Alabama Scout Blog: Week 5 Games


PBR Alabama Staff

The Alabama Scout Blog provides insider information and scouting notes from the PBR Scouting Staff during the season. This running blog will feature information on underclass prospects, unsigned seniors, draft prospects, and anything else that is notable. We will provide a wide range of information, including player evaluations, velocities, pop times, home to first times, and more. 

Continue to check back over the course of the week, as the Alabama Scouting Staff will add scouting reports daily.

 

Saturday, March 26th

+ RHP Slade Wood (Prattville, 2022) turned in another quality start for the No. 6-ranked Lions and never faced much trouble throughout his outing. The Troy signee pounded the zone (60/85 for strikes) using a three-pitch repertoire that made for some uncomfortable at-bats working five innings on the mound. The senior's fastball came out working 88-90 mph (2200 rpm) and touched 91.4 mph in the 1st inning with plenty of ride & run through the zone and looked comfortable working it to both halves of the plate. Listed a 6-foot-2, 200-pounds, Wood showed above average feel to spin a sharp slider in the low-70's for strikes and bury it in late counts to get swing-and-miss. He also showed a power low-80's changeup in this outing that has a chance to be a quality third offering. Although having a strong frame on the mound, Wood has plenty of athleticism getting down the mound and fields his position well, making a particularly difficult play look easy on a slow ground ball to his back hand where he slide and jumped up to throw a strike to 1st base. He finished earning the W and going 5 IP, 4 H, R, BB & 4 K's on the day. 

Slade Wood (3/26/22)

+ RHP/OF Evan Duncan (Stanhope Elmore, 2023) has been fairly unknown up until this point in his junior career, but the uncommitted junior put his high upside right-handed arm on display in a pair of relief innings. Listed at 6-foot-6, 245-pounds with a strong lower-half, Duncan came out pumping an easy & effortless 85-89 mph fastball with more to come mainly to the glove side in his first inning of relief, where he proceeded to punch out the side. He lost the zone a bit in his second inning, but showed maturity by being able to escape further damage in the 6th with another strike out. He showed a tight slider at 75-77 mph a few times in his short outing with developing feel for the pitch, but has the right shape/action. With a physical frame, a low-effort delivery and with not many bullets being used yet, Duncan has a chance to be a quality right-handed prospect with a high ceiling that is easy to dream on. He finished going 2 IP, H, 2 R (1 ER), 2 BB & 5 K's.

Evan Duncan (3/26/22)

1B Luke Price (Buckhorn, 2022) continues to impress with the bat at every look we have at him. Hitting out of the three-hole for the Bucks, the Lawson State recruit shows a very disciplined approach and very rarely chases out of the zone. Price can easily drive balls to all fields but Saturday he showed the ability to hammer balls to the backside as he ended up with two doubles that both drove in runs. His first knock was a missile to the RCF gap and his final at-bat resulted in a well struck ball that he drove off the fence down the RF line. On the day, the senior drove in three runs and scored two more.

Luke Price (3/26/22)

 

Friday, March 25th

+ RHP Caleb Pittman (Hartselle, 2022) was his usual self on Friday as he got the start in Game 1 with the difficult task of facing the Auburn lineup. From a shorter, high ¾ slot the ball seems to just explode out of the hand and the fastball shows some late life at 88-90 mph. On Friday, the slider was as good as we have seen it as he showed the ability to throw it for a strike and also as a swing and miss pitch as well. The Auburn signee showed advanced feel for the changeup at 83-84 mph and he used it as a weapon versus the left-handed bats in the Auburn lineup. Pittman finished going 4.2 IP, 3 H, 4 ER, 2 BB's & 10 K's. 

Caleb Pittman (3/25/22)

+ RHP Griffin Stewart (Auburn, 2022) started opposite Pittman in Game 1 as he also had to deal with a difficult Hartselle lineup. From the first pitch, it was evident that Stewart was up to the task and he seemed to revel in the competitive atmosphere between the two high profile teams. Stewart was able to mix all three of his pitches in any count which allowed the fastball to play up a tick. Showing a shorter, quick arm action, the Southern Union CC signee established the fastball down in the zone at 83-86 mph, bumping 87 mph twice. The breaking ball showed solid depth with 12-6 action at 69-73 mph that he commanded very well to the glove side. Much like Pittman, he showed a quality changeup verses the Hartselle left-handed bats at 78-81 mph with late fade. Stewart finished going 6.1 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB & 8 K's. 

