Chicagoland Open: Catching Analysis

By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor – Wisconsin/Illinois

In recent years the Chicagoland Open has always unveiled a standout performance, typically from a player who is attending a PBR event for the first time. This year the prospect that stood out and should put himself atop the recruiting landscape was C Jordon Rogers (Simeon, 2018). Rogers is a plus athlete for his age and position which could rival comparisons to 2015 Whitney Young graduate David Craan (University of Illinois). Rogers athleticism stood out behind the dish and was one of the top overall prospects at the event. Currently ranked No. 6 in Illinois, look for Rogers to be a staple of the top of the 2018 class.

Catching Prospects

(Listed Alphabetically)

Jake Fiorito, C, Woodstock North, 2016
5-foot-11, 160-pound catcher, frame carried lean strength. Big arm strength out of the crouch (80 mph) ball carried well from a short over the top slot, lacked accuracy, consistently high. Posted pop times at 2.18-2.36, can shorten exchange. Right-handed hitter, balanced stance, short stride, arm bar load, can get more from lower half. Showed bat speed, long path on uppercut plane, pull side approach flashed occasional pop, looks to lift the baseball. 83 mph exit velocity from the tee. Ran a 7.43 laser timed 60 yard dash.

Sam Mennella, C, Wheaton Academy, 2018
5-foot-8, 135-pound catcher, average young frame. Above average runner for a catcher at his age, 7.35 laser timed 60. Right-handed hitter, balanced setup, loads back elbow up, shot stride. Can get more out of lower half, path works around the baseball some length, 69 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively posted pop times at 2.37-2.55, arm played at 67 mph out of the crouch, long arm action.

Jordon Rogers, C, Simeon, 2018
Lean athletic shape, projectable at his age, 5-foot-10, 170-pound right-handed hitting catcher. Looks to be one of the early top catching prospects in the state, currently ranked No. 6 in Illinois, lived up to the billing. Plus athlete for his age at his position, ran a 6.89 laser timed 60 and a 4.33 out of the box in BP. Plus defensive skill set for his age. Arm carries well, stays on  line and accurate at 75 mph out of the crouch, short over the top arm action. Hands are soft, handled bullpens with ease. Feet and hands work together out of the chute, quick efficient exchange. Pop time ranged from 2.11-2.18. Offensively hit from the right side, balanced stance, short stride, smooth loading action, athletic pre-pitch. Good balance, hands are quick to the baseball, simple attack of the baseball, at times ball jumped off his bat. 83 mph exit velocity from the tee. High follow 2018 prospect in the PBR coverage area.

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