Prep Baseball Report

PBR CA Preseason Invitational Notebook

Joey Cohen
SoCal Area Scout

New Episode LIVE now! At The Yard Podcast

Southern California - The PBR California Preseason Invitational put together 14 of the best HS teams in Southern California and had them face off. Throughout the ten days, there was multiple ranked pitcher/hitter matchups with plenty of pro scouts in attendance. I took in 10+ games throughout the Invitational where several players stood out. Some of these players are draft talent for the 2022/2023 draft and some are uncommitted players that held their own against the best. Below I highlight 17 players that shined with quick notes on how they performed. 

Orange Lutheran

'22 SS Mikey Romero (LSU)

I got to start with the Invitational Champs and SS Mikey Romero. The '22 LSU commit throughout OLU's four games showed why he’s being seen as a possible high draft selection come this summer. The hit tool is advanced as it gets for a HS player in California. He stays relaxed in the box with a calm yet confident approach. The load is smooth and rhythmic and his loose hands deliver the bat on a on-plane path through the hitting zone with natural feel for the barrel. Romero collected multiple extra-base hits throughout the four games against quality HS arms. His best hit of the weekend was his clutch bases clearing triple against Huntington Beach that put them out of reach. 

'22 RHP Louis Rodriguez (TCU)

On Day 3 of the tourney I was running all over Great Park and was able to catch ‘22 TCU commit Louis Rodriguez’s relief outing against Huntington Beach and he was lights out. Ended up going four shutout innings while striking out eight. Rodriguez has a loose quick arm and he moves fast and hard down the mound. His CT/SL combo was lethal and produced confused takes and awkward swings and misses. When he’s creating good depth with those two pitches, he’s practically unhittable. CT was 85-88 and his SL was 80-82 reaching 3000 rpms. 



Harvard Westlake

'24 RHP Thomas Bridges (Uncommitted)

Harvard Westlake went 3-1 this Invitational with Thomas Bridges earning two of those wins. Bridges didn't have his best stuff in his first outing against Foothill but competed and was able to get through five innings giving up two runs. However, he was lights out against JSerra on Monday night going five shutout innings and struck out five. His FB/SL command was on point and he didn’t give JSerra much to hit throughout the outing. FB was 84-87 showing great glove side command and his SL was 74-77 showing sharp break and was tunneled well out the hand. In terms of his mechanics, he has one of the cleanest deliveries out there. He uses a short and quick arm action and is efficient down the mound with good direction through home. He is no doubt a top uncommitted '24 arm.

'22 C Jacob Galloway (Texas Tech)

Jacob Galloway was my favorite catcher to watch defend this Invitational. I watched him throw out six runners on the base paths this tourney and that was only in the games I took in. The catch and throw he displayed along with his advanced blocking and framing skills to me make him one of the best defensive catchers in his class. Galloway also showed up with the bat and every time I see him hit he has some the best ABs regardless of whether he gets a hit or not. He rarely leaves the strike zone and grinds out ABs to force pitchers to throw multiple pitches. His swing is compact and works on a nice level barrel path. He also looks noticeably stronger throughout his build so I’m expecting him to hit for a bit more power this year.



Capo Valley

'23 RHP Owen Geiss (LBSU)

Really enjoyed watching ‘23 LBSU commit Owen Geiss pitch against Foothill last tuesday. The lean athletic RHP showed repeatable mechanics with a quick/clean arm action. Geiss lands slightly closed at foot strike which allows him to hide the ball well and adds some deception. His fastball was 85-87 throughout his five innings where he showed solid command of it while flashing some arm side run. His CB was 74-76 and it was one of my favorite breaking balls I saw this Invitational. He threw it with confidence in any count and it produced a lot of whiffs. It’s a larger slurvy breaker with a good combination of depth and sweep. Geiss ended up striking out ten against a loaded Foothill lineup. Excited to see the numbers he puts up on the mound this spring. 