Griffin Stewart (3/25/22)

+ SS Todd Clay (Auburn, 2022) seems to be the definite leader of this Tiger team as he was the vocal leader on the field at shortstop while also leading the team with the bat as well. Hitting out of the two-hole, Clay did not get away an at-bat all day as he continually took good swings early in the count while also spoiling numerous good pitches late in counts. Showing a very short, direct path with the barrel he seems to always stay inside contact with the barrel. For the day against high level arms, the Pensacola State CC recruit was 3-for-6 with three RBI's and two runs scored while also drawing a walk. On a team full of high-profile guys, Clay has been as consistent as anyone during the 2022 season. 

Todd Clay (3/25/22)

+ SS Jace Norton (Auburn, 2023) looks a lot different from July when he represented Team Alabama at the PBR Future Games, as he's added noticeable weight and strength, which has translated well to the field. The junior infielder and Mississippi State recruit also showed a very patient approach at the plate as he routinely laid off quality offerings just out of the zone. Norton also exhibited solid barrel control as he executed a perfect hit-and-run in Game 1 that was part of the Auburn three-run fourth inning. Later in the same game, he got an offering over the outer-half of the plate and lined it to right field for a solid single. Norton also worked two walks on the day. 

Jace Norton (3/25/22)

+ RHP Ryan Olson (Auburn, 2022) got the ball in Game 2 and was brilliant during his outing, only allowing one hit. Olson appears to be ultra-competitive and seemed to enjoy pitching in the big moment. The Auburn signee has a fair amount of moving parts in the delivery which creates some deception to hitters as he also hides the ball well until release point. Olson commanded the fastball to all quadrants at 86-88 mph with natural sink and movement to the arm-side. The breaking ball at 70-72 mph was well-shaped with very late 12-6 action that numerous hitters seemed to give up on. The senior didn’t waste any time between pitches as he worked very quickly. Olson finished going 5.1 IP, 1 H, 3 ER, 4 BB's & 7 K's.

Ryan Olson (3/25/22)

+ C Cameron Palahach (Hartselle, 2024) is a sophomore that continues to advance his skills behind the plate and is tasked with the job of handling a very talented Hartselle pitching staff. The catch-and-throw skills have improved and will continue to do so as he adds arm strength. The uncommitted sophomore can extend the plate to both sides for his pitchers and is a very quiet receiver. The most impressive part of his defensive game on Friday was the ability to handle pitches in the dirt as consistently blocked them with low effort, which included several high 80’s fastballs. Palahach has some juice to the pull side with the bat but Friday night was difficult for hitters from both sides to consistently get off good swings due to the high level arms they faced. Palahach did come up big for Hartselle in the bottom of the 7th inning of Game 2 as he led off the inning with a solid single, which ultimately proved to be the winning run. A definite 2024 to follow.  

Cameron Palahach (3/25/22)


Wednesday, March 23rd

+ LHP Colin Woodham (Stanhope Elmore, 2023) gave the Mustangs a chance to win on Wednesday in Madison as he turned in eight innings of shutout baseball. With a fastball that played anywhere from 79-82 mph, the southpaw established both sides of the plate and was able to command to both halves of the plate with the pitch. From a mid ¾ slot, Woodham also showed plenty of confidence in the breaking ball that showed sharp break with 1/7 action at 72-74 mph. He continued to bury the breaking ball down in the zone and hitters consistently swung over the top of the pitch. The junior occasionally mixed in a quality changeup at 69-71 mph that he seemed to cut at times, while he also showed fade away from right-handed hitters at times, as well. Woodham has continued to show the ability to miss barrels and force soft contact. Each of his outings are very similar to each other and he is the epitome of consistency. He finished going 8 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB's & 12 K's.  

Colin Woodham (3/23/22)

+ LHP Davis Ford (Opelika, 2025) turned in a quality outing for the Bulldogs in only his second start on the varsity. While there is definite strength and velocity that will be added over the next few years, the ability to pitch is already present for the freshman. Using a FB/CB mix, Ford kept hitters off balance throughout his stint and was able to locate on the outer-half with the fastball and was not afraid to locate in to hitters when needed. Using a bit of a longer arm action and a high ¾ slot, the southpaw spun a well-shaped breaking with command down in the zone. He very rarely threw any pitch over the heart of the plate. He finished going 5.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 3 BB's & 5 K's.

