Prep Baseball Report

Brewers Area Code Tryout Report

Steve Doherty
SoCal Area Scout

The initial Milwaukee Brewers Area Code tryout took place at Westmont College in Santa Barbara on July 6th and 7th. The tryout roster was chalk full of future professional and Division I talent as it once again drew the best of the best from around Southern California. Every year the Brewers Area Code Team Architects - GM Corey Rodriguez (MIL), Manager Josh Belovsky (MIL), and area scouts Wynn Pelzer (MIL), Gary Patchett (SEA) ,Tom Myers (CHC), & JJ Altobelli (BOS) - have a tough job constructing a roster of prospects that will compete against the best players from around the country in the nations best showcase event. Year-after-year the Brewers draft players that have played for their Area Code Team. In 2018 alone there were three players selected by the Big League club that participated on the Area Code team. Brice Turang, SS (Corona Santiago HS, CA.) selected 21st overall (SB $3,411,100) $379,500 over slot. Micah Bello, OF (Hilo HS, HI) 73rd overall (SB $550K) $274,900 under slot, and Jared Platero, RHP (Beckman HS, CA.) 23rd round, did not sign (Long Beach St.).

In 2017, the Brewers drafted and signed Je'Von Ward (Gahr HS, CA) in the 12th round, along with Karlos Morales (South Hills HS, CA) in the 25th round of the 2017 MLB Draft after both participated in the 2016 Area Code Games as part of the Brewers team.

In addition to that, the 2017 Brewers Area Code Team produced players that were drafted to other organizations in the 2018 MLB Draft, they include: Matt McLain, SS, 1st round, 25th overall, Arizona Diamondbacks (Beckman HS, CA) (pick value: $2.61M) did not sign (UCLA). Cole Roederer, OF, 2nd round, 77th overall, Chicago Cubs (Hart HS, CA) (SB $1.2M) $424.9K over slot. Kingston Liniak, OF, 4th round, 105th overall, Detroit Tigers (Mission Hills HS, CA) (SB $900K) $366,700 over slot. Julian Boyd, OF, 26th round, Chicago Cubs (St. John Bosco HS, CA) did not sign (Nevada). Kameron Guangorena, C, 36th round, Toronto Blue Jays (St. John Bosco HS, CA) did not sign (Cal State Fullerton). Chandler Champlain, RHP, 38th round, LA Angels (Santa Margarita HS, CA) did not sign (USC).

My point is two-fold, if you make the Milwaukee Brewers Area Code Team, #1, you're really good at baseball, and #2 you have a good chance of being drafted by the Brewers or some other professional organization.

It's challenging to get worthy looks and evaluate position players receiving only 12-15 hacks in a BP session, 5 ground ball/fly ball opportunities, and 3-4 AB's off live pitching. For pitchers, it's even tougher; they only get 15-20 pitches total in a live game situation to display their stuff off live hitters.

There were plenty of standout players in attendance that garnered attention on these 2 days. Let's take a look at a few that caught my eye from each day.

Day 1 – July 6th 2018

Day 1 of the tryouts consisted of players from LA County, Ventura, Santa Barbara, and Kern Counties. There were able players that were on the tryout roster, but not in attendance due to summer travel ball commitments. Here are a few in my opinion that could, and should be in attendance at the final tryout at USC this week: Damon Hale, OF, John Glenn (uncommitted), Rylan Thomas, OF, Oaks Christian (USC), Jared Thomas, C, Orange Lutheran (Miami), Charles Acker, LHP, Maranatha (USC), Wes Burton, RHP, Winward (Miss. St.), Andrew Dalquist, RHP, Redondo Union (Arizona), Jarred Karros, RHP, Mira Costa (UCLA), and Danny Veloz, RHP, Village Christian (SDSU)


Andrew Divine, RHP, Simi Valley HS (Texas Tech) FB: sat 92-94, touched 95 once. CB: 72-74 w/ sharp bite. Has up-tempo wind-up and delivery.

Dawson Netz, RHP, Maranatha HS (Arizona) FB: 87-90 w/ arm side tail. CB: 72-74 w/ tilt and late break. CH: 80-82 w/ fading action.

Sam Hliboki, RHP, Harvard-Westlake HS (Vanderbilt) FB: 86-90. SL: 76-78

Joey Estes, RHP, Paraclete HS (uncommitted) FB: 88-91. CB: 72-73

Corbin Barker, RHP, Immanuel Christian (Univ. San Diego) FB: 88-91 SL: 77-79

Merrick Baldo, RHP, Mira Costa HS (LMU) FB: 89-91. CB: 72-74

Jake Thau, RHP, Redondo Union HS (Long Beach State) FB: 89-92. CB: 73-74. SL: 76-77.


Brandt Voth, Murrieta Mesa HS (uncommitted, de-committed from UCSB) Switch hitter, Can pitch too. A great 2-way option

Josh Buckley, Grace Brethren HS (uncommitted) Quiet receiver with soft hands who moves well behind the plate.

Johnny Tincher, Birmingham HS (uncommitted) Elite defender with a big arm; shows a good hit tool.