'22 RHP Brady Disbro (Ole Miss)

‘22 Ole Miss Brady Disbro got to throw in the final day of the Invitational and he was able to bounce back after a rough first start. It was my first ever look at him and he has a noticeable physical frame that is well proportioned. Delivery is relatively simple and under control. Had a dominant outing against Mira Costa where his FB/CB combo was really working. FB was 90-92 early and settled 88-89 flashing some armside run. His SL was 76-79 throughout the outing and it showed a good combination of both depth and late break to induce swing and misses. Final line was 5 shutout innings giving up 3H/2BB/7K. 



'24 RHP/SS Vinny Hudson (Arizona)

Got to take in two Arizona commit Vinny Hudson outings this tourney. Hudson competed in both starts against two talented lineups in OLU and Redondo. Hudson has a loose quick arm that accelerates well into release with good extension. FB was 85-87 in both outings showing nice ride up in the zone which proved hard to barrel. Hudson is still developing his secondaries but both showed upside with this breaking ball showing large break and his downward CH inducing swing and miss over it. Hudson is a '24 that's still filling out his highly projectable lean/athletic build and is still raw on the mound which leaves a lot to be excited about with two more years of development.


Mira Costa

'22 RHP Alex Rohm (uncommitted)

Checked out ‘22 uncommitted Alex Rohm twice this Invitational against both Yucaipa and Capo Valley. Yucaipa got the best of him on a couple of FB mistakes in that first outing but he bounced back in his second start going five innings and only allowing 1H/1R/7K. Rohm uses a short and slight stab arm action and maintains consistent arm speed and slots on all his pitches. His FB was 83-86 throughout the outing but his best pitch was his hard and sharp slider that was 76-78. Rohm showed great feel and command of that slider to use early in the counts for strikes and for chases off the plate. Any program that still has some room for a quality ‘22 arm should look this way. 

'25 OF Win Gurney (Uncommitted)

‘25 OF Win Gurney was easily the most physical freshman I saw this Invitational. Has a mature build with present strength throughout. The story with him is with the bat where he has truly advanced bat speed for his age. He destroyed a mid 80s FB for a no-doubt HR against Chaminade and laced a double into the LC gap against Corona. There is some present swing and miss on breaking stuff but the upside is that and there is no doubt the elite competition he faced this weekend will help him. Definitely a name to remember down the line.




'23 RHP Tomas Lopez (Columbia)

Only checked out one Redondo Union game and was able to see ‘23 Columbia commit Tomas Lopez put together a solid outing. Went five innings giving up one run on four hits. Pounded the zone throughout the outing inducing weak contact. FB was 86-87 early and settled in at 83-85. His breaking ball was 69-72 and he was able to manipulate the shape on it whether that be added more depth and vertical break or getting more sweep and horizontal action on it. Mechanically he works in good direction with his energy and momentum being kept through the target. Lopez has a quick arm that noticeably accelerated later in the action. He still has some room for growth in the build as he has a lean athletic frame that can add on some mass. Excited to see where he’ll be by his senior year. 


'22 OF Noah Williams (Uncommitted)

If you know me, it should come to no surprise that I’m a big Noah Williams fan. Williams is a toolsy player that fields, runs, and hits at an advanced level, but it all starts with the left handed stroke that found a ton of barrels this Invitational. He stays compact and connected with a good uphill path towards the baseball. Has noticeably added some muscle for this season and it's seen with his bat speed that has ticked up without him having to make big moves in his load/swing. The approach has noticeably tightened up where he doesn’t chase and stays within himself in hitters counts. Williams might be my favorite uncommitted '22 and I'm confident he's going to put up numbers this season. 



'22 SS/3B Jacob Reimer (UW)

This was my first ever look at Yucaipa and I was very impressed with Jacob Reimer’s overall play throughout the Invitational. The UW commit showed out on both sides of the ball and I ended up becoming a big fan of the swing. Uses a toe tap trigger while his hands load in rhythm. Barrel stays connected in his swing while his hands work loose and free. Gets good leverage by creating some shoulder tilt at the start of his swing and staying through that tilt post contact. Reimer collected two hits in the first game against Mira Costa and showed off his pull-side HR power against Chaminade when he hit a go-ahead HR in the 12th inning of a marathon game. Defensively he made several difficult plays at SS throughout the 4 games showing smooth actions, good instincts, soft hands, and an accurate arm. If he continues the hot play, I'll be interested to hear what the draft talk will be by the end of spring. 

