Prep Baseball Report

Georgia 2024 Rankings: Post Fall Update

Phil Kerber & Justin Goetz
PBR Georgia Staff

As the fall winds down and players prep for the upcoming spring, we did a light reshuffling of the Georgia Class of 2024 rankings. The list remains at 250 prospects. As the build-up for the high school season is in full swing, we highlight some fresh faces in the rankings as well as the top uncommitted prospects by position.

As always, the evaluation process is a fluid and ongoing process with multiple viewings in order to get the best feel for players abilities. It’s important to note that as players continue their development some show marked improvement at a much more rapid pace. That doesn’t indicate that other players got worse or went backwards, it’s just how player development works. As the year unfolds, players make improvements and new prospects pop up on the radar expanding the PBR rankings universe. In addition to the evaluations of players, our scouts, both those in Georgia and nationally, have also had multiple discussions with each other to review our individual lists and then make adjustments based on what we've each seen. 

The Top-10

1 Michael Mullinax GA North Cobb Christian 2024 OF Georgia
2 Bryce Clavon GA Kell 2024 SS/OF
3 Arnold Abernathy GA North Cobb 2024 SS Tennessee
4 Erik Parker GA North Gwinnett 2024 SS South Carolina
5 Duke Stone GA Jeff Davis 2024 RHP Georgia
6 Terrence Kiel GA Pace Academy 2024 OF Texas A&M
7 Rustan Rigdon GA Metter 2024 SS Vanderbilt 
8 BJ Gibson GA Wilcox County 2024 OF Tennessee 
9 Ford Thompson GA Parkview 2024 LHP Georgia
10 Conrad Cason GA Greater Atlanta Christian 2024 RHP/SS Mississippi State 

Full Top-250


Alex Hernandez RHP / Forsyth Central , GA / 2024

Georgia Tech Commit. 6 foot 2, 190 pounds. What's the most impressive thing about this prototype RHS? Well, he can really mash and has been recruited to the Wreck Havoc crew as a legit two way! We haven’t had an extended look on that bat yet, but what he does on the bump lands him in the top 30. This is one of the most low effort operators in the class, and he’s quickly rising in the eyes of our PBR evaluators. His delivery is extremely smooth and relaxed, creating big velocity for his age without much stress. He’s very young looking for his age and has a well built lower half, but much more strength to gain. When we scouted him the first thing that came to mind was, man there’s a lot more in the tank here. Hernandez attacks hitters with his high spin (2400+) 87-89 T90 FB that jumps to the plate with carry up in the zone, and bore on RHH. It plays very well up in the upper quadrant and makes his hammer CB in the 76-78 range that much more devastating. The pitch is nearly a two plane hammer already, as he consistently showed it was an A/AVG pitch in the PBR Cup. It will undoubtedly be a plus pitch in the future. This thing looks like a strike until halfway to the plate, absolutely falling off the planet for consistent K’s. It’s the unquestioned separator for Hernandez, and has the chance to become unrivaled in the southeast for his class with another velo jump. He also used an 83 mph CH pretty consistently in game that did its job with fade. He does drop his slot on the pitch but has figured out how to produce consistent action on the pitch. If he can get that to match slot with his other two pitches, it will vault him to another new height in his game. This is a future weekend starter/pro prospect with one of the best breaking balls in the class.

