Class of 2013 Showcase results: Top 25 overall prospects

By Matt Yarber and Sean Duncan

The Prep Baseball Report Class of 2013 Showcase on Oct. 23 featured an impressive group of junior prospects from Illinois and Wisconsin. Approximately 80 prospects convened at the Max-McCook Athletic & Exposition Center in McCook, IL to show what they can do.

There were many players who saw their stock climb at the event. Kevin Smith, a strong-bodied shortstop from St. Laurence HS, earned top honors at the event, while Oak Lawn RHP Robert Kametas established himself as one of the premier right-handers in the state.

A look at the top 25 prospects at the event:

1. Kevin Smith, SS, St. Laurence HS
Smith proved to be one of the premier prospects in the Class of 2013. Already committed to Creighton University, Smith’s physical 6-foot-3, 190-pound frame projects well at the next level.  Smith showed one of the strongest arms from the infield, posting a velocity of 84 mph that had carry to it.  His fluid footwork and reliable hands make him a top-level infield prospect.  Offensively, Smith uses his strong body and natural athleticism to create excellent barrel whip through the zone while squaring up the baseball.  He demonstrated power in his swing with an aggressive lower half and a balanced swing. The ball jumps off his bat with backspin carry. Smith also ran a 7.24 60.

2. Robert Kametas, RHP, Oak Lawn HS
Unknown heading into the event, Kametas certainly made a big name for himself, and in the process established himself as one of the top right-handed prospects in the Class of 2013. The 6-foot, 190-pound Kametas has a strong lower half, which he utilized well during his bullpen session. Coming from a high ¾ arm slot, Kametas’ fastball sat in the 86-87 mph range with heavy, late life.  He showed good feel for his off-speed pitches as well, with a curveball that had an 11/5 shape with late action in the 67-72 mph range, and a changeup in the 72-73 mph with sink and down in the zone.

3. Jack Granath, RHP, Rockton Honoegah HS
At 6-foot-5, 170 pounds, Granath has an extremely projectable body type, one that will continue to develop as he physically develops. Granath has extremely long legs and arms, and demonstrated athleticism, rhythm and fluidity on the mound. The right-hander operates from a high ¾ arm slot and has a quick, loose arm action.  He showcased a fastball that topped out at 84 mph that was thrown with little effort.  His curveball showed some depth in the 68-70 mph range, and changeup in the 73-74 mph range that displayed sink when down in the zone.

4. Cal Placher, RHP, Joliet Catholic HS
Placher features an athletic and wiry 6-foot, 160-pound frame, one that should fill out nicely as he physically develops. The loose right-hander impressed with his lively fastball, which topped at 85 mph, and sat in 83-84 range with late arm-side action. He comes from a high ¾ arm slot and displayed rhythm and tempo throughout his mechanics. His arm works fast and he showed excellent hand acceleration. His secondary pitches included a sharp slider with two-plane break, in the 69-72 range, that has a chance to be a swing-and-miss pitch. He also showed feel for a changeup that demonstrated some arm-side sink, and a 62-65 mph curveball.

5. Jake Ring, OF, Grant HS
Ring is an athletic left-handed hitter who showed natural outfield instincts and an all-around aptitude for the game. The 5-foot-11, 160-pound Ring exhibited a strong arm (84 mph) that had carry and was on target. He moves with fluidity and purpose to the ball, and his natural instincts and hands further separated him from the pack.  Ring, who ran a 7.01 60, has a quick and compact swing from the left-side. He demonstrated good balance and barrel whip through the zone as he sprayed line drives to all fields. 

6. Peter Doughty, OF, York HS
Doughty features one of the most natural, fluid left-handed swings in the Class of 2013, and proved it at the event by putting on the best round of BP of the day.  With his athletic 6-foot-1, 170-pound frame, Doughty demonstrated a balanced setup at the plate.  His short stride and economical path to the ball, coupled with his excellent barrel whip and swing looseness, resulted in gap-to-gap power to both alleys.   In the outfield, Doughty exhibited solid footwork and arm strength (82 mph) as he fired strikes to the target.  

7. Derek Bangert, C/3B, Lockport HS
With his 6-foot-3, 225-pound frame and extraordinarily strong lower half, Bangert is a physically advanced catcher who showcased big power potential at the plate.  With his strength and balance throughout his swing, the ball jumps off his bat with backspin carry. He has an easy swing that features a short stride and economical path to the ball.  Defensively, Bangert can play behind the plate or a corner infield position.  He demonstrated a strong, accurate arm that posted velocities of 78 mph from behind the dish and 85 mph from third base. 

8. Matt Miller, RHP/SS, Aurora Central HS
Miller was the best two-way prospect at the event, as he showed extremely well both at shortstop and on the mound. Standing at 5-foot-10, 160-pounds, Miller displayed one of the strongest arms across the diamond, posting a velocity of 84 mph.  Aside from his arm strength, he showed polished defensive actions, as he took precise routes, demonstrated quick, soft hands and played through the ball well. Offensively, he hits with an open setup and showed good rhythm and swing looseness. On the mound, Miller operates from a high ¾ slot. He showed good hand acceleration and fluid mechanics throughout while showing the ability to command four pitches for strikes. His arm works with little effort; his fastball sat in the 82-83 mph range. His 70-72 mph curveball demonstrated two-plane break, and he also showed feel for a changeup and slider. 

