PBR BC 2020 Rankings: Risers and Additions


Logan Wedgewood
PBR British Columbia Scout

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PBR BC 2020 Rankings: Risers and Additions

As part of our latest rankings at PBR BC, we will highlight six players who have shown impressive improvements since our last Rankings. Three players are Top Risers, while three will be New Additions.

New Additions

Cooper Crompton RHP / Walnut Grove, BC / 2020

Crompton is about as projectable as pitchers come. He is tall and lean, with long levers and can pump it up to just shy of that 90MPH mark. He topped at 89MPH at the IP Showcase last February, but his spin rates turned the most heads. On his fastball, which averaged 86.9 MPH on the day, spinning at an average RPM of 2493. His Slider, averaging at 78.9 MPH spun at an average of 2563 RPM, and his Change-up averaged at 82.1 MPH and spun at an average of 2068 RPM. He topped in the low 2600s RPMs on his Fastball and Slider combo, and profiles to impact a college staff as his body adds weight. A must watch during his Jr. College Career and potential prospect if he continues to mature and develop.

Mackinnon Homeniuk OF / RHP / Nanaimo District, BC / 2020

Homeniuk demonstrated some athletic moves in the box and on the mound at the IP showcase last February. On the mound, he showed growth in his fastball, getting up to 83MPH and sitting at 81-82. He has a whippy arm with decent arm-side movement. He has room to grow at the plate when discussing the repeatability with his motion, but being a CF by trade, he has athleticism to spare. With continued strength and stability growth, he should turn into a respectable and potentially dynamic two-way athletic player.

Hilo Yamamoto SS / 2B / Sentinel, BC / 2020

Yamamoto consistently impresses when thrown into atmospheres with other great players. Defensively it is fundamentally sound and has smooth actions. Foot speed and arm strength improvements will lead to a superb defensive player. At the plate, Hilo has a very calm approach while hitting and shows maturity and plate discipline at the plate. Yamamoto consistently finds himself in hitting counts, and if behind, Hilo has the bat to ball ability to stay alive. He does not strike out often, and last summer in the PBL in limited time earned a .306 average over 75 plate appearances. If not for a 2020 postponed season, Hilo may have been a potential batting average champion across the league.

Risers

Liam Bates RHP / New Westminster, BC / 2020

Every time we have seen Bates, he has shown an extra couple of ticks on his fastball. He has a good body and an athletic build. At the IP Showcase, he sat at 90.2 MPH and showed consistency with his velocity, topping at 90.9. He has a nice motion and shows great body control, which translates to his strike-throwing ability with his fastball, at 80% on the day. With maturity and feel his control numbers on his secondary stuff will improve, but he has a good bite and high spin efficiency on both his fastball and change-up. Look for Bates to continue to develop as an under-the-radar BC arm in a province full of impact pitchers.

Ben Columbus C / 3B / Sentinel Secondary, BC / 2020

Columbus has shown out in a Catcher-heavy class and has shown that he is among the top left-handed hitters in the province. Last season, he was impressed with a .347 Batting Average over 121 At-Bats for a Championship North Shore Twins team, while also leading the innings caught. He demonstrated his sure handedness only committing one error in the position while recording 23 assists, second to only Junior National Team member, Connor Caskenette. By the numbers: at IP Showcase, Columbus averaged an EV of 84.6 MPH across 18 recorded swings, topping out at 93.5 MPH with an average HHBLA (Hard Hit Ball Launch Angle= the launch angle of batted balls within 10% of top EV) of 14°.

Matthew Suarez C / John Oliver Secondary, BC / 2020

Widely regarded as British Columbia’s best defensive catcher due to his 2.00-2.1 in-game POP and his ability to block and receive well, Suarez has taken great strides this offseason with his bat as well. He had good stats last summer, with a .900+ OPS over 96 At-Bats; however, his power numbers left people wanting more out of him. Last summer, he showed more of a contact conscious approach to his swing, which helped him get on base at a .442 clip, but left people wanting more out of him on the power front. Despite a COVID-19 suspended Sr. Season, it would be reasonable to believe that 91.3MPH aveEV over 14 recorded swings at the IP Showcase, topping at 97.4 MPH and 17° HHBLA, would have led to a higher Slugging Percentage this summer. The prospect of Suarez's plus defensive capabilities being paired with the middle of the order type offensive contribution this summer is easily arguable. Suarez is the ultimate sleeper still on the uncommitted list for 2020 catchers.