Tournaments | Story | 10/7/2019

PG Fall Classic Scout Notes

Matthew Arietta        

Brennan Boone (2021, Dallas, Ga.) is a 5-foot-11, 130-pound righthanded pitcher and utility player from Harrison High School in Kennesaw, Ga. The junior took the mound Friday night for his club West Cobb Raptors at Brook Run and was dominant as he recorded 10 strikeouts over his four innings of work. Boone, still with some room to fill on his long and a lanky frame, pitches with good mound presence and has an up-tempo wind-up with clean mechanics from the third base side of the rubber. His arm works well as it travels along a large circle in back with a slight show behind. Boone does a nice job masking his offspeed as he releases his repertoire from an over-top release point. He keeps his hand high at release, and really rips his pitches downhill with creates good deception and adds life to his fastball with his good extension out front. Boone used a two-pitch mix to keep hitters off balance and rack up the swing and miss on the night. Brennan’s fastball sat in the high-70s with a high of 80 mph during the start. Nothing Brennan throws is straight, yet he regularly fills the zone with good control of his offerings. Brennan’s fastball showed cut and dive through the strike zone. Boone complimented his heater with a low-60s hook that displayed proper shape and good depth. Boone deployed a simple approach to his start and lead mostly with his fastball using his curveball once ahead on his opposition which happened often, mostly leading to swing and miss.

Henry Collins (2021, Sandy Springs, Ga.) is a 6-foot-3, 175-pound righthanded pitcher from Riverwood High School in his hometown. Collins’ presence is noticeable from the moment he steps to the mound. He has tremendous size and strength as he is currently at physical maturity yet might be able to gain more strength as he matures. The junior has not factored into a decision on the mound during a Perfect Game event this year but does own a 2:1 strikeout to walk ratio and almost two strikeout per inning average, with less than a hit per inning over a 17-inning span. On the mound he has good rhythm and tempo to his delivery and showed nice pitching mechanics which helped him fill up the strike zone all start long. Collins battled the West Cobb Raptors lineup with pitchability and poise, as he used his two-pitch mix of a fastball (77-79 mph) and a curveball (68-69 mph) to collect a lot of swing and miss on his way to eight strikeouts and a win, his first on the year at a Perfect Game event. Henry’s fastball showed good angle and life when down in the zone, whereas his curveball has some three-quarter break and decent depth. He is pretty consistent with his arm slot, making the mix tough to identify for the hitter. Overall, Collins is developing nicely as a pitcher who isn’t afraid to battle hitters on the mound, helping him grab your attention while he clearly exudes confidence all start long.

Corey Hobbs (2021, Canton, Ga.) is a 6-foot-1, 155-pound righthanded pitcher who came on in relief for his team, East Cobb Braves 17u Butler in the third inning Friday night at Brook Run Park. Hobbs did not disappoint despite entering in the game with his club facing a four-run deficit. Hobbs did his job over the remaining 3 2/3 innings as he did not allow a hit, struck out seven and walked one throughout his  appearance. Hobbs filled the zone at a 65 percent clip with all three of his pitches. Hobbs used a fastball that hit 81 yet hung in the high-70s, a curveball with depth and slurve-like shape in the mid-60s, and a changeup with low-70s with some fade and the makings of decent feel. Hobbs went right at hitters with a bulldog-like demeanor, keeping his team in the game as they would battle back scoring two runs in the top of the sixth, yet ultimately fell short, 5-3. Hobbs has good size and plenty of room to fill to his frame in its current state. He is very athletic and with his seven punchouts tonight raised his 2019 total to eight over seven innings of work, where he still hasn’t allowed a run. Promising pitcher with a bright future on the mound.

Sam Melton (2021, Cartersville, Ga.) is a 5-foot-11, 170-pound corner infielder and outfielder from Cartersville High School in his hometown. Currently in his junior year, Sam showcased his raw power potential twice during his six at-bats at Brook Run Friday night. Sam, who hits in the four-hole for his club, Canes GA Gold 17u, hit at a .333 clip on the night with a double, home run, and a walk. Melton is a good athlete whose tools translate to all facets of the game. He has a quick, strong stroke at the plate, while demonstrating keen barrel control and present power to the gaps. He moves well out of the box and shows awareness and aggression on the base paths. A sound center fielder, Melton shows leadership in the outfield and gets to all balls hit his way with nice first step quickness and anticipation. Sam showcased clean fielding mechanics and confidence in his glove a couple times on the night. A baseball  player by all means of the definition, Melton is a nice piece to have both in the middle of your order and patrolling center field. Only halfway through his high school career, Sam has plenty of next-level potential as he continues to develop moving forward.