Davis Ford (3/23/22)


Tuesday, March 22nd

+ OF Connor Cosby (Auburn, 2023) has gotten off to a stellar start to begin his junior season hitting in the middle of one of, if not the, best lineups in the state of Alabama. The uncommitted junior led the way for the Tigers with three RBI's in yesterday's contest, all coming on a home run to RF facing a tough matchup against a quality left-handed pitcher. Cosby stands a medium 6-foot-1, 190-pounds and uses good rhythm throughout the swing and a quick barrel that has accuracy and whip to it at times. He also displayed quality zone awareness with ability to handle & adjust to off-speed pitches. Turned in one of the more impressive at-bats of the night by picking out a deceptive L/L slider down in the zone and driving it over the wall in RF for a home run. Cosby has consistently shown the ability hit in all looks and is unfazed by velocity. One of the top uncommitted hitters in the junior class in Alabama is hitting well over the .450 mark with three home runs on the season, and is doing it against some of the best competition the state has to offer.

Connor Cosby (3/22/22)

+ OF/LHP Caden Wooldridge (Wetumpka, 2024) has made a sizable impact playing in a two-way role for a very upperclassmen-led Indians squad as a sophomore. A former PBR Jr. Future Games attendee, Wooldridge was unfazed both at the plate and on the mound going up against the No. 1 team in Class 7A. Offensively, the 5-foot-8, 160-pound left-handed hitter reached base in three of his four plate appearances with a single, double and a walk. The sophomore uses a short, compact swing from the left side and works more to the opposite field with his approach. He also pitched some key relief innings in the middle of the contest, going 2.1 IP, 2 H, R, BB & 4 K's while working in the upper-70's and consistently landed a slower 12-6 breaking ball for strikes. He's continued to see his role expand early on this spring and should continue to be a follow for the sophomore class in Alabama moving forward.

Caden Wooldridge (3/22/22)

 

Monday, March 21st

+ RHP Drake Meeks (Briarwood Christian, 2023) has created tons of buzz to start his junior season and showed that he was as advertised in his start on Monday night. The uncommitted right-hander has made a significant jump in terms of velocity over the past year after seeing him working in the mid-80's at LakePoint this past summer for Excel Baseball. Now more filled out & stronger, Meeks showed he has one of the best fastballs in his class working up to 93.7 mph in his first inning. The 6-foot-4, 200-pounder pitched at 91-93.7 mph to start his outing, then settled into more 88-90 mph throughout the duration of his start. He showed average feel for his sharp slider at 77-79 mph with late bite that he threw in two-strike counts to try and get swing-and-miss. Meeks also flashed a low-80's changeup facing a heavy right-handed hitting lineup and showed the ability to land it in the zone at times. Although standing at 6-foot-4, he was fairly athletic down the mound and repeated his delivery well. He finished working into the 7th, but ultimately handed it to the bullpen to get the final out and finished earning the W going 6.2 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 2 BB & 5 K's. 

Drake Meeks (3/21/22)

+ SS/QB Jake Smithson (Brookwood, 2022) made a quick and lasting impression in short look hitting in the three-hole of the Panthers' order. The uncommitted senior seemed to be in the middle of everything for Brookwood, recording three hits and making every defensive routine play look easy playing shortstop. After doubling back in his first at-bat, Smithson recorded two singles (video below) to the opposite field in his final two at-bats. He uses a quiet & balanced setup in the right side of the box and showed the ability to handle all parts of the zone and use the whole field in his approach. Standing 5-foot-9, 160-pounds, the uncommitted senior should have no trouble moving to second base in the future with a reliable glove that can pick it defensively. He should be a solid addition to a college program looking to firm up their senior class.

