Notes from Cartersville and Flowery Branch


By Kyle Colletta
Georgia Staff

An exciting two games between Cartersville and Flowery Branch saw Cartersville move on in the 4A playoffs, but Flowery Branch has a bright future with a slew of young talent. Here are some of the top standouts during the Thursday night doubleheader.

Cartersville

Josh Davis, MIF, 2020, Cartersville
5-foot-11, 180 pounds, strong build. Davis has emerged as one of the top uncommitted bats in state, largely due to his ability to square up balls to all fields. Has a quiet set-up and smooth rhythm throughout. Strong, aggressive swing that produces hard contact. Stays on top of the ball well. In the field, sure-handed and displays good fundamentals; fields the ball well out in front. Athletic feet and comfortable throwing from all angles, especially on double play turns at 2B.

Jordan Wilkie, SS, 2020, Cartersville
Lipscomb recruit. 6-foot-2, 185 pounds; long limbs that will still add strength. Strong lower-half. Short, quick load at the plate. Went 3-5 with 2 RBI in the doubleheader. All three hits were hard line drives. Did a good job hitting FB left over the plate. Has good, loose actions in the field, plays well with glove-hand, has plus awareness in the field and works well around the bag.

Mason Barnett, RHP, 2019, Cartersville
Auburn recruit. 6-foot-1, 195 pounds; thick lower-half. Quick start to windup, has controlled balance point, repeats delivery. Full arm motion, uses legs to generate velocity. Heavy FB sitting 87-91 the whole game. Topped at 92. Used two shapes of breaking balls, both distinctly different. 12/6 CB at 69-73; used predominantly in first three innings. Looked more to wipe out SL later on; 79-80mph. Have seen it up to 84. Has good feel for CH at 78-81; late sink, low in the zone. Got the win in game one going 6.2 IP, 0 R, 11 K, 1 H. Competitive mentality on the bump.

Preston Welchel, CF, 2019, Cartersville
South Alabama recruit, 5-foot-11, 170 pounds; athletic build. Has been top Cartersville hitter all season. Only picked up one hit, but the LHH hit balls hard all night. Open stance, calm approach. Rests bat on shoulder and gets to slot right in time. Strong wrists that allows to drive the ball even when he gets out in front. Active lower half at the plate. Solid defender, covers ground.

Logan Martin, RHP, 2019, Cartersville
Sewanee recruit. 6-foot-2, 180 pounds. Sinks down with backside. Hip flex and reaches out with front leg on delivery; up and out. Spins off towards 1B. One piece arm motion. Works from a ¾ slot, which allows 83-85mph FB to have sink in the bottom of the zone. Arm slot also works well with CH at 75-77. Same arm speed, heavy sink armside. 10/4 SL threw mostly to RHH at 68-70.

Kolby Adams, OF, 2019, Cartersville
Wiry framed, quick twitch. Open stance, fast load. Short, level swing. Knocked in the go-ahead run in game one on an RBI single through the left-side. Sure handed in the outfield and takes charge on fly balls.

 

Flowery Branch

Andrew Armstrong, LHP, 2020, Flowery Branch
Florida State commit. 6-foot-2, 150 pound LHP. Aggressive delivery and finish. Short, quick arm action from a low ¾ slot. Arm works loose. Has heavy run arm side. FB sat 83-87, T88. CB at 69-71 with good 2/7 action. Looked to backdoor RHH with it. CH had good, deceptive sink at 75mph. Kept the same arm action/speed on all pitches. Had no room for error, but kept a talented Canes lineup at bay most of the game. Went 6 IP, 2 R, 9 K, 2 H in the first game.

Zander Sechrist, LHP, 2020, Flowery Branch
Tennessee commit. 6-foot-2, 160 pounds. Fast pace delivery and balance point. Mixed up timing with quick-pitch windup and traditional windup. Full arm motion, H3/4 slot. FB sat 80-84 in his 5 innings of work. Ran back in on the plate on occasion. CB was 67-68, sharp and low in the zone when on time. CH was 76-77 with slight change in arm speed. Induced weak contact and had 5 K in 5 IP.

Kaleb Freeman, INF/C, 2021, Flowery Branch
5-foot-11, 170 pounds. Solid, proportional frame. Played a solid 3B in game one. Made a great diving play coming in on a bunt. Showed advanced hands and accurate throws. Also caught a solid game in game two, but projects more as an INF. Has gap-to-gap approach that should develop into more power as he ages. Simple, level swing, has active lower-half on swing.

JB Bell, MIF, 2021, Flowery Branch
5-foot-10, 160 pounds. Athletic player. Shows good instincts at 2B, ranging up the middle on multiple plays. Showed the ability to make the great play. Quick hands on ground balls. At the plate, has fast hands. Good plate presence. Bottom-half sinks a bit, and back-foot kicks out on swing. Solid all-around player.

Connor Larson, SS, 2021, Flowery Branch
Solid, compact build. Strong forearms. Displays very advanced all around defensive actions at SS. Uses feet well and goes and gets it. Showed athleticism on spin play up the middle. Accurate throws across the IF. At the plate, starts with low hands, gets up to hitting position well. Line drive swing, hits on soft front-side. Backside comes through to generate good whip.

Jake Beaver, OF, 2022, Flowery Branch
5-foot-11, 165 pounds. Advanced player for his age. Stands tall at the plate, works from open stance. Has good approach, shooting middle-out pitches the other way. Simple take-back, toe-tap that he stays back well on. Head stays down on contact; head gets ahead a bit. Battled well with two strikes. Good runner.

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