Gavin Millians (2021, Carrollton, Ga.) simply stole the show at Brook Run Friday night. Millians leads by example and contributed to both of Canes GA Gold 17u’s wins in a big way. When all was said and done, Millians had a night that ended 4-for-7 with two runs scored, a long home run to the pull side, and four runs batted in. Millians’ home run was absolutely crushed to deep left field that plated three and gave his team the lead for good. Millians would also add an RBI to his tournament stat line on Saturday at Brook Run in a close game, won by his Canes GA Gold 17u club 2-to-0. At the plate, Millians sets up with a square stance and hands low near his pec. He uses a steady bat waggle for timing and deploys a large step to start his swing as he shifts his weight into his load. Gavin has super quick hands and wrists and hit the ball hard where it was pitched with consistency all night long. He has plus bat speed for his age, and when paired with his keen hand-eye coordination good things happen. He continually showed the ability to hit balls high and far. Behind the plate, Millians showed soft hands and received the ball well with quiet actions. Very reliable backstop that played without fear and blocks pitches well, while staying in toon with his battery-mate. Lastly, Millians came on to save Canes GA Gold 17u’s second game of the night, entering the seventh to secure a 5-3 lead. Needing only 18 pitches to complete his assignment, Millians walked off the mound having recorded three punchouts mixing his mid-80s fastball and mid-60s slider to garner a lot of swing and miss. An extremely high up-side talent, Gavin has the size and strength currently to make a difference at the next level. With still two years for the prospect to develop, one can only think that will it be a collegiate future or the MLB Draft in 2021.

The action got rolling early at Brook Run Saturday morning thanks to a dominant pitching performance by 643 DP Cougars starter Cooper Haseley (2020, Marietta, Ga.). Haseley went five full in a run-ruled shortened win where he struck out seven and allowed two hits. Cooper used a two-pitch mix of a fastball which reached as high as 86 mph in the early going, and a curveball in the low-70s. Haseley threw nearly 65 percent of his offerings for strikes, often getting ahead of the hitter, giving himself the best chance to be successful. Cooper exudes confidence on the mound which his teammates fed off of all game long on their way to a 8-to-nothing five inning shutout. Haseley was aided by the offensive production of teammate, William Lybrook (2020, Atlanta, Ga.) who went 2-for-2 in the 8 am slot with two runs scored, a double, triple, run-batted-in and a walk.

643 DP Cougars continued to display their strong pitching depth at Brook Run in the their 12:40 matchup at Brook Run as well. For the second game of the day they sent out David Sickles (2020, Marietta, Ga.), who pitched four innings of one-run baseball and showcased a fastball in the low-80s which contributed to a one-hit performance before giving way to teammate Nate Shipley (2020, Marietta, Ga.). Shipley was able to keep the tempo in 643’s favor as he went the following two innings without allowing a hit. Like his teammates, Shipley featured a hard fastball that reached a high of 86 mph, and complimented it well with a curveball that had good shape and depth in the mid- to- high-60s.

From the strong pitching to start the day, we were met at Brook Run Park with an offensive explosion curtesy of East Cobb Colt .45’s 18u. In their first game of the day, they were able to score 16 runs on 11 hits, on their way to a mercy-rule shortened victory, 16-6 over the Roswell Hornets. East Cobb was powered by three multi-hit performances of Hayden Duffield (2020, Woodstock, Ga.) who went 2-for-4, and displayed strong feel for the barrel and power to the gaps as he collected two doubles, scored twice, and batted in two more. Justin Wobb (2020, Acworth, Ga.) went 2-for-2, and shortstop Colin Innes (2020, Acworth, Ga.) went 2-for-3 and showed plus raw power potential with a double to the gap and a home run, capping off a two RBI day.

The offensive surge continued at Brook Run when MGBA showed up for the 10:20 bout with the Georgia Stars Baseball Academy. The game featured many strong performances but none stronger than starting pitcher Saivion Mohammed (2021, Powder Springs, Ga.). Saivion, who stands 5-foot-8, 135 pounds and attends McEachern High School, pounded the zone with his two-pitch mix of a fastball (77-79 mph) and a curveball (67-68 mph) on his way to a two-hit shutout where he also k’d six and walked one. Only needing 71 pitches to complete his assignment, Mohammed used a fastball in the high-70s with better control than command, and a high-60s curveball with good shape, depth and feel for the pitch.