Ja'craron (Jaja) Bellinger, MIF, Carson HS (uncommitted) Twitchy, strong and athletic, Bellinger will be a two-sport four-year starter at Carson.

Jashia Morrissey, MIF, Venice HS (uncommitted) Quick twitch athlete that is just beginning to tap into his potential defensively and with the bat. 

Mahki Backstrom, 1B, Serra HS, LA (uncommitted) Big time power potential; Reminds many of former Serra standout Dominic Smith.

Andrew Duran, 1B, Northview HS (uncommitted) Projectable power with present bat speed. Room to fill out.

David Hays, 1B, St John Bosco HS (Nevada) Big power potential and a steady glove at 1B.


Erik Anderson, Palos Verdes HS (uncommitted) Intriguing prospect both with the bat and defensively; shows flashes of power with plenty of room to add strength.

James Kobylt, Brentwood HS (Washington) Really good bat-to-ball skills; shows the ability to go the other way with some pop.

Garret Monheim, West Ranch HS (uncommitted) Left-handed hitting outfielder that shows gap-to-gap abilities; Runs and defends very well.

Cole Kitchen, El Cammino Real HS (Santa Clara) Smooth left-handed swing that generates line drive all over the field; shows flashes of power.

Dylan Beavers, Mission Prep HS (Cal) Legit two-way guy that touches 93 on the mound; Shows a big arm in OF to go with a consistent approach at plate.

Oliver Gatica, Crespi HS (uncommitted) Long, lean, athletic build with present strength and room for more. Gatica's bat is his calling card.

Day 2 – July 7th 2018

A whole new group of players descended upon Westmont College for the 2nd day of Area Code Team tryouts. It was the players from Orange County, San Diego, San Bernardino & Riverside County's turn to show the Brewers Area Code Team staff what they could bring to the table. Poring over the talented roster, we found that there were 10-15 players on the tryout roster that were not in attendance. Most, if not all of the missing players were in Georgia competing in summer travel ball tourneys. Some of the missing-in-action include: Spencer Jones, LHP, La Costa Canyon (Vanderbilt), Gabe Briones, C, MLK (USC), Michael Carpentier, C, Yucaipa (uncommitted, de-committed from TCU), Hunter Cope, RHP, Mater Dei (Arizona), Cody Freeman, MIF, Etiwanda (Baylor), Joe Naranjo, 1B, Ayala (CSUF), Riley Carter, 1B, La Costa Canyon (Air Force), Kaden Hopson, C, Redlands Valley East (Arizona), Ted Burton, MIF, Edison (Michigan), Reece Berger, MIF, Corona Del Mar (SDSU), and Marcus Johnson, RHP, Etiwanda (Duke). There is no doubt that the above-mentioned will be in attendance at USC on July 14th for the final tryout.


Quinn Mathews, LHP, Aliso Niguel HS (Stanford) FB: 88-91 w/ heavy sink. SL: 79 CH: 78-80

Tyson Heaton, RHP, Yucaipa HS (BYU) FB: 90-91 with excel deception, and cut action, hides ball well. CB: 72-73. CH: 81-83

Alec Rath, RHP, Servite HS (LMU) FB: 86-89. CB: 72-75. Commands well. Has CH but did not offer.

Evan Fitterer, RHP, Aliso Niguel HS (UCLA) FB: 90-92. CB: 73. CH: 81-82

Johnathan Guzman, RHP, Orange Lutheran HS (San Diego St.) FB: FB: 87-88. SL: 74-79. CH: 76-79

Derek Diamond, RHP, Ramona HS (Stanford) FB: 88-90. CB: 69-71. CH: 75-77


Darius Perry, La Mirada HS (uncommitted) Cannon attached to shoulder. Accurate. Nimble for a big guy. Threw a runner out in the game, clocked a legit 1.90.

Isaac Ramirez, Sonora HS (St. Mary's, CA)


Brooks Lee, MIF, San Luis Obispo HS (Cal Poly SLO) Slick fielding shortstop who shows consistency with the bat.

Michael Curialle, SS, J Serra Catholic HS (UCLA) Big power projection from an elite position. Consistent, loud barrel contact.

Tyresse Turner, MIF, Gahr HS (Cal State Northridge) Quick twitch, athletic player with instincts.

JJ Cruz, SS/3B, Gahr HS (Cal State Fullerton) Hit 4 HR's off 12 pitches during BP, squared the ball up a couple times in game as well.


Caiden Matheny, Murrieta Mesa HS (Washington) Big arm; present and projectable power in the bat.

Jasiah Dixon, Orange Lutheran HS (USC) Big time speed, can cover gaps in the outfield.

Mac Bingham, Torrey Pines HS (USC) Big arm and current power to all fields and over-the-fence capabilities.

Tyler Weiner, Murrieta Valley HS (uncommitted) Above average arm. Untapped power in bat

Edward Pelc, Huntington Beach HS (Univ. San Diego) Plays with confidence, solid hit tool. Can pitch too. Great 2-way option.