Prep Baseball Report

SoCal Preseason All-State Underclass: Quick Hits

Les Lukach
State Scouting Director

New Episode LIVE now! At The Yard Podcast

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, CALIF. - The Annual Preseason All State Underclass showcase once again returned to JSerra High School for what has become the best preseason opportunity for players in the region to showcase their fall/winter gains. Since its inception in 2019 the event has seen over 130 players commit to college after their appearance in the event, and based on the roster from 2022 that number is certain to grow to well over 150 players in the coming months. 

Players were put through a traditional pro-style workout with a 60 yard dash, batting practice, defensive workout, with bullpens closing things out. 

Over the coming days and weeks we’ll continue to break down the standouts in the event in the form of leaderboards, positional breakdowns, and scouting reports. Until then we highlight 10 early standouts from the event. 


Easton Hawk SS / RHP / Granada Hills, CA / 2024

It’s hard to decide where Hawk stood out more - at the plate where he swung wood or on the mound - during the showcase. He impressed with a loud round of BP with consistent barrels showing a gap-to-gap approach with some present pull side power. Showed athletic actions on the dirt where he moves well for a player his size with quick, efficient footwork. Hands/glovework suggest he has a chance to play shortstop. On the mound the arm is loose with some whippiness to it. Fastball up to 87 mph that he backs up with a sharp slider and a good splitter.

Andrew Johnson RHP / OF / Capistrano Valley Christian, CA / 2024

A 2021 Future Games participant, Johnson continues his development in rapid fashion. With the fastball more consistently 85 mph, it’s the advancements in the slider that were eye popping. It’s always been a good pitch, but now it’s sharper, more consistent and more of a weapon for Johnson heading into the spring. The arm is loose and whippy, and with a frame at 6’3” 190 that can easily add mass to it, the projection is sky high. The delivery is efficient and repeatable and a consistent arm slot. 

Nathan Aceves RHP / OF / Huntington Beach, CA / 2024

Aceves continues to gain velocity while refining command of his three pitch mix. After seeing him at the Underclass Games in September, Aceves planted himself highly on our spring follow list and did nothing to sway us off that feeling after this weekend. Up to 86 with the fastball it was the slider, and it’s sharp biting action that stood out. While there’s some funk to the delivery, it’s consistent and clean.

Maximo Martinez SS / RHP / Mira Costa , CA / 2024

Perhaps no player opened more eyes than Martinez who took a professional round of BP working all fields and showing some pull side power, before hopping on the mound and working 85-86mph and touching 87mph a couple times. He showed the ability to work the ball to all quadrants of the zone with command of all pitches. The slider has the making of a plus pitch in the future while his feel for the changeup will undoubtedly help this spring. While it’s too early to tell where he projects best beyond his prep years, one thing is for sure, he’s going to do both through high school.


Grayson Wren C / 3B / San Marcos , CA / 2025

We first saw Wren last summer at the PBR Championships while he was playing for his club team. All he did there was make that we always knew when his team was playing. In other words, he dominated. Catch and throw is advanced as he starts low in his setup before exploding into throwing position resulting in sub 2.1 pops consistently. With the bat he shows some developing power and the ability to consistently get the barrel on plane through the zone.

Jack Haferkamp OF / RHP / Santa Fe Christian, CA / 2024

Not many players have made the jumps since summer that Haferkamp has. Since opening up his stance a bit at the plate he’s been smashing baseballs both during BP and in-game. A 6’3” 180-pound outfielder that runs a sub 6.9 60 is usually in high demand by recruiters and Haferkamp will certainly be that come the spring season. A former Future Gamer, Haferkamp has added strength to his frame that can still withstand the addition of more and the gains are showing themselves in the form of power. With a max exit velo of 94.4 mph, Hakerkamp had an impressive line drive percentage of 37.5 with a sweet spot percentage of 50, both of which were near the top for the entire event.

Anthony Murphy OF / RHP / Corona, CA / 2026

Only a 2026 Murphy impressed from the outset of the event with his size (6’ 170) and overall athleticism. At the plate his talent really stood out with a whopping 71% line drive percentage and a max exit velo of 90.8mph. It’s easy to see Murphy adding mass and turning those line drives into over-the-fence power. On the mound he showed some projection as well with a simple, clean and repeatable delivery. Somewhat short stride down the mound with a full circle path in the back, Murphy whips his arm through his 3/4 slot showing the type of command that will undoubtedly earn him innings when he arrives at Corona High School.

Nathan Stiveson SS / 3B / Redondo Union, CA / 2024

One of the more impressive rounds of BP came from Stiveson who showed a consistent gap-to-gap approach while flashing pull side power. It’s easy power that comes from a slightly uppercut swing. With hand speed over 20mph and bat speed over 71mph, Stiveson uses his present strength, particularly in the lower half, to drive balls to all fields with a mix of line drives and ground balls up the middle. Defensively he shows excellent footwork at 3B with enough arm (80mph INF velo) to make all throws from all angles.

Gavin Hottle SS / RHP / N/A, CA / 2026

Only an 8th grader, Hottle has been on our radar for some time now after his performance at last summer’s PBR Championships Tournament. Sprays balls to all fields on a line. At 6’ 170-pounds it’s easy to dream on the frame and when you pair it with his present defensive ability it’s easier to get excited about his future at shortstop. Footwork is advanced for a player his age while the hands/transitions are amongst the best we’ve seen in that age group. Shows enough arm strength (79mph INF velo) and ability to make throws from all angles with the backhand being about as good as we saw at the event.

Nathan Chavez OF / LHP / La Sierra, CA / 2025

Chavez impressed as a legitimate two-way talent both in the outfield and on the bump. Pairs athleticism and good routes with an outfield arm of 88mph. Gets rid of it quickly with throws on the bag flashing carry. On the mound the southpaw showed an easy, loose arm with clean and repeatable mechanics from a lower 3/4 slot that allowed him to tunnel all his pitches from the same slot. Only a freshman there’s plenty of time to add velocity to his already above average command of his pitches, and at 5’11” 150-pounds the frame is undoubtedly going to continue to fill out and get stronger.


East Bay Preseason ID CA 01/16 Ohlone College
Central Coast Preseason ID CA 01/22 Hartnell College
Sacramento/Delta Preseason ID CA 01/23 McBean Stadium
Peninsula/South Bay Preseason ID CA 01/30 Canada College
Super 60 Pro Showcase NATIONAL 02/06 The MAX - McCook, Ill.