Prep Baseball Report

Updated 2017 Rankings

John Cackowski
State Director 

In the fall of 2014 PBR Colorado released our first ever 2015, 2016, and 2017 rankings. In the past year Prep Baseball Report Colorado has had the opportunity to cover amateur baseball like no other organization has ever been able to do before in the state of Colorado. Between scouting numerous games from our last 2017 rankings posted in March, and having a great opportunity to see more 2017 grads at the Preseason All-State and Junior Sunbelt Tryout, we were able to move our 2017 ranking list to 185 players.

Staying at No. 1 is RHP Caleb Sloan of Regis Jesuit. Recently committed to Texas Christian, the 6-foot-3, 210-pound right hand pitcher stands tall and stays tall through his delivery.  He gets good lower leg drive and extension out front on his pitches.  Body stays in-line and stays square on his follow through.  Arm is over the top with good speed on all pitches.This session consisted of a 91 MPH fastball that is thrown on both sides of the plate, a 73 MPH curve with 11/5 break and a 76 MPH change that works away from the right hand hitter.  We have had Sloan up to 92 mph in a game. He finished with a 77 MPH slider that has good back door break to a right hand hitter. On the season Sloan pitched 20 innings for the Jesuits going 2-0 with a 3.73 ERA. Sloan struck out 24. 

Moving to No. 2 in our rankings is switch hitting catcher Casey Opitz of Heritage High School. A 5-foot-11, 170-pound switch hitting catcher.  Ran a 7.13 60. From the left side he stands open with a short stride to come square.  Level swing path with good extension.  84 MPH exit velocity.  From the right side he is square with a good level path to the ball with same exit velocity.  Behind the plate he shows quick actions on balls in the dirt and soft hand while receiving.  He showcased a 79 mph accurate arm with pop-times of 1.81-190. Also plays shortstop. Will be interesting to see if he signs as a catcher or MIF. Could end up being an "elite" second basemen at the next level, but has D1 catching skills as well. This spring Opitz was outstanding hitting .424 and scored 23 runs for the Eagles. Opitz also had 8 stolen bases. 

Our No. 3 ranked 2017 is another Texas Christian Commit RHP James Notary of Broomfield. Notary pitched 35 innings this spring going 4-1 with a 1.80 ERA striking out 58 batters. Notary is a 6-foot-2 and 185 pounds. 6-foot-2, 180 pounds. Notary has good mechanics with a square, in-line over the top delivery that now touches 90 mph  Good leg drive towards home that produces  good down angle and extension. Curveball is 12-6 shape with good tight spin at 71 mph. Change has some fade at 72. 

Moving to No. 4 is RHP Drake Davis of Raltson Valley. Recently committing to Arizona State, the 6-foot-1, 170 pound pitcher is an aggressive pitcher. Davis has a herky jerky motion which can be intimidating to a hitter, but he will probably have to tone down a bit not to exert too much energy, but he comes at you with 88 mph fastballs and he is all arms and legs. Aside from his fastball, Davis threw his changeup aggressively and for strikes. This past spring Davis pitched 33 innings going 2-2 and struck out 44 batters posting a 3.18 ERA. 

One of our biggest risers moving up to No. 5 is LHP Connor Nantkes of Cherokee Trail. Nantkes had a great run at the end of the year to help the Cougars win their first 5A Baseball State Championship. Recently committed to Washington State. A 6-foot-2, 180-pound left hand hitting 1B/LHP runs a 7.30 60.  Balanced at the plate with a quick stride and load.  Weight transfers forward on the swing and he shows good extension out front.  Swing stays level and he lives in the gaps.  Showcases a 92 MPH exit velocity.  Athletic in the field at first base with good feet and instincts.  He moves well on balls to his glove side and delivers from a high ¾ arm angle.  He showcases an accurate 82 MPH arm across the diamond.  On the mound he starts slightly closed and gets good balance and drive to the plate.  He lands in-line with the plate and falls off to the third base side on his finish.  He throws from a high ¾ arm slot and features an 85 MPH fastball with slight tail and a 70 MPH curve with sharp break.  He finished his showcase with a 74 MPH change that moves into the right hand hitter.  

Enough Reading about them to see the list click here.

Here is a sneak peak at the top 10

1 Caleb Sloan RHP
2 Casey Opitz C
3 James Notary RHP
4 Drake Davis RHP
5 Conner Nantkes LHP
6 John Sorensen SS
7 Liam Eddy RHP
8 Tyson Hays C
9 Jack Winkler SS
10 Carter Akerfelds RHP