slider for strikes. Though the righthander did allow his fair share of hits, he was able to make big pitches when needed to keep his team in the game and keep Canes National 17U off the board too many times. While personally I think his future is in the middle infield, this junior could find himself as a potential two-player in the Big Ten in the future.

Duke commit Gavin Kash (2021, Sour Lake, Texas) was a hitting machine on Sunday, going 3-for-7 with two doubles and three RBI on the day. Kash has a smooth swing from the left side of the plate, showing some pull-side power when connecting. Though the swing-and-miss is high at times, Kash does an excellent job of seeing the ball deep and using the whole field in his approach. With an athletic, 6-foot-4, 210-pound frame, Kash has the room to get bigger and stronger over the next year, leading to the potential for big power form the primary first baseman. Ranked as the No. 62 player in the 2021 class, it will be exciting to see how Kash continues to develop physically moving forward.

Wyatt Lunsford-Shenkman (2021, Leesburg, Va.) closed out the final victory of playoff Sunday for Canes National 17U on Sunday, tossing 2 1/3 scoreless innings. Lunsford-Shenkman allowed just one hit in the outing while striking out a pair. Though the command of the fastball was shaky at times, the righthander ran the fastball up to 89 mph on Sunday, sitting 86-88 a majority of the time. Uncommitted in the 2021 class, Lunsford-Shenkman flashed some run to the arm side at times while also flashing feel to spin a tight slider with late depth at 75-77 mph. Ranked as a Top-500 player in the 2021 class, Lunsford-Shenkman gets the most out of his 6-foot-3, 225-pound frame by creating easy linear direction down the mound and getting good extension over the front side. When the delivery is clean and on time, Lunsford-Shenkman is one of the more enticing uncommitted arms I have seen this weekend.

-Nate Schweers

Longstanding PG participant East Coast Astros 17U club rode solid pitching and timely hitting all the way to the quarterfinals, before finally bowing out. Lefthander Jake Hembree (2023, Hiram, Ga.) twirled four one-hit innings in closing out the Astros 3-0 morning victory over a very talented Dig In club. The long and lean freshman at North Paulding HS, who pitches exclusively from the stretch, uses a three-quarters arm slot and a whippy, deceptive arm action to pound the zone with a heavy sinking two-seam fastball, that sat in the 82-84 mph range throughout his impressive outing. Hembree complimented his active fastball with a tight spinning, 70-72 mph sweeping breaking ball, that showed consistent sharp and late break and was a great swing-and-miss out pitch. The young Georgian has a bright future and the obvious pitching ability to improve as his career unfolds.

LSU commit Carter Jensen (2021, Kansas City, Mo.) displayed his two-way projectable talent throughout the day, turning in a plus day receiving and hitting. The 6-foot-1, 215-pound rock-solid athlete, was one of the tournament’s top catch-and-throw backstops. He calls an advanced game and his enthusiastic, take-charge disposition keeps his defenders, and especially his pitching staff, locked in. He possesses soft hands and an easy catching style. He shuts down opponent running games with a smooth, quick transition, and a quicker trigger, that lets his plus arm play at a highly advanced level. In addition to his notable skills on defense, the Park Hill HS junior is also a gifted lefthanded hitter who swings out of the clean-up spot for the deep Astros lineup. He uses his solid lower half to produce noticeable torque. He is a controlled swinger of the bat who has feel for the barrel. He routinely flashes the ability to consistently hit the ball with gap-to-gap power.

Kaelen Culpepper (2021, Memphis, Tenn.) is the very talented shortstop for the Astros. His defensive ability alone could keep him on the field for just about every team in the tournament. Because he is also a plus offensive player, his total skillset puts him among the very best in his age group. The 5-foot-11, 165-pound athletically built Culpepper is a quick-footed and extremely instinctive shortstop. He shows consistently easy fielding actions, highlighted by his smooth and advanced, almost effortless style. He is a confident thrower of the baseball and always gets his tosses off on time, with plus carry and accuracy. At the dish, he is a foul-line-to-foul-line threat. His flatter bat path and quick, fluid swing, allows the St. Benedict at Auburndale junior to spray balls all over the diamond. His advanced speed and aggressive running style make Culpepper a true multi-tool prospect.

The Astros roster is loaded with a number of talented and driven two-way players. Glenn Green (2021, Tyrone, Ga.) is one of those gifted multi-positional athletes. The 6-foot-2, 185-pound Sandy Creek HS junior is among that group of players who can impact a game in many ways for the East Cobb club. His gritty effort on the mound in third round playoff action helped carry the Astros into the quarterfinals. All Green did was toe the bump, pull his hat down, and grind out six innings. He scattered seven hits and kept a tough Ohio Elite squad at arms-length, as the Astros captured a well-earned 10-3 victory. The solidly-built Green pitched off his plus velocity fastball that was consistently clocked between 86-88 mph and touched 90-mph more than once. He also mixed in a sharp, 12-to-6 breaking, 70-72 mph curveball and a very impressive short, late breaking, 75-77 mph slider. His poise was noteworthy, but his “bulldog” is what impressed many in attendance.

