Prep Baseball Report

Boras Classic South Preview

Nathan Rode and Shooter Hunt

The Boras Classic began in 2013 with the Northern California and Southern California tournaments and the respective winners facing off in an unofficial state championship later in the season. It has since expanded to Arizona, which has included other teams from the Southwest region. With talented teams in attendance, The Boras Classic tournaments have become an important stop for scouts and college recruiters. Prep Baseball Report was on location in Arizona and Northern California the last couple weeks and is now headed to Southern California. Here are some notable things to watch this week in Orange County...

Who Will Be There

First Round (All Times Pacific)

At JSerra
9:00 a.m - Orange Lutheran vs. El Toro
12:00 p.m. - Santiago vs. Harvard-Westlake
3:00 p.m. - Simi Valley vs. Cathedral Catholic
6:00 p.m. - Newbury Park vs. JSerra Catholic
At Mater Dei
9:00 a.m. - Huntington Beach vs. South Hills
12:00 p.m. - Etiwanda vs. Notre Dame
3:00 p.m. - La Mirada vs. Vista Murrieta
6:00 p.m. - West Ranch vs. Mater Dei

High School Draft 100 Players in Attendance

5. Brice Turang, SS, Santiago HS
9. Cole Winn, RHP, Orange Lutheran HS
46. Erik Tolman, LHP, El Toro HS
64. Brandon Dieter, SS, South Hills HS
65. Jake Moberg, SS, Vista Murrietta HS
72. Emilio Rosas, SS, Mater Dei HS
80. Owen Sharts, RHP, Simi Valley HS

Draft Storylines

RHP Cole Winn (Orange Lutheran HS, CA) has been electric this spring and is continuing to push his way up draft boards. After a string of good starts in California, he was one of the top standouts at last week’s National High School Invitational in Cary, NC. With a low-90s fastball, which touches the mid 90s, and a relatively new breaking ball, Winn has pitched himself into the first-round conversation. Teams likely don’t need any more proof, but pitching well again on a big stage certainly won’t hurt his stock.

SS Brice Turang (Santiago HS, CA) has been on the prospect radar so long that he’s beginning to get picked apart. Questions about the impact of his bat come up since last summer, but you can’t argue against his overall ability on the diamond. He has tremendous instincts, is an above-average defender at short and a plus runner. He started squaring some balls up at the NHSI last week, so hopefully he’s catching fire and can carry it through this week.

LHP Erik Tolman (El Toro HS, CA) was a big standout at the Area Code Games last summer, pitching at 90-92 and flashing a wipeout slider. He hasn’t shown that kind of velocity this spring, but if he’s pitching in the first round against Orange Lutheran, he’ll have plenty of eyes on him as he squares off against Winn.

Underclass Storylines

With four of the bigger names in the 2020 class already committed to major programs, Notre Dame has hardly taken a step back after losing RHP/SS Hunter Greene to graduation and the draft. With impressive up-the-middle defense from SS Devan Ornelas (Texas Christian) and 2B Daylen Reyes (UCLA) combined with front-end Southern California recruits on the mound in LHP/1B Lucas Gordon and RHP Tyler Stromsborg, the Knights’ super sophomores have made huge strides in 2018, and make Notre Dame a contender to win a section title not only this year, but the next two as well. They currently hold the title of the No. 1 team in the state according to PBR California’s POWER 25.

LHP/1B Josh Hahn was able to blossom in the shadow of Huntington Beach’s star draft picks, which included first-rounder 1B/LHP Nick Pratto and second-rounder RHP/C Hagen Danner last season. He has now emerged as one of the top players not only in the state, but also in the country. Possessing a smooth, left-handed stroke, Hahn has developed even more pull-side power in his junior season. Also up to 92 mph from the left side on the mound, the UCLA recruit has the winning DNA that has been seen in the Oilers’ program for some time now.

Comb through draft classes and you are sure to find plenty of big arms from Southern California. This year’s Boras Classic South is stacked with some of the top arms in the 2020 class including USC commits RHP/OF Jared Jones (La Mirada HS) and RHP/C Emilio Morales (La Mirada HS), UCLA recruit RHP Max Rajcic (Orange Lutheran HS), and Miami recruit Christian Rodriguez (Orange Lutheran HS).

One of the top programs in the country, Harvard-Westlake is making its Boras Classic debut with a plethora of underclass talent. The Wolverines are led on the mound by 2019 RHP Sam Hliboki, a Vanderbilt recruit, who features a fastball that reaches into the low 90s, as well as excellent command of an above average breaking ball. Leading the way on offense are star sophomores, OF Pete Crow-Armstrong, another Vanderbilt recruit, and athletic SS Drew Bowser, a Stanford recruit.

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