Prep Baseball Report

Preseason All-State Games: 2019 Quick Hits

Jordon Banfield
Arizona Scouting Director

The Preseason All-State Games (Invite-Only) took place on Sunday, January 28th at Phoenix Municipal Stadium, home of the Arizona State Sun Devils. The event featured some of the top prospects from the 2019-2021 classes and gave them a chance to do a full workout, then compete in live game action. Today, we start the event analysis with some Quick Hits on a few of the top performers. This article will be released in three parts, beginning with the 2019 grads.

Complete video, data and pictures are already posted with individual scouting reports to follow in the coming weeks. Some players that have recently received heavy coverage will only be touched on briefly in this piece or not at all as there were a large number of high-end prospects in attendance. As always contact [email protected] or direct message @PBRArizona on Twitter with any questions and/or information. 


-LHP Cal Lambert was easily the best we've seen him. Previously some looseness in his hips caused timing issues that resulted in inconsistent command. He erased those concerns with an in sync delivery, pounding the zone with an 84-86, T87 fastball with cutting action and the same clean arm action that has always made him interesting.



-It says here SS Nathan Baez was one of the top two hitters at the event. While he doesn't possess elite athleticism or arm strength, he can be a factor offensively at any school in the country and his instincts allow him to play above his tools defensively. Projects as an offensive 2B or possibly 3B at the next level and has a chance to be an immediate impact guy on offense with elite ability to be on time and drive the baseball. 

-OF Gerardo Hernandez possesses at least average tools across the board and seems to always find the barrel in games. A top of the order threat, Hernandez is an instinctive baserunner with a chance to be future pro.

-LHP Eli Ankeney has made a significant velo jump recently after working mostly in the lower 80's on previous looks. He ran his fastball up to 88 on this day, generally pounding the zone at 84-86. There is some head violence and stiffness in the body, but uncommitted lefties up to 88 are hard to find and there's no question he can help someone in need of an arm.

-Brian Kalmer is an impressive physical specimen and found the barrel in game action, driving a ball with authority to the RCF gap for a triple. A 7.07 runner who gets strong carries on his throws across the diamond could project best to 3B at the next level.

-Uncommitted righties Jacob Henderson and Tyler Magin didn't show quite the same veto we have seen on previous looks, which is entirely understandable in January. However both are no doubt DI types, with Henderson (previously up to 87) showing the same sink on his fastball and an improved slider and Magin (previously up to 89) the same 3 pitch mix and arm speed that made him stand out in late October.

-Committed prospects SS Preston Clifford (New Mexico) and C Kody Huff (Notre Dame) both showed why they were major recruits as polished defenders with impressive arm strength. Huff turned in the best pop time of the day with a 1.90 and looks to have added strength since we last saw him in the fall. Clifford is a polished defender and performed well in game action, putting up an 88 mph infield velo that makes me interested to see him on the bump.

-Thome Nickelson has previously listed himself as a primary SS, but after being asked to work out at 3B and in the OF it is clear those are his best positions at the next level. The fast twitch athlete posted a 6.84 60-yard dash and 91 mph exit velocity while showing plenty of arm strength to play anywhere on the diamond. Nickerson stood out in the game, making hard contact and a highlight reel diving catch in RF.

-LHP Ethan Brown always seems to get outs with his sinking fastball, which he ran up to 85. The development of his secondary pitches will determine what level prospect he becomes.

-OF Peyton McGregor and 1B/RHP Joey Cammarata didn't throw at the event due to sore arms but both are very physical and showed some of the better raw power at the event.

-RHP Adam Parra continues to perform on the mound, showing polished command of three pitches and a mid 80's fastball. Can help a program needing an arm to step in right away and complete.

-There was a group of 2019 prospects listing themselves as primary SS that all possess some tools that can play at the next level. There's some rigidity to Dylan Cuenca's game, but he ran a 6.89 60 and absolutely mashed a ball off the wall in game. Jack Slominski's loose arm and long lean body stood out and also make him one we would like to see on the mound. Ty Mead shows present strength with some power to the pull side and likely projects best to 3B at the next level. Anthony Mase (CA) and and Nolan Brooks both ran sub-7.0 and could be contributors as second basemen in college.

-It's apparent Nogales HS will score plenty of runs this spring as Alec AcevedoJesus Lopez and Mike Gerardo showed the ability to drive the ball with authority. Finding defensive positions will be key for Lopez and Acevedo at the next level as they currently run in the mid 7's in the 60. Gerardo ran a 7.15, while his classmate Rickey Maytorena came in at 7.03.

-1B's Mason Skaugrud and Dylan Fesperman both impressed on offense with Skaugrud also showing strong footwork around the bag. Both have a chance to get a lot stronger and drive the ball out of the yard at some point.

-RHP's Kyle Conway and Jace Myers (UT) both ran their fastballs into the mid-80's. Conway is a max-effort guy who touched 86, while Myers was up to 84 with a smoother delivery.