There were many top defensive catchers in this year’s WWBA Underclass Championship. None were more impressive than Ohio Elite’s Conner Stewart (2021, Clinton, Ohio). The 6-foot-2, 193-pound Wadsworth HS backstop calls a mature game and keeps his staff consistently locked in. He impressively guided his pitchers to two 1-0 playoff victories, one of those coming against the tournament’s number one seed, ELEV8, in second round action. Stewart’s catch-and-throw talent certainly projects to the next level.

Jason L'Etoile (2021, Lake Worth, Fla.) helped his club garner the number one seed in the bracketed part of the playoffs. The 6-foot-2, 200-pound lefty is a sweet swinger who has a great feel for the barrel, very strong hands, and a consistent ability to get his bat on plane and through the hitting zone with authority. The American Heritage – Delray Beach junior, is also a gifted first baseman, who shows advanced footwork and soft hands around the bag.

-Jerry Miller

Jay Allen (2021, Fort Pierce, Fla.) is one of the more athletically gifted and physical players playing in the event. Standing at a strong 6-foot-2, 185 pounds, Allen has a powerful righthanded stroke at the plate using a line drive and level swing plane through the hitting zone. The ball jumps in a big way off of Allen’s bat when squared shown by his opposite field home run on Sunday. Allen drove a thigh-high fastball over the fence at Clemente Field at Terry Park showcasing his power to all fields. The two-sport athlete ranges well in the outfield getting good reads to the baseball and glides to track the balls down. Verbally committed to Florida, the Gators have to be excited about a standout star like Allen who finished his day 2-for-3 with a pair of loud barrels.

Jac Caglianone (2021, Tampa, Fla.) was highlighted on Day 1 of Underclass World for the juice present in his bat. Caglianone did not show that in this game, however, the swing has huge raw bat speed present. What Caglianone did display, was his lefthanded arm on the mound. The fastball ranged from 85-88 mph mostly while touching 89 mph once as well. The delivery is a bit raw using a three-quarter arm slot with intent and recoiling at release. He worked around the zone enough and went to his slider as well as his changeup to pitch an efficient pair of innings with four strikeouts. Caglianone is a 6-foot-4 lefthander with a loose arm and some angle created to the plate. He lands entirely across his body creating some deception and makes himself a very tough at-bat for opposing lefthanded hitters. Caglianone worked the fastball north and south primarily with a sweeping slider and sinking changeup.

Bobby Boser (2021, Wesley Chapel, Fla.), a South Florida commit, barreled the baseball in all three of his plate appearances on Sunday. Boser is a righthanded hitting infielder who got the start at third base in this game. Boser started his day with a line drive single to left field, followed that up with a line drive single to center field and then the most impressive barrel came in his third at-bat where he one-hopped the wall to the opposite field for a double. Boser has bat speed through the hitting zone and great hand-eye as shown in this game. The future Bull from Wiregrass Ranch High school had a big day at the plate on Sunday helping FTB/Giants Scout Team earn a run-rule victory.

The box score is not going to show the projection as well as the overall stuff Ryan Rumsey (2021, Cherry Hill, N.J.) brought with him to the mound in a consolation game on Sunday. The Xavier commit put together promising stuff against a loaded lineup in FTB/Giants Scout Team. Rumsey, a righthander, was 84-86 mph with his fastball early using a longer arm action while having to throw a lot of extra pitches due to some unfortunate errors defensively. The 6-foot righty has three pitches at his disposal using the fastball to get ahead in counts and curveball, changeup combination of offspeed pitches that will continue to improve with development.

Tommy Hawke (2021, Pfafftown, N.C.) is a quick-twitch and athletic lefthanded hitter at the top of the Richmond Braves 2021 National order who had a full day to showcase his skillset as the Braves played a triple-header on playoff day. Hawke is a small middle infielder with impressive quickness down the line and range up the middle as well. Listed at 5-foot-8, although looking a bit smaller than that, Hawke was all over the field for the Richmond Braves handling the barrel well collecting four hits on the day giving him nine for the tournament, posting a 4.44 home to first time with a turn and displaying a sure glove and clean transfers before showing accuracy across the diamond from any arm slot. The swing is compact for the Wake Forest commit while staying quick through the zone and executing his all fields contact-oriented approach so well at the top of the Braves lineup.

