Prep Baseball Report

Acalanes & Clayton Valley Co-Champs of Pittsburg Invitational

Blaine Clemmens
Northern CA Director of Scouting

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PITTSBURG, CA. - In the 2nd Annual Pittsburg Invitational, there were co-champs due to two ties in the second round games. These teams were in the tourney; Acalanes, Amador Valley, Berkeley, Clayton Valley, Freedom, Pittsburg, San Ramon Valley, & Vacaville. Acalanes & Clayton Valley shared the title by virtue of their wins on 3/5/20 at Michael Valle Field City Park, which I was there to see. 

In the early game Acalanes rode the strong pitching of junior LHP Sam Winkles and a bases  loaded clearing hit from sophomore OF Kyle White to down Berkeley HS 6-1. In game two, Clayton Valley rolled out three of their top four pitchers and despite losing a late lead, they eventually came out on top 7-6 in 9 innings. They got impressive outings from senior RHP Joey Soberon (5.2 IP, 6 H, 3 BB, 14 K, 5 R, 3 ER) and freshman RHP Kyle Connelly (3 IP, 2 H, R, BB, 5 K) to hold off the gritty and tenacious Vacaville Bulldogs. Vacaville is loaded with D1-bound players but it was uncommitted senior RHP Ethan Lamb (4.2 IP, 6 K, 0 BB, H, R) who kept them in the game and gave his teammates a chance to come back from a 6-3 deficit at the end of the 4th inning.

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Berkeley vs Acalanes

2020 RHP Samuel Olds of Berkeley HS got the start, strong athletic build (6-foot-2, 185-pounds), 3/4 slot, high knee tuck lift and delivery reminiscent of Jake Peavy. Fastball peaked at 86, comfort zone was 82-85 and it appeared as though he was intentionally adding and subtracting. Flashed potential for above average sinker to go with 71-73 mph slider with late two-plane break. Diving change-up 74-77 mph is another quality secondary pitch. Highly competitive and though made a few mistakes as he tired deep in the game, he's going to pitch after high school and without assigning him a level, would be interesting to see him continue to develop the next two years at the JC level.... 2021 LHP Sam Winkles of Acalanes is lean and rangy bodied at 6-foot-1, 150-pounds. The raw stuff will come as he gains size and strength and as he held his 77-80 most of the outing (6 IP), that's a good sign that he works at an effort level he can maximize and stay consistent with. Overhand slot, short backside, easy arm, good direction. Looks as young as I am told he is for the junior class. Fastball with occasional cutting action and effective pitch that plays up a little bit due to his usage of the change-up (71-73 mph) which he got many swings and misses with as well as soft contact. Did get some outs on high change-ups and down the road will need to finish the pitch better but he has feel of it. Big 66 mph curveball with 1/7 shape, minimal usage as he relied on FB/CHG. Ability to read and hold runners.... 2020 3B Nick Kresnak of Acalanes (Washington signee) is a player we have seen a lot of and late in the game he showed the swing that's had him among the most notable hitters in his class. Got a first pitch FB and drove it into the RCF gap for a double, which eventually was part of the loading of the bases that were cleared by Kyle White. Long battle at-bats, low pulse, quick quiet and flat stroke. Handled multiple chances at 3rd base and that low pulse shows up when he doesn't field the ball cleanly but stays with the play to record outs.... 2022 OF/2B Kyle White of Acalanes struck the big blow for the Dons, a bases clearing triple scoring Diaz, Kresnak, and Tommy Thrasher. Short compact swing, good timing, jumped a 1st pitch fastball which was a good sign as the sacks were juiced and the pitcher needed to get ahead. Average build at 5-foot-10 165-pounds, plenty of time to add size and strength. Sprayed ball to all fields in three at-bats.... 2020 OF Nicolas Bamont of Acalanes is a player I've seen hit and play well in high school games. He's around 5-foot-11, 185/190-pounds with visible muscularity in the arms and upper body. Hidden in the 8th spot in the line-up he pounded two line drives, one to RF and one to LF with a compact and aggressive stroke, one of which resulted in a two-out RBI. Bamont is also a very capable and steady OF and can make contributions to the game beyond the HS level.