Jake Smithson (3/21/22)

+ RHP Christian Chatterton (Brooks, 2024) got the start on Monday for the Lions and gave the Lions six innings of quality work. The Auburn recruit continues to show a low-effort, clean delivery with the ability to mix all of his pitches in different counts. The fastball continues to be a pitch he can land to both sides of the plate at 88-90 mph and the 11-5 shaped curveball continues to buckle opposing hitters at 73-75 mph. He's also added a late breaking slider at 78-79 mph that acts very similar to a cutter with sharp, lateral break. The sophomore right-hander did feature an above average changeup on a limited basis on Monday that was mostly straight at 78-79 mph. Chatterton scattered four hits on Monday over his six innings of work and did not allow an earned run or issue a walk, while striking out 11 opposing hitters.  

Christian Chatterton (3/21/22)

+ LHP Logan Mooney (Athens, 2023) turned in an excellent performance of his own as he eventually gained the win on the mound. In our second look of the young season at Mooney, he continues to show the ability to pitch backwards which makes it difficult for hitters to get comfortable against him in the box. The fastball sat 83-84 mph and bumped 85 mph a few times and showed legitimate arm-side run. He was able to elevate the fastball late in counts for some swing and misses. The breaking ball was fairly firm at 68-72 mph as he continued to bury the pitch in the bottom half of the zone. The changeup at 75-76 mph tunneled well with the fastball and seemed to disappear from right-handed hitters from the same arm slot and arm speed. Mooney allowed one earned run in the first inning while striking out eight. 

Logan Mooney (3/21/22)

+ INF/OF Seth Walton (Brooks, 2024) has made significant physical progress as he has added quality size and strength to an athletic frame. The three-sport athlete showed advanced ability with the bat as he led things off in the first inning with a triple to right field on a fastball on the outer half of the plate. Later, the sophomore got a fastball over the heart of the plate and showed the ability to get the barrel to contact on time, delivering a single to the pull side. Walton was the only player on either team that enjoyed a multi-hit day going 2-for-3 with a walk. He also made a fine defensive play in the first inning on a sinking liner in front of him. Walton can play numerous positions on the infield as well as all three outfield spots.  

Seth Walton (3/21/22)

+ SS Jack Elliott (Athens, 2024) really stood out early in the game with the glove as he made several difficult plays look fairly routine. Elliott showed solid lateral range, especially to the glove side, and displayed quality arm strength across the diamond. Hitting out of the two-hole for the Golden Eagles, Elliott turned in nice at-bats all day and worked deep into counts as he collected the biggest hit of the game. In the sixth inning, with runners on second and third with two outs and down in the counts with two strikes, the sophomore stayed on a fastball over the outer half and lined it to the backside to drive in both runs to make the score 3-1. Elliott is an intriguing follow for the ‘24 class.

Jack Elliott (3/21/22)

+ OF Andrew Batson (Hoover, 2022) got the Bucs started on Monday hitting at the top of a talented lineup. In the top of the 1st, Batson took the first pitch of the game to left center field, legging out a double. Batson showed some impressive pop from the right side and gets out of the box quick with a barrel that stays through the zone well. Batson is an impressive bat that is key to the top half of the Hoover lineup. Batson stepped back up to the plate in the 7th inning, and proceeded to hit a ball over the left fielders head for his second double of the game. The uncommitted senior continues to be one of the top offensive producers for a talented Hoover squad.

Andrew Batson (3/21/22)

+ OF Luke McNeill (Hoover, 2022) was a key bat for the Bucs on Monday sitting in the middle of their lineup. McNeill stepped up to the plate in his second at bat of the day and sent a fastball to the warning track for a fly out. McNeill showed good discipline at the plate and protected the inside of the plate very well. The Snead State CC recruit would get another shot though, in the 6th inning, McNeill smoked a pitch for a bases-clearing two-RBI double. McNeill has quick hands that allow him to cover the entirety of the plate well and use the whole field in his approach.

Luke McNeill (3/21/22)

+ MIF RJ Hamilton (Hoover, 2023) showed why he is considered one of the best bats in the state of Alabama on Monday. Hamilton has a very athletic frame at 5-foot-10, 165-pounds, and uses a short stride and quick hands to cover the entire plate. The Vanderbilt recruit and former Future Gamer stepped to the plate in the top of the 2nd with 2 runners on, 2 outs, and a full count, and promptly barrelled a pitch down the left field line, scoring both runners. Hamilton possesses great speed and hustle out of the box and a high motor.

RJ Hamilton (3/21/22)

 

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