Top 100 player in the 2022 class Alvin Keels (2022, Portsmouth, Va.) continues to impress this fall with his tools at the plate. The righthanded hitter was the Richmond Braves designated hitter throughout a long day of playoff action. The righthanded swing has huge bat speed that is among the top of the class confirmed by his Diamond Kinetics testing. Keels makes loud contact when on time to the ball shown by a pair of hard ground balls as well as a fly ball double in this game. The righthanded swing is mostly clean with occasional timing constituents combined with his fast hands that can get the bat head to the baseball quickly. The uncommitted Keels is going to continue to hit for more power moving forward as he continues to get stronger and consistently barrel the baseball out in front.

-Greg Gerard

Turning in a stellar performance during Elite Squad’s first playoff victory on the day, Karson Ligon (2021, Sarasota, Fla.) set the tone for what would be a big day for the Elite Squad pitching staff. Committed to Miami, Ligon punched out six hitters over three scoreless frames while working primarily with his loud fastball. The pitch sat 89-91 mph in the first inning before settling in around the 85-88 mph for the duration of the start. The arm speed is very enticing as he whips through the arm circle very quickly, though the raw arm speed will cause him to yank his front side at times and pull the ball over toward the glove side. The quality of Ligon’s fastball was good on Sunday morning as he missed bats with the pitch especially when elevated. He showed both a curveball and changeup, in the upper-60s and low-70s respectively, while showing the ability to land the breaker for strikes. There are a lot of components here to build upon, especially when looking at the physical projection and arm speed, and Ligon’s ceiling is very high.

The big hit in the first round of the playoffs came courtesy of Marcus Franco (2021, Miramar, Fla.) as the Florida International commit launched a towering shot to the pull side for a grand slam to break open the game. Franco is a big, physical righthanded hitter with prodigious raw power that he can tap into when he gets his hands extended and creates separation to really turn on a ball and impact it with strength. The swing itself if very strong with some length to the bat path but when he’s timed up that impressive raw power can pay dividends from an offensive perspective.

Team Elite advanced to the Round of 16 during bracket play and one of the more impressive offensive skill sets belonged to Adam Ebling (2021, St. Louis, Mo.) who got their second playoff game started with a rocket to the left center gap. Ebling is an athletic infield prospect with lots of room to fill out his 6-foot-1, 180-pound frame. The swing path is clean with very loose hands that’s able to whip the barrel through the hitting zone and generate a good amount of impact at contact. He got the barrel out consistently on Sunday and showed some strength to square the ball nicely.

Canes third baseman Kurtis Reid (2021, Hamilton, Ohio) checks a lot of boxes that evaluators look at and Reid had a strong day on both sides of the ball. Listed at an athletic and projectable 6-foot-2, 180 pounds, Reid has such wiry strength and tons of room to fill out from a physical standpoint. There is some pre-pitch hand movement to the stroke but this allows him to really whip his hands and generate excellent bat speed through the point of contact. Reid has a fairly compact stroke that he’ll use to drive balls to both alleys with intent though he can show the raw power he possesses when he turns on a ball over the inner half to really let the baseball carry. As a power-hitting middle infielder Reid posits a very enticing profile and the Louisville commit has been crushing baseballs all weekend long.

Sammie Sloan (2021, Lakeland, Fla.) got the start for Elite Squad in their second playoff game of the day and he showed some loud stuff in a short performance to start the game. Sloan has an athletic delivery with a projectable frame at a listed 6-foot-2, 200 pounds. The arm stroke is loose through the back, albeit with some funk and length, but he snaps the arm stroke down from an over-the-top slot to work the fastball to both sides of the plate with downhill plane. The fastball topped out at 89 mph and sat in the 85-88 mph range for the majority of the start, he would mix both the fastball and the slider well especially when he landed the slider for strikes. The Florida commit will drop slot on the slider but when he gets on top of the pitch he can create some biting action in the mis-70s. Sloan struck out five batters over three scoreless and the stuff was fairly impressive.

Earning the victory in the Canes quarterfinals matchup, Casey Tallent (2021, Hartwell, Ga.) showed a lot of things to like, especially out of an uncommitted junior. Tallent has an uber-athletic delivery with a very fast arm that portends a lot of growth both from a physical standpoint but also velocity wise. He worked in the 87-89 mph range in the first inning before settling into the upper-80s and the fastball showed good life especially when down in the strike zone. The breaking ball showed good shape while Tallent also showed feel for a changeup at times. With three pitches for strikes and that kind of arm quickness Tallent shouldn’t remain uncommitted for much longer.