Jackson Barberi RHP / Brookwood, GA / 2024

Uncommitted. 6 foot 2, 160 pounds. 2022 has without a doubt been the year of Barberi. He’s taken the nation by storm, with his FB making 8-10 mph jump in velocity the last calendar year! It’s even jumped since we last saw him at the end of summer, from 86-88 (video below) to 88-90 at the end of fall. There are endless eye opening positives about Jackson’s game, but let's start with the fact that he’ll be 17 years old when the 2024 MLB Draft arrives. Let's follow that with an opinion that's not as bold as you’d think, the Brookwood Bronco has the fastest arm speed in the state for 2024. The ease of operation, sequence and flow of his delivery are eye opening. This is an elite mover with a perfect build up of pace and momentum in the delivery. After seeing one pitch, you immediately see how athletic this dude is. He flows like water through the up+down+out phases, wasting no energy before landing or any extra movement to impact his direction. His arm action is incredibly loose & quick, with a perfectly efficient full circle (mid depth) arm action from a unique L3/4 slot. Not only is the arm speed elite, so is the deceptiveness. He hides the ball extremely well naturally, due to his arm action being very well connected with his largest muscles on the backside. The timing he shows in hip/shoulder separation is textbook, building healthy rubberband-like tension gradually into pure jet fuel post landing. There are few deliveries in the class or nation that possess every single quality you’d find in a top of the rotation MLB starter with nothing to fix mechanically, and Barberi is one of those few. We could write a book on Barberi’s delivery, but his pure stuff is just as exciting. His 88-90 FB has ridiculous IBV/HZB numbers and hovers in at 2600 rpm. Its the definition of bore arm side and he’s able to produce comeback horizontal life on the glove side edge, which is such a strength vs hitters on either side of the plate. Vs RHH, he can freeze them on the outer edge with what starts out as a ball after buzzing them in on the hands. This adds a different dimension to his FB and plays up both secondary offerings. He can also freeze LHH in after getting them leaning over the plate with his disgusting CH. The 2500 rpm SL is a power sweeper of the same quality in the 74-77 range, a pure nightmare for hitters. It’s one of the sharpest pitches in the class with late depth and plays up due to unreal angle. It's more of the same with his 78-80 CH, his other secondary pitch with an endless ceiling. The fade and depth combo is very similar to the FB low in the zone and generates easy swing and miss. Jackson is a future front end starter who has 3 pitches with plus potential. With his athletic delivery and arm action, future A/AVG FB command & average or better command of his offspeed pitches is on the way.

Brantley Upshaw RHP / Toombs County, GA / 2024

Georgia State Commit. 6 foot 8, 240 pounds. This Georgia State commit is one of the lesser known players we feel strongest about in the upcoming classes. Yes, he’s one of the largest, most projectable arms we’ve ever scouted. But that's only part of what is going to make him an elite prospect in the future. His athleticism and pitchability at such a tremendous size are true separators. It’s been proven over time that the taller a pitcher is, the harder it becomes to repeat a timed up delivery. They typically have longer arm actions, less balance, and take longer for things to click. There are always exceptions, and Upshaw is that guy. His delivery is incredibly compact and well sequenced, as it’s shocking how a teenager the size of an ACC power forward can move so well through his delivery with balance. Yep you guessed it, he also plays basketball. Brantley has just as much potential on the court, but baseball is his favorite sport. He owns the boards, blocks everything in sight, and dunks with ease. It’s the same ease of operation he shows on the mound, creating unreal explosiveness with almost no effort. His arm action is a clean, efficient short circle that drops loosely out of the glove. This helps gravity create the momentum for him as he works into throwing position. Loose muscles are quick muscles, and a big part of why Upshaw has both arm speed and arm strength. Check out our article  “The Next Big Thing” for a deeper analysis on his delivery and how it projects on future velocity. His heavy running FB sits in the 87-88 range, regularly touching 89 T90. The life is quite electric already, and our staff believes it's his highest potential pitch of four offerings. We feel the FB will be a consistent mid 90’s pitch and a real chance to reach the upper 90’s in the future and would not be surprised to see triple digits. No need to predict when, just that it’s on the way. His 79-80 SL might be his 3rd-4th most used pitch, but has plus potential and gets a large amount of swing & miss. It tunnels extremely well on the steep FB plane, with vicious downward tilt and late bite. He uses it currently for K’s. Upshaw has one of the better SPL’s in the class at 80-82. The pitch has a serious tumble with very  low spin near 900 rpm and has A/AVG potential. These two vertical secondary pitches make it very tough to sit on his FB, and when the next velo jump comes the FB will be unhittable. But that's not all, the Toombs County Terror also has a sweeping CB in the 76-78 range that he throws for strikes and has tons of potential. It’s the icing on the cake, preventing hitters from just tracking vertically on his offspeed pitches. Whatever you do, just keep a close eye on Brantley Upshaw when he toes that bump.

