Prep Baseball Report

Alabama 2025 Player Rankings: Initial Release

Austin Sharp
Alabama Scouting Director

With the fall season coming to a close and the high school season quickly approaching in a few months, we are excited to roll out and debut the inaugural 2025 Player Rankings for the state of Alabama. Without a doubt, this list will continue to evolve over the next few years as the list will certainly grow and there will be numerous changes among the players. This class features some very impressive young talent and will certainly follow along the recent trend of talented players in each graduating class. From top to bottom, this class has the potential to be a very deep class. 

To see the full rankings, CLICK HERE

Keep an eye out in the coming days for the 2025 National Player Rankings, where you will be sure to see some familiar faces on the list.


Intriguing Two-Way Leads the Way

+ Leading it off at the top in this first edition of the '25 Rankings, OF/RHP Wade Shelley (Houston Academy, 2025) takes sole position of the No. 1 spot. The 5-11, 165-pounder has some exciting tools that a college coach can dream on for the future, and also has an electric fastball for his age that can consistently creep into the upper-80's on some occasions. While still being a young prospect, Shelley has laid a solid base for the future and will be one to follow in the coming years as this class continues to develop.


Talented Hitters Throughout Top-10

+ Looking at the rest of the Top-10, all of these players have a chance to be really talented hitters when it's all said and done. OF Damien Gatson (Mobile Christian, 2025) comes in at No. 2 and is another toolsy outfielder who jumped out immediately to our staff at multiple events this summer, including a good showing at the PBR Jr. Future Games. An athletic 5-11, 175-pounder with good speed, a strong arm from the outfield, and a smooth left-handed stroke that produces some gap-to-gap pop at the plate.

+ The catcher position is well-represented in the Top-5, as two of those spots belong to two impressive backstops. Starting off at No. 3, C Mikey Vanderheyden (GW Long, 2025) is as advanced defensively as they come for catchers at his age. A 5-10, 160-pounder who started behind the plate as an eight-grader last year for 2A powerhouse GW Long, Vanderheyden uses a repeatable swing from the right side with a line drive approach and potential for more power.

+ Right behind Vanderheyden at No. 4, C Noah Blackburn (Mobile Christian, 2025) is a 5-11, 180-pounder who may be a bit more offensive with gap-to-gap power from the right side. He's posted 1.94-2.09 pop times at previous events with multiple upper-80 EV's during BP.

+ There are probably very few at this age that possess the power & physicality that 1B Caiden Combs (Gardendale, 2025) has shown over the past couple of years. Standing at 6-3, 245-pounds with obvious strength, Combs has a chance to be one of the best power bats in the southeast, and he rounds out the Top-5 at No. 5 He's a two-time PBR Jr. Future Games attendee where he posted mid-90 EV's in both years.

+ Continuing an overlook over the Top-10, RHP/SS Eli Bozeman (Oxford, 2025) comes in at No. 6 with some sizable upside both at the plate and on the mound. A projectable 6-1, 165-pounder with long limbs, Bozeman has been into the mid-80's with his fastball and will throw much harder as he continues to develop. Can also handle the bat at the plate with a smooth right-handed swing and could see more power down the road with added strength & development. Behind Bozeman at No. 7, OF Santae McWilliams, Jr. (Saraland, 2025) possesses some high-end athleticism that really suites his skillset. Clocked at 6.85 last summer in the 60 YD, and uses a flat path through the zone with twitchy hands. Also a talented football recruit.

+ Another member from this summer's PBR Jr. Future Games squad inside the Top-10, 1B Cole Dean (Bayshore Christian, 2025) debuts at No. 8 in this edition of the rankings. Dean is an advanced left-handed hitter that projects to be a middle-of-the-order type bat in the future. Using a 5-9, 170-pound frame that projects to add strength and grow, Dean uses controlled aggression at the plate to take a aggressive swings. 3-hole hitter as an eight-grader for the 1A State Champs last year.

+ Rounding out the Top-10, we have two prospects who have a chance to put up big power numbers across their respective high school careers. 1B/LHP Cooper Clemmons (Tuscaloosa County, 2025) stands a compact 5-9, 175-pounds, but packs a major punch in a left-handed bat. He uses a gap-to-gap approach at the plate, and will obviously see more power as he continues to develop. Coming in at No. 10, C/RHP Hudson Gilman (Oxford, 2025) has some intriguing upside as a two-way player. Strong 6-0, 180-pounder with pull-side pop at the plate and some of the best catch-and-throw ability in this class. Also has been up to 81 mph on the mound.



The Top-10

Rank Name Position High School
1 Wade Shelley OF/RHP Houston Academy
2 Damien Gatson OF Mobile Christian
3 Mikey Vanderheyden C GW Long
4 Noah Blackburn C Mobile Christian
5 Caiden Combs 1B Gardendale
6 Eli Bozeman RHP/SS Oxford
7 Santae McWilliams, Jr. OF Saraland
8 Cole Dean 1B Bayshore Christian
9 Cooper Clemmons 1B Tuscaloosa County
10 Hudson Gilman C/RHP Oxford


Click Here to See Full Rankings


We just released our Preseason All State events to be held before the high school season begins in January. This event has grown into a heavily attended event so this year we will have two different events with one being in the northern half of the state and the other to be held in the southern part of the state.

Click HERE to get information or to request an invite to one of the events. 


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