Narvin Booker (2021, Lithonia, Ga.) and Dexter Redding (2020, Atlanta, Ga.) led the offense in support of Mohammed as the two top-of-the-order hitters for MGBA went a collective 4-for-4 with four runs scored and a walk each. Redding also added a triple and two runs batted in. Both hitters were patient in the box and appeared to have a plan at the plate. They both have keen mechanics and above-average hand-eye coordination that leads to a lot of hard-hit contact. They have advanced acumen and very obviously know the role they play in the order and do it well, as they fueled the 8-0 shutout victory at Brook Run Saturday.

Offense took center stage during the first half of the afternoon at Brook Run Park as the 12:20 time slot featured offensive performances from Roswell Hornets’ David Shriner (2021, Johns Creek, Ga.) who played to the tune of a 2-for-3 day with a run scored, a double, walk, and run batted in. Aside from his keen hitability, Shriner also has a solid glove and defensive actions at the hot corner, a good arm with carry through the bag, and speed on the bases helping him swipe a bag during the contest.

Mercer Commit and 643 DP Cougars backstop Henry Gies (2020, Dunwoody, Ga.) hit and caught his club to a quarterfinal birth Sunday as he had a perfect day at the plate going 2-for-2 with a double and two runs batted in, raising his tournament average to .667. Gies has a short, compact swing with power to the gaps, and good speed and athleticism for his 6-foot-3, 209-pound frame. He has keen awareness on both offense and defense and plenty of tools to help him succeed at the next level, next fall.

Pitching would prevail throughout the late afternoon and into the evening Saturday at Brook Run, as the day ended with five strong pitching performances. The first was from East Cobb Colt .45’s 18u starter, Carter McWilliams (2020, Acworth, Ga.) out of Allatoona High School. McWilliams turned in a complete-game, six-hit performance that would earn him a win, after striking out seven on the afternoon, only walking one. McWilliams maintained a fastball in the low-80s and regularly filled the zone to nearly a 70 percent clip, throwing both pitches for strikes, and working both his curve and fastball into all counts, keeping hitters off balance.

Following McWilliams was Tyler Davis (2021, Tappahannock, Va.), the starter for his club, Virginia Spiders Showcase. Davis cruised through a three-hit performance, giving his club a birth into the playoffs later on in the night at Alpharetta Legion Field. McWilliams would over-power the MGBA hitters with a two-pitch mix of a fastball that rose to the high-70s as he went, and a curve with good feel in the low-60s. Throwing 60 percent of his pitches for strikes, Davis was dominant showing both pitchability and projectability throughout his start.

Next out of the gate was Canes GA Gold 17u’s starter Jack Curtain (2021, Roswell, Ga.) who followed up a 2-for-3 offensive outburst last night at Brook Run, to then shove on the mound and record a complete-game, five-hit shutout win, sending Canes GA Gold 17u to the quarterfinals the Quarterfinals Sunday morning. Curtain was lights out from first pitch to the last as he scattered five hits, allowed no runs, and struck out seven. He used a low-70s fastball and low-60s curveball to keep hitters out front and off balance all game long, while filling up the zone with plus control for his age, recording nearly an 80 percent strike percentage on the day.

Playoff Round One got off to a bang at Brook Run Saturday night as feature matchup of East Cobb Braves 17u Butler’s, Nicholas Fagerburg (2020, Woodstock, Ga.) and East Cobb Colt .45’s 18u’s, Beau Fletcher (2020, Homeschool) would battle hard over 5 2/3 innings of the two-hit, one-run duel. When the game ended, Fletcher and East Cobb Colt .45’s 18u club would earn their spot in the Quarterfinal at East Cobb, yet performances are worth noting on both sides. Fletcher would exit the game in the sixth with a one-run lead after striking out 12 East Cobb Braves with his mid-80s fastball and a slurvy low-70s curveball. Fletcher pitched with confidence all game long and battled hard for his team.

Fagerburg threw a one-hitter in his own right, despite the losing effort. Fagerburg was impressive as he didn’t allow an earned run, struck out six and walked none during the quarterfinal start. Fagerburg, like Fletcher, filled the zone with his two-pitch mix of a fastball and curveball, and if hit, induced slow, weak contact that his fielders could handle. Excellent game for those in attendance at Brook Run Saturday night, and an excellent precursor into the action that will be featured Sunday during the championship rounds of the Perfect Game Fall Classic.

