Prep Baseball Report

Georgia 2023 Rankings Update - 10 Must See Sleepers

Phil Kerber & Justin Goetz
PBR Georgia Staff

Many well known, even legendary MLB players were once sleepers without offers from big colleges right away, and were drafted in less notable rounds with zero or very little recognition. MLB All Star and AL batting champion Tim Anderson had one offer out of high school, from East Central Community College in Mississippi. 2 years later, he was a 1st Rd draft pick.

The depth of Georgia’s 2023 class shines brightest from No. 75 to 150, with every player listed below having the future potential to play at baseball’s highest level. In any other class, this entire list would be ranked inside the top 100.

We feel the players on this list will serve as a great reminder that projection is a strength, if the player has the right makeup and aptitude. Also that tools and versatility come in all shapes and sizes.

Ready to mash at No. 85 is 3B Ryan Ford (Winder-Barrow; Uncommitted). The 6 foot 1, 225 pound lumberjack with enormous strength. He repeats his swing at a high level and his hands work inside the ball consistently for backspin to all fields. Ford has good rhythm at the plate and loose relaxed hands, which allow him to be as quick to the ball as he is strong. This hoss stays on his legs from the start of his swing to finish, creating power from the ground up and staying connected with the upper half of his body. He can really run for his size! Expect him to be one of the better hitters on the summer circuit. 

Moving on up nearly 150 spots to No. 95 is RHP Mason Trucks (Pike County; Uncommitted). Trucks has a strong, durable frame at 6-foot-1, 195-pounds. He has an efficient arm action, working short and clean on the back-side. The right-hander is able to create deception throughout his delivery, as he does a good job hiding the ball and remaining closed. The fastball sits in the mid-to-upper 80s with sinking action. He has good feel for three pitches, including a fading changeup he can pull the string on and a 12/6 curveball. Trucks has pitched big innings this spring and has been an integral part of Pike County’s Final 4 run.

Not to be lost in the wealth of arms at North Oconee High School is the switch-hitting SS/OF Jack Fabris (Uncommitted), who debuts at No. 102. A standout on the gridiron, Fabris is a highly athletic 6-foot-1, 180-pounds, filled out with twitchy, lean muscle. Everything he does oozes athleticism. His hands are quick and whippy at the plate with a level path that lags through the zone. Fabris is an all gas, no brakes type of player, giving everything on every play. He puts pressure on the defense with his legs, and has advanced range at shortstop or center field. The combination of athleticism and tools are highly intriguing, and with more refinement, Fabris can rise even higher.  

Clocking in at No. 105 with a chip on his shoulder is C/IF Kyle Robitzsch (North Cobb; Uncommitted). The 5 foot 9, 170 pound swiss army knife has a lean muscled medium frame and strong lower half. There’s not a position on the diamond Robitzsch can’t play. He has obvious D1 potential at two premium defensive positions, C and SS. The grinder checks all the boxes behind the dish - from receiving and blocking to catch and throw, he can completely shut down the run game. At SS he makes instinctive reads with good footwork, has a lightning quick exchange, and a strong & accurate arm from all angles. His good approach at the plate makes him very difficult to strike out, and makes hard contact often with a level swing plane. Surely won’t be uncommitted for much longer!

Gliding to No. 114 is SS/QB1 Jacari Hardaway (Forest Park; Uncommitted). At 6 foot 3, 170 pounds, this is exactly what you’re looking for when the team gets off the bus. Hardaway impacted the game in every way possible during our Minority Baseball Prospects Tourney in early March. This future D1er is the starting QB at Forest Park who slings a nasty deep ball with just a flick of his wrist, and has plenty of arm for the left side of the infield. His football speed translates perfectly to the baseball diamond, as he shows lightning quick actions at SS and on the basepaths. Jacari has a tall setup at the plate with naturally smooth swing mechanics, impressive separation timing and body control for his size. Has a well sequenced lower half and creates big leverage. He should develop into something special in the near future. 

Two-way stud LHP/1B Caleb Fones (Lanier; Uncommitted) comes in at No. 118. The big draw here - you get a projectable 6 foot 1, 195 pound frame who will at worst be a consistent contributor on the bump or at the plate. At best, he's a two way star at whatever school he commits to that completely changes your team. So we’ve got a very high floor and a low risk. On the bump Fones has a very well balanced delivery with great tempo, and a deceptive arm action from low ¾ slot. FB 84-85 T87 with live tail, and a nasty 73-75 CH with tons of fade he can throw in any count. He’s working on a cutter which will only grab him more swing & miss. He has one of the prettiest swings in the class at the dish and times up good pitching with his simple, yet powerful forward move. Ridiculous loft from a smooth swing plane with minimal barrel angle.

One of the most projectable prospects in the state SS Matt Simay (Mill Creek; Uncommitted) comes in at No. 120. We have a good feeling he’s not done moving. The 6 foot 2, 155 pounder has rare bat speed for his size. The swing is special when he loads his hands & shoulders at the same pace of his stride. He gets very good extension through contact which allows him to catch offspeed pitches that may be short of the zone on his barrel. Matty Ice (his nickname) works well at SS, as he seems to save runs in high pressure situations with his above avg range and slick glove. Simay’s length helps him turn low probability plays into a higher rate of success. Accurate arm that will continue to improve. 

At No. 131 is an absolute electric factory in all facets of the game, MIF/CF Malachi Jeffries (Mountain View; Uncommitted). At 5 foot 8, 150 pounds, his game plays much bigger than his frame. He has one of the best swing paths in the area from both sides of the plate. Jeffries hips and shoulders work up the middle on a direct line with no wasted movement. It’s easy for the knob of his bat and barrel to follow that same path, which keeps him on pitches longer and reduce chance for swing & miss. Malachi is a plus runner with good potential to have the same impact as a defender in either MIF or OF.

Not too far behind at No. 139 is his teammate and good friend, high ceiling 3B/RHP Tyshon Patty (Mountain View; Uncommitted). The 6 foot 2 170 pounder has a large frame with present strength that should continue to develop over the next couple years. He sets up with a wide base, allowing him to stay down through his swing and really stretch his separation for extra rubberband effect. His noticeable bat speed will continue to take off as he fills out. Tyshon has just as much potential on the mound, where his naturally easy delivery stays square and promotes consistent strikes. His bowling ball FB is in the upper 80’s and he has a fearless mentality with it, challenging any RHH he sees with inside heaters. His 73-75 CB has nice shape with tight spin and late depth. We can’t wait to watch him play again. 

Taking a moonshot up our rankings to No. 148 based on his stuff and 15 K performance this week is LHP Armando Nunez (North Cobb Christian; Uncommitted). Is one of the most high energy arms in recent memory - sprinting on and off the field, throwing each pitch with every ounce of force he has, with an intense glare through a hitter’s soul. Nunez does a good job of creating a gradual incline slope with his shoulders as he strides to the plate, which helps him drive the ball downhill after landing. He fires sinking 87-88 T90 FB’s with tail at times from a deceptive yet explosive short circle arm action (¾ slot). His high leg kick allows him to ride his backside down the mound, keeping his upper half connected for landing. His mid 70s CB/SL hybrid has tight spin with a short 9 to 5 snap that tunnels off his FB perfectly. His 78-80 CH is a weapon against RHH. Don’t sleep on this lightning fast arm! 

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