'22 C Luke Scherrer (Cal Poly SLO)

Of all the players I saw this Invitational ‘23 Cal Poly SLO commit Luke Scherrer probably took the best overall hacks. Became a fan the first time I saw him this past January at our Preseason All-State Upperclass where he put on a show in BP. The swing is as efficient as it gets in terms of how it generates easy bat speed. Scherrer uses a toe tap trigger while his hands pullback into a strong early connection position. His barrel then takes a direct path towards the baseball where he makes consistent contact out front. He had some of the hardest hit balls of the Invitational with one of those hits being a no-doubter HR against Mira Costa in his first game. Scherrer’s continued success with the bat is quickly putting him as one of the premier catchers in his class. 

'23 RHP Carter Elliot (ASU)

‘23 Arizona State commit Carter Elliot had one of the more dominant outings of the Invitational in his start against Chaminade going six giving up 2ER/2H/11K. Worked with a two-pitch FB/SL mix where the FB was 87-89 early (settled 85-86) and his SL was 76-77.  His FB/SL combo was working from start to finish and they complemented each other well throwing off the same slot and tunneling well out the hand. Worked glove side throughout the outing which produced a lot of swings and misses when his SL would run off the plate against RHHs. Has an athletic build that moves well down the mound with good lower half mechanics. Elliot's performance left me excited to see more in the future. 



'22 RHP Aric Berg (Fordham)

The was the first time I’ve seen Aric Berg throw since last spring and he showed out in his two innings against Yucaipa striking out five. I’ve always been a fan of his stuff and it looks like he has taken a step forward. Had some drive knee pain in his two innings of work that I believe hindered his FB velo but it didn’t seem to bother him much. FB was 86-89 (2380-2500) where it showed good late life and proved hard to square up. However it’s all about his CB which is a larger VB breaker that he has great command for which that sat 74-76 (2700-2800 rpm). Is athletic down the hill with a quick arm and should continue to strike out his fair share of batters this year with his advanced strikeout stuff. 

'23 RHP Cristian Brewster (USC)

‘23 USC commit Cristian Brewster has quickly become one of my favorite ‘23 arms. My first look at him was back during MLK weekend in January and in a quick one-month span he seemed to fine tune some things on the mound with his stuff. Was dominant against a Mira Costa going 6.1 giving up 1ER/2H/10K. FB was 87-91 showing good life through the zone. CB moved more 11/5 with sharp break and solid command consistently locating it low in the zone at 71-73 for a lot of whiffs over it. Is still raw on the mound as he only started focusing on throwing in the past year but there is going to be a lot to like if he continues on the trajectory he is currently on. 




'23 RHP Andrew Parker (Uncommitted)

Uncommitted ‘23 Andrew Parker might have put together the best two-start performance of any pitcher at the Invitational. I saw him in Foothill’s second game against Capo Valley where he was awesome for six shutout innings throwing just 66 pitches. Parker worked fast and established that tempo early and maintained it. He was able to command three pitches for strikes. His FB sat at 84-86 which showed some armside sink and proved hard to barrel. CH was was 74-75 and was his more effective secondary especially against RHHS causing many out front swings and whiffs over it with it’s downward movement. His mechanics are easy and simple which allow him to repeat consistently. In Foothill's final game he went CG giving up 2ER/5H/4K. 



SoCal Rising Stars: Los Angeles CA 02/27 O'Malley Field
SoCal Rising Stars: Orange County CA 03/20 JSerra High School
SoCal Rising Stars: Inland Empire CA 04/24 Corona High School
SoCal Rising Stars Games CA 06/04 O'Malley Field