-Vinnie Cervino

5 Star National 2022 Burress made another deep run this weekend after winning the WWBA Sophomore Championships last weekend. Colby Frieda (2021, St Johns, Fla.) took the mound Sunday morning and did not disappoint. Frieda sat in the mid-80s with his fastball that has good downward angle and he located it to both sides of the plate. He works quickly and showed a bulldog mentality pounding the zone regularly. He has good bite to his upper-70s slider. The righthander is able to throw it for strikes to the glove side early, and burry it hard with two strikes. He has wide shoulders and long arms which help to get good extension to the plate. The Florida State commit has a ton of upside left and he will need to be watched closely.

The Sandlot Scout Team had a very physical and athletic lineup. Aidan Stewart (2021, Montgomery, Ala.) has length to his 5-foot-5 and 178-pound frame. New to switch-hitting, he displayed a loose lefthanded swing that was functional, with plenty of bat speed. He does a good job identifying pitches and should make consistent jumps with his hit tool as he continues to get reps. Playing shortstop, he glides around the infield with plenty of range to stay at the position. He was balanced throughout, taking good angles to round the ball. The uncommitted prospect made a play deep in the six-hole, jumping to make the throw, and used plenty of arm strength and accuracy to record the out. He is an exciting player to watch and could make a big jump as he body fills out.

Kellen Strohmeyer (2022, Dubuque, Iowa) started the game at shortstop for Iowa Select 2022 Gutwiler and was good on both sides of the ball. He shows good lateral movement and the ability to transfer and throw with fluidity. The uncommitted player will fill out nicely with long limbs and a high waist and his body looks like it will hold weight well. The lefthanded hitter gets good separation and his bat stayed flat in the zone for a long time. He has good bat-to-ball skills and the ability to hit from line to line as he showed Sunday. Hitting an opposite field liner to left and a double down the right field line. Lots of projection in the body for a kid that has really good in game feel already.

Flood City Elite 2022 rolled out a very good arm on Sunday afternoon in Brendon Bair (2021, Johnstown, Pa.). Playing football on Friday night before coming down to Florida, he came out hot peaking at 90 mph. His frame is strong with wide shoulders, but his waist is slender and there is plenty of room to add in the lower half. When he learns to use that lower half there will be a significant jump in the near future. His fastball showed sink when he got out front and located it down. The pitch got a lot of groundballs during his outing. His breaking ball has 11-5 shape, backing it up some, but threw one to the glove side and down that got a bad swing and miss. It looks like the pitch will be good as he continues to feel his hand speed. Overall, there is a lot to like and should easily make jumps as football season winds down.

The Orlando Scorpions 2021 Founders Club won three games on Sunday. Ty Evans (2021, Auburndale, Fla.) and Brandon Neely (2021, Seville, Fla.) were instrumental in a walk-off win during the first set of games.

Neely is an uber athletic righthanded pitcher with tons of arm speed. His frame makes you dream big as he is wiry and twitchy. At 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds he can add weight and maintain the quick twitch fibers. His shoulder is extremely fast, and he sat in the upper-80s and peaked at 90. The righty has a turbo sinking 2-seam fastball that regularly missed under opposing hitter’s bats. It proved extra hard to square during his outing. He has two breakers, the first is a curveball in the low-70s with 11-5 shape that he throws a lot early in the count. The second is a hard slider with 10-4 shape that peaked at 82. It is sharp with late break and was hard on righthanded hitters when he located it away. He flashed a changeup that should be a good pitch against lefties as it develops.

Evans can do a little of everything on the baseball diamond. He has a very quick righthanded bat with good balance and bat to ball skills. He stayed back on an outer half pitch and showed plenty of flick to hit it hard to the outfield. The Florida commit runs well and uses it well on the bases and in the outfield. He is very aggressive and will try and steal bags early and often. His arm plays well in the outfield and he shows the ability to throw accurately to the bases. He has also shown ability on the mound with a fastball that peaked at 90 earlier in the event.

Eric Chalus Jr. (2021, Bethel Park, Fla.) threw an absolute gem in the first round of bracket play on Sunday for Team Ohio Pro Select. He no-hit a very good opposing line while striking out 12 batters. This was the lefties second outing of the event and his overall line at the WWBA Underclass is staggering: 11 innings pitched giving up three total hits while striking out 17 batter and walking zero. The uncommitted prospect has elite command, using mostly a two-pitch arsenal. His fastball has some late arm side run to it while sitting in the low-80s and peaking at 84. Using the pitch to both sides of the plate regularly. He throws a big breaking curveball around 70, that he can back door or backfoot on command. The pitch does not show a ton of velocity yet, but he spins it well and showed some good downer bite to it. The southpaw has significant deception with a hip turn and the ability to hide the ball until it seemingly pops out of nowhere. Combine the deception with the command and it is no wonder Chalus Jr had the success he did. The frame has tons of upside and with his clean arm stroke he will make consistent bumps in velocity. This young guy should not be uncommitted for much longer.

-Jered Goodwin
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