Noah Thigpen RHP / Lowndes, GA / 2024

Troy Commit. 6 foot 2, 180 pounds. Few arms in the state have made as large a jump as this newly committed Troy Trojan. He went from low mid 80’s to touching 90 in 8 months time! His prototype frame, athleticism, and projection, make another jump seem imminent. Thigpen has one of the most fluid, rare deliveries in the state regardless of class. Everything happens in perfect sequence, unreal lower half mechanics & hip/shoulder separation you only see in elite college/pro guys. His rhythm & tempo are perfect, as well as his actions through the up+down+out phases. Sequence is the biggest reason he’s been a 75% strikes guy at LP. The arm action is incredibly clean with a loose mid depth arm swing that stays connected with his largest muscles on the backside, arm is never in a bad position. His FB is 88-89 T91 23-2400 with ride+run (elite IVB numbers), the SLV at 76-78 has sweep+late depth for strikes, and the 80-81 CH is a fader w/ big potential. With the athleticism, projection, and delivery being his separators, you get a feeling Thigpen could be in an entirely different stratosphere a year from now.

Preston Bonn C / Brookwood, GA / 2024

Kennesaw State Commit. 6 foot, 180 pounds. It’s quite rare to find a backstop with this type of athleticism, as those players usually are found playing SS/CF. The extremely athletic actions he shows in all facets of the game will only become more explosive as he fills into his frame. Bonn simply makes the game look easy. Offensively, he shows great rhythm and fluidity in the swing, and it starts in the slow flow of the hips. His hands stay active from the moment he sets up, but the most important part is that they stay in one compact area. This allows him to feel the timing and stretch of separation and prevents his hands from stagnating at any point in the forward move. The relaxed upper half and looseness in his elbows allow the hands to work close to the body throughout the swing, creating a dynamic path that can work in tight space or to the opposite field with ease. His good separation timing brings exceptional torque at landing. The hip pace, momentum gaining stride, and front hip clearance before landing are highly impressive actions. They are big reason for why he shows gap to gap power and is able to hit velocity with the best of them well before physically filling out his frame. Although an average-ish runner in terms of 60 time, his run tool plays up in the game with lengthy strides and easy explosiveness. Defensively is where he separates himself even more, with some of the best catch and throw in the class. He regularly turns in 1.95 to 2.00 pop times due to advanced footwork, a quick transfer, and a textbook arm action for a backstop. His athleticism and lateral agility shows in blocking and he’s as smooth as they come as a receiver. Strength is the only thing needed for another big jump in tools for Bonn.


Top Uncommitted

10 Davis Wright GA Walton 2024 C
11 Jayden White GA Savannah Christian Prep 2024 C
13 Caleb Miele GA Cherokee Bluff 2024 C
14 Evan Doss GA East Coweta 2024 C
15 Landon Cole GA Cartersville 2024 C
First Baseman
2 Cooper Johnson GA Mountain View 2024 1B/LHP  
5 Stephen Taylor GA Stephenson 2024 1B
6 Kole Hammond GA Pike County 2024 1B   
7 Jack Ryan GA Starr's Mill 2024 1B   
8 Aidan Guilbeau GA Allatoona 2024 1B   
Middle Infielders
1 Bryce Clavon GA Kell 2024 SS  
12 Jaylen Jones GA Loganville 2024 SS  
13 Craig Kalkbrenner GA Harrison 2024 SS  
14 Michael Zito GA Blessed Trinity 2024 SS  
15 Dimitri Angelakos GA Etowah 2024 SS  
Third Baseman
11 Colin Hedges GA Apalachee 2024 3B  
12 Bryce Hubbard GA Callaway 2024 3B  
13 Carson Rech GA Cambridge 2024 3B  
14 Trent Tankersly GA Glynn Academy 2024 3B
15 Ayden Ray GA Woodland 2024 3B  
8 Zach Jackson GA Holy Innocents 2024 OF
9 Noah Jordi GA Homeschool 2024 OF
12 Marquis Mitchell GA Georgia Premier Academy 2024 OF
14 DeShaun Strane GA Rockdale County 2024 OF  
16 Zaelyn Smith GA Coffee 2024 OF  
Right-Handed Pitchers
9 Jackson Barberi GA Brookwood 2024 RHP
10 Fisher Cantrell GA St. Anne-Pacelli 2024 RHP
13 Jayden Nunez GA Collins Hill 2024 RHP
15 Montrell Christian Jr. GA Forest Park 2024 RHP   
17 Brooks Willis GA Houston County 2024 RHP
Left-Handed Pitchers
4 Adam McKelvey GA Roswell 2024 LHP  
6 Jared Webb GA Lassiter 2024 LHP  
7 Zac Miller GA Hillgrove 2024 LHP  
9 Kevin Maurer GA Woodstock 2024 LHP  
10 Carson Small GA Houston County 2024 LHP  

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