Prep Baseball Report

Preseason All-State 2016 Top Players to Watch

By John Cackowski
Director of Scouting

The Prep Baseball Report’s Preseason All-State event will take place this Sunday February 22nd at the Slammers South Facility Englewood, Colorado. This will be the first year of the already packed event, with over 80 players already registered. Prospects from the 2015 and 2016classes will come together in a pro-style workout to strut their stuff in front of the PBR scouting staff.

Colorado is becoming a hot bed for out of state colleges looking to recruit the always underrated talent in our state. In this preview, we look at players to watch who are not committed in the 2016 class participating in the event.

To take a look at the entire Preseason All-State Roster Click Here

2016 Players to watch at Preseason All-State

No. 7 (No. 191 Overall) Matt Burkart, RHP, Eaton
MaxPreps’ Freshmen All-American infielder in 2013, first team All-State each year, already being recruited by multiple Division I schools and followed by multiple MLB teams, throws mid to upper 80s with great knuckle curve, one of the most talented players Eaton has ever had. Good student.

No. 9 (No. 246 Overall) Austin Wood, RHP, Silver Creek
6-foot-5, 200 pounds, the right handed pitcher started making a name for himself on the national level this summer, and is one of the better athletes in our state. An All-State quarterback, Wood touched 90 at times last summer on the mound. Last spring Wood was 2 and 1 with a 3.86 E.R.A in 33 innings striking out 35, but last summer as he grew into his body a little more on Slammers Nationally ranked 16U team he went 5-0 with a .95 E.R.A. in 29 innings striking out 40. Wood also carries a 3.9 G.P.A .

No. 11 (No. 269 Overall) Brice Johnson, LHP, Pine Creek
Standing on the mound Johnson is an imposing 6-foot-6 pitcher who is still growing into his body. Tall in his set-up, Johnson pitches in the mid 80's from a high 3/4 arm with good slot and good extention to the plate. He also has a  11/5 mid 70's curve ball and a change up that sits around 73 mph. Pitching for Pine Creek High School, Johnson had to wait his turn last spring due to the depth the Pine Creek squad had. Coming of a strong summer pitching for Slammers 16U team, Johnson looks to dominate in the spring. A phenomenal student, with his grades and physical projectibility the sky is the limit for Johnson.

No. 15 Nate Sweeney, RHP, Cherry Creek
6-3, 180 pound RHP/SS. Sweeney is really coming on this fall and winter. On 1/9/15 Sweeney already seemed to be in pitching shape touching 88-90 mph at the Slammers Pitching Showcase  He has jumped in velocity since last summer. Gets good extension to the mound with a high 3/4 arm slot with good leg drive. If he can throw strikes consistently this spring he's going to be a force. Has a good chance to move up in the 2016 rankings.

No. 16 Bailey Collins, OF, Dakota Ridge
5-foot-11, 175 pounds. Bats and throws left. Collins is a very good looking outfielder with a lot of range in center.  One of the better outfielders in the 2016 class in Colorado. Ran a 6.9 60 time at the Colorado Top Prospect Games last summer, and had a 4.21 Home to First time. Excellent approach at plate. Good eye in the zone.

No. 18 Cole McKissock, SS, Air Academy
Varsity letter as a sophomore with a batting avg. of .521 in regular season and .475 through post season. McKissock was a force offensively at 4A for the Kadets and continued to improve in the summer and fall. McKissock joined the lineup last spring late and was there to stay, hitting .476 on the season.

No. 19 Aaron Dammel, MIF, Highlands Ranch
6-foot-1, 170 pound MIF bats left handed. Has very soft hands and plays a solid second base with good feet. Hits from a tall balanced stance with smooth load back, Dammel lets the ball get deep in the strike zone and has ability to waste a lot of pitches with good gap to gap power with majority of hits going to left field. Has shot up a lot in the last year, and when he fills out will have the ability to drive ball over fence. Good student with 3.84 GPA.

No. 21 Dalton Lind, RHP, Eaton
6-foot-3, 180 pounds. Starting to throw hard in mid to upper 80’s with sharp knuckle curve. Has a lot of room to throw harder only being 175. Player to follow this spring. 3rd Eaton Red in history to throw no-hitter as a Sophomore. Undefeated summer record against non-graduate teams. #2 starting pitcher heading into 2015 season as Junior.

No. 22 Taylor Dye, RHP, Columbine
6-foot-5, 215-pound right-handed pitcher with projectable frame impressed as one of the top pitching prospects at the Colorado Top Prospect Games.  Works from a short, loose,  ¾ arm slot, simple delivery, picks leg straight up to balance point, crunches up  slightly at balance point, stride direction stays in line with home plate, lands slightly closed at foot strike.  Fastball sat 82-84 mph with sink, thrown for strikes consistently.  65-67 mph curveball flashed 10/5 shape with good tilt and occasional late bit, other times pulled off the pitch a bit making shape erratic.  Showed plus feel of a 72-73 mph changeup with fade to his arm side thrown consistently for strikes. Strike thrower for a big kid. Columbine's #1 Pitcher going into 2015 season.  If he stays taller could get better extension towards plate. Can't ignore size and build. player to follow and potential Division-1 arm.