Vacaville vs Clayton Valley Charter

2020 RF Jared Breedwell of Vacaville (USF signee) didn't have a super noticeable good game but in two at-bats, his third and fourth plate appearances, he twice looked and got breaking balls in two strike counts he singled through the infield, once driving in a run. He's got excellent bat control and combines that with baseball IQ at the plate. Sees the ball well and that showed up in all five plate appearances. Minimal to no chases on balls out of the zone.... 2020 CF Kenny DeCelle of Vacaville (Santa Clara signee) also had an under the radar quality game for the Bulldogs. His best tool has been his speed and ability to make contact and put pressure on the defense and in this one he did just that. He forced an error on the 1st baseman in his first at-bat, beat out a slow chopper to 3rd base in his fourth AB and reached on another error (E6) in his fifth AB. Ran 4.39-4.42 down the line, which isn't blazing, but he's gaining speed down the line and with his effort it was quite clear that the defense was affected.... 2020 1B Michael Brown of Vacaville (Washington signee) didn't have a good game at the plate but it's these kind of games, facing quality pitching, that can shape a better approach for him at the plate. Soberon punched him out three times, twice on the hard spike curveball and once on a fastball in. The lack of 2-K adjustments indicates this TALENTED and powerful young slugger still has plenty of development strides to make. Later in the game, vs tough LHP Mason Oakley, he did start to cut down his swing a bit and eventually grounded out to 2nd base on a CB. Brown walked in his final at-bat. He maintained his calm and cool and played well defensively, which soft hands and good feel for the often difficult 3-1 putout.... 2021 OF Brewster Mott of Vacaville (Air Force commit) had one at-bat and made the most of it, driving in the tying run in the top of the 7th inning, with a double down the LF line. Big and strong, the right-hand hitting Mott pulled his hands inside a 86 mph fastball boring in on the inner half and kept the ball fair. The swing plane and hand path are good as is his strength. He has legitimate power potential and bat talent. To get on the field more often his defense and throwing will have to improve.... 2020 RHP Ethan Lamb of Vacaville was the star of the game for the Bulldogs. Listed at 5-foot-11 175-pounds, he's got an athletic build and strong lower body. Quick arm, aggressive demeanor, his 4.2 IP gave Vacaville a chance in this one. The fastball isn't big (82-83 for the most part) but it's kind of sneaky. What is good for him is the 72-73 mph slider, tight and sharp with both swing and miss potential and the ability to lock up the swing of hitters. Pitched with energy, confidence and tempo, and frankly was slicing through a talented Clayton Valley line-up. Head Coach Stu Clary says he's also a capable 2B/OF, LHH, and best athlete on the team, which is really saying something because his team has a couple of extremely high level athletes.... 2021 LHP Mason Oakley of Clayton Valley (St. Mary's commit) is one of the area's top LHP pitching prospects. He's physical at 6-foot-0, 175-pounds and with his muscularity he looks a little bigger than that. High overhand slot, long arm action, fastball with heavy life at 87-89, big late tight curveball 77-79 mph. Came in to face Brown and got that ground ball to 2nd base on the curveball. The delivery and arm action occasionally get out of whack in terms of timing, but when he's in sync his stuff is awfully good.... 2020 3B Ryan Pierce of Clayton Valley (Fresno State signee) had a good game with three knocks to RF and consistent at-bats. Big and physical at 6-foot-3, 220-pounds or so. Played 3rd base in this one though projects as a 1st baseman in college. Quiet hitting approach, clearly has an approach that he trusts and took what the Vacaville pitchers gave him, which was staying away and making him take knocks to right field, obviously to stay away from his power, which is pretty prodigious. Strong hands and good bat control, he's a RHH with an ability to hit for average and punish mistakes for damage.... 2022 1B Jacob Krieg of Clayton Valley is a player to keep en eye on. A tall rangy R/R player at what appears to be around 6-foot-4, 200-pounds, he has an advanced approach and plan for a sophomore. Good pitch recognition skills, clean hand pat that keeps the barrel in the zone and works the middle of the field. Two LONG 6-7 pitch at-bats in first two plate appearances for BBs, then knocked a ball off the pitcher's body in 3rd AB. There will be power in the coming years but for now, the approach and hit tool show up and will give that power time to develop. Lapse of judgement on a poor throw across the diamond led to a run early in the game. Good arm and plenty of room for growth and development as a defender.


To be posted 3/10/20... too much content to digest in one sitting... will have video (for subscribers) for all these players.

2020 SS Brian McClellin - Vacaville (Cal signee)

2020 RHP Joey Soberon - Clayton Valley (UC San Diego signee)

2023 RHP Kyle Connelly - Clayton Valley (Cal commit)

2023 C Ryder Helfrick - Clayton Valley (Cal commit)

2020 SS Theo Hardy - Berkeley (San Jose State signee)

2021 SS Davis Diaz - Acalanes (Vanderbilt commit)

2021 C Thatcher Hurd - Acalanes (UC Santa Barbara commit)


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