Andrew Kribbs (2021, Knoxville, Tenn.) is a 5-foot-11, 185-pound catcher, third baseman, and righthanded pitcher from Christian Academy Knoxville in his hometown. Although Kribbs appeared in every game of the tournament and had a 2-for-3 game in the Quarterfinals at East Cobb, what really stuck out was his performance on the mound during the championship win against Ninth Inning Royals 16u Honeycutt. Kribbs entered the game in the sixth inning after the Royals scored their second run and shut the door. Kribbs went two full innings Sunday, where he allowed one hit, no runs or walks, and struck out three. On the mound, Kribbs deploys a full windup from the third base side of the rubber. He uses a slow and even-tempo to his delivery with a high leg kick, and deep drop and drive on his back leg. His arm travels through a short, tense circle in back and he releases his repertoire from a three-quarters slot, with good extension out front and follow through over his front side down the mound. Since, Kribbs is athletic and flexible, he was able to keep his offerings down in the zone with life throughout the outing. Kribbs used a three-pitch mix of a fastball that had life and run, and reached a high of 91 mph, a changeup with good arm speed and dive and a curveball with three-quarters break and good depth.

Kribb’s teammate from eXposure Underclass White-Fall, Keaton Ray (2021, Evensville, Tenn.) also performed at a high level all weekend in Atlanta. Over the five-game stretch, Ray hit .400 with three singles, a double, triple, and home run. He also walked twice, scored three times, had four runs batted in and a stolen base to fill up his weekend stat line. The Underclass All American uses a simple approach at the plate from the left side. He has quick hands and wrists and keen hand-eye coordination that leads to a lot of hard-barreled contact. Power is present in games already, and he has already shown consistently that he can handle swinging wood bats. The ball really carries off his bat as he has leverage and uses all fields. Ray is very athletic and moves well on the bases with awareness and a high baseball IQ. He is a good outfielder as well with good first step quickness and consistently took clean routes to make plays look effortless.

Reid Robertson (2020, Marietta, Ga.) is a 5-foot-10, 150-pound tall and lean outfielder and lefthanded pitcher from Pope High School here in Marietta, Ga. Robertson, who will graduate in the spring, already has committed to attend Dallas Baptist University upon high school graduation. This weekend Robertson was a mainstay in the heart of the 643 DP Cougars lineup as he hit .333 with three singles, and a triple in five games, and also stole a base. Robertson, who hits third for his club, performed highly when it mattered most in the Championship Sunday night at East Cobb going 2-for-2 with a run scored, a triple, and two runs batted in. At the plate, Robertson is very short through the hitting zone and makes consistent loud contact to all fields. In the outfield he shows good instincts, athleticism, and range to make all plays hit his way. Athleticism translates to the bases as well as he is a definite green-light guy who looks to run and make things happen.

Lipscomb commit Christopher Robinson (2021, Riggold, Ga.) is a 6-foot-1, 180-pound outfielder from Notre Dame Academy, in nearby Duluth, Ga. Already a highly-ranked outfielder in the state for his 2021 class, Robinson helped his club, eXposure Underclass White-Fall, in many ways this weekend on their way to the Underclass crown. At only 16, Robertson hit .385 over the five-game stretch this weekend, paired with six walks out of the leadoff spot, four runs scored, and four stolen bases. Robinson has a great approach in the box, as he is patient and knows his role in the lineup. Despite having a good eye, he definitely isn’t afraid to turn it lose on occasion with quick hands, and good bat speed through the hitting zone that generates a lot of line-drive results to the gaps. An excellent athlete, Robinson’s speed is plus both on the bases and in the outfield. He also demonstrated keen fielding tools, capable of making all plays hit his way with strong throws to bases as well.

East Tennessee State commit Andrew Ronne (2021, Athens, Tenn.) is a 6-foot-3, 185-pound righthanded pitcher out of McMinn High School in his hometown. Coming into this weekend, Ronne was ranked as the seventh-best pitcher in the 2021 class in his home state. Ronne was able to showcase his abilities on the mound this weekend when he earned the start for his club eXposure Underclass White – Fall on Sunday at East Cobb in their quarterfinal bout that resulted in a 6-1 victory. Ronne dazzled during his start all game long as he was able to go the distance allowing two hits, a run, and walked none over the seven-inning complete game win. The most impressive stat on the day was that Ronne used his three-pitch mix to strike out 17 of Bullpen Redstitch 108 16u’s hitters. To do so, Ronne displayed keen mechanics and plenty of deception to add effectiveness and life to his fastball which reached 90 mph, a slider in the high-70s, and a changeup in the low- to mid-80s.

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