No. 24 Brandon Maes, C, Pueblo South
6-foot, 210 pounds, Maes looks to fill in for graduated Corey Voss behind the plate in 2015 who was drafted in the 34th round in 2014 by the Colorado Rockies. As a sophomore, Maes was an offensive force. Maes lead the team in RBI's (25), Home Runs, (4), Doubles (7), and hit .426. We look forward to getting a look at Maes at the event this weekend.

No. 25 Ryan Vottiero, OF, Regis Jesuit
5-foot-6, 160 pounds bats and throws left. Vottiero looks to be a spark plug for the Jesuits in 2015. Last year on a team that landed in the 5A state championship game which was loaded with Division 1 senior talent , Vottiero was still able to still crack the lineup and hit .500 in minimal at bats but scored 17 runs as a pinch runner. Covers good ground in the outfield, look for Vottiero to be a leadoff/two-hole type of hitter for the Jesuits who gets on base alot this spring.

No. 26, Grant Schroeder, RHP, Grandview
6-foot-3, 165 pound right handed pitcher impressed with 2 good innings against the Colorado Fall Elite Team. Fastball was 85-86 mph from a 3/4 arm slot. Curveball flashed late tilt in 10-5 direction coming in at 70-71 mph. Was square to the plate with good extention towards the catcher. When we saw in in June at Denver-Metro Prospect ID ran a 7.25 60, with a 80 mph exit velocity.

No. 27 Chris Diehl, C/RHP, Rocky Mountain
5-foot-11, 185 pounds. Coming off a strong summer for the Lobos, Diehl will be looking to make an impact this spring looking to find a place in the lineup of the defending 5A state champions. Diehl might get some time in the outfield and on the mound this spring as the Lobos return starting senior catcher Garrett Hammer. Diehl played on the Atlanta Braves Scout team this past fall. 

No. 29 Jordan Scheufele, RHP/OF, Fairview
6-foot-3, 207-pound RHP with strong/athletic frame, power pitcher with good leg drive, fastball sat 81-83 topping at 84, showed good command of 70 mph curveball with sharp break, also flashed a 72 mph slider with good arm speed on all pitches. At the plate the big right handed hitter shows quick hands through the zone and excellent power to the left center gap.

No. 32 Billy Moreland, SS, Heritage
5-foot-11, 175 pound SS. Moreland had a strong summer and is one of the anchors at Heritage that is junior dominated. Coming off a strong summer and fall, Morelan is already one of the better defensive shortstops in the tough Continental League, Moreland displays a strong arm across the diamond. Offensively Moreland looks to be a top of the order type hitter for the Eagles.

No. 34 Ty Lightley, OF/MIF/RHP, Dakota Ridge
5-foot-9, 160 pounds, Lightley has been a starting varsity MIF/OF/RHP  summer before sophomore year.
An All-Conferenece Honorable Mention last year as a sophomore, the versatile, do-it-all Lightley will be a spark-player for the Eagles this spring.

No. 36 Desmond Pineda, RHP, Arapahoe
5-foot-9, 170 pound RHP has a bull-dog attitude on mound and carries himself with confidence and swagger. Does a good job holding runners on. On Friday night got hit up a little for first time in awhile, however still had good presence. Fastball was consistently 82-83 but touched 85. Has a nasty change-up coming in at 73 with sink. Delivery is max effort and deceiving from a short 10/5 arm slot. Good student with 3.9 GPA

No. 37 Braden Smith, OF, Lakewood
5-foot-11, 175-pound right-handed hitting outfielder impressed with legitimate physical athletic ability.  Hits from a balanced athletic setup, hands load back smoothly, creating good separation. Has leg kick that he gets down early and shows explosion with his lower half. Bat speed is fast with a short path and good extension producing line drive gap-gap power producing 81 mph exit velocity off the tee.  Threw 75 mph from the outfield from long, loose, high ¾ arm slot with good hands, playing through the baseball aggressively when fielding. Showed exceptional range in center, while also throwing a runner out at home during the games. Impressed everyone with running a 6.60 and 6.72 60. Athletic outfielder had a good day 2 going 2-2 with a 4.21 home to first time.

No. 39 Jared Chick, MIF, Roosevelt
Jared Chick, 2B/MIF, Roosevelt: No. 39 2016
5-foot-10, 160-pound right-handed hitting MIF, hits from a tall setup with a short stride stride combined with a leg kick, hands move back during load producing 75 mph exit velocity off the tee. Has a good approach at the plate with a level swing producing gap to gap power. Ran an impressive 6.90 60, and was 4.25 from home to first. We have had Jared at a 6.8 60 before.

No. 40 Ryan Faircloth, OF, Dakota Ridge
5-foot-10, 150-pound athletic outfielder impressed with an outfield velocity at 78 mph, but we have seen him throw 81 from the position before. Throws from a long ¾ slinging arm slot with some accuracy.  Hits from an athletic slightly closed setup, load is minimal with hands already back with a good approach up the middle of the field. Showed good bat speed with a short level bat path produced several line drives from gap-to-gap with 80 mph exit velocity. Runs a 7.1 60 yard dash.

Related Material