9. Alexander Cain, SS/RHP, Oregon HS
An athletically built 6-foot-3, 185-pound two-way player, Cain is an extremely projectable talent.  He showcased his strong arm at the event by throwing 84 mph from across the diamond. Cain, who ran a 7.33 60, showed athletic feet and played through the ball well, particularly on the move. Offensively, Cain flashed some power potential at the plate. On the mound, Cain comes from a high ¾ arm slot and features a quick and free arm action.  His fastball topped at 83 mph, and his 75-77 mph slider demonstrated some late, hard bite. He also threw a curveball in the 70-73 mph range, a changeup in 73-77 mph range.

10. Carson Cheesman, LHP/OF, Galesburg HS
Cheesman is one of the more intriguing left-handed prospects in the Class of 2013.  The lanky 6-foot, 165-pounder commanded the strike zone with four pitches, all with movement.  His 74-76 mph changeup has the potential to be a legitimate out-pitch, as it demonstrated late arm side sink with deception.  Cheesman’s slider, which was in the 69-70 mph range, also impressed, as it had a sweeping two-plane break.  Cheesman’s fastball topped at 79 mph, but with his projectable frame and arm speed, he should see a velocity spike in the coming years.  Cheesman also showed feel for a curveball in the 65-67 mph range.  

11. Chance Rappe, SS, Wheaton-Warrenville South HS
Rappe is a 6-foot-2, 160-pound left-handed hitting shortstop who impressed by running a 6.9 60. Rappe has long legs and a lanky body type, one that should fill out nicely as he physically develops. Defensively, Rappe showed soft, reliable hands and solid arm strength (80 mph) across the infield.  Offensively, Rappe demonstrated an easy, loose swing with barrel whip through the zone from the left side. As Rappe fills into his body, he has the potential to become one of the better middle infield prospects in the Class of 2013.

12. Jake Cousins, RHP/OF, Wheaton Academy HS
With long legs and arms, the 6-foot-2, 155-pound Cousins has an athletic, lanky build that projects well at the next level.  On the mound, Cousins showed a quick, loose arm coming from an over-the top slot.  He showed feel for all three of his pitches. His fastball topped at 84 mph, and it demonstrated some late sinking action. His off-speed pitches included a curveball that had 11/5 shape in the 65-67 mph range, a changeup which flashed arm-side sink in the 68-71 mph range.  Defensively, Cousins had good carry and life on his throws (84 mph) from the outfield.  He moved athletically to the ball and got on top of his throws well. At the plate, Cousins exhibited a balanced, loose swing.

13. Ryne Blanton, 3B/RHP, Richmond Burton HS
Blanton is a strong, athletically built two-way player who has a projectable build for the next level.  With his 6-foot-1, 185-pound frame, Blanton features a strong arm that was clocked at 82 mph from third base.  Additionally, he showed concise lateral footwork and soft hands at third base. Blanton, who ran a 7.38 60, demonstrated some power potential at the plate.  On the mound, Blanton has a high ¾ slot and was sitting at 80-81 mph with his fastball.  He also showed feel for his changeup, which he threw for strikes at a similar arm speed.

14. Jake Lackovic, OF, Huntley HS
Lackovic is an athletically built 6-foot-4, 190-pound outfielder who ran a 6.9 60. In addition to his athleticism and size, Lackovic also impressed with his arm strength from the outfield (87 mph). Offensively, Lackovic features a balanced setup and used his aggressive lower half to generate bat speed through the zone.

15. Matthew Testa, LHP, Joliet Catholic Academy HS
Testa is a 5-foot-11, 170-pound left-hander who showed the ability to throw four pitches. His fastball had late life in the 80-81 mph range.  Furthermore, Testa demonstrated good feel for his 73-75 changeup that had arm side sink down in the zone.  He also flashed two different breaking balls: a slider and curveball, both at similar speeds.

16. Bill Hayes, C, Lemont HS
Hayes was the most polished catching prospect at the event, as he showed well in all facets of the game.  Defensively, the 5-foot-11, 165-pound Hayes displayed soft hands and athletic feet behind the plate while receiving bullpens. He also showed carry on his throws (78 mph) while delivering consistent pop times on the bag, ranging between 2.05, 2.13, and 2.15. Offensively, he demonstrated a balanced, level swing with excellent barrel whip through the zone. He consistently squared up the ball while driving the ball to all fields.

17. Brendan Miller, RHP, Plainfield North HS
Miller is an extremely projectable 6-foot-3, 175-pound right-hander who features long legs and arms. With his wiry body type and quick arm, Miller should see a significant velocity spike with his 79-81 mph fastball. Miller exhibited good rhythm and a fluid arm coming from a high ¾ arm slot.  He showed feel for three pitches; his curveball has the potential to be a plus pitch, as it demonstrated sharp, two-plane break in the 66-69 range. He also threw his changeup, which showed some arm-side sink, for strikes.

18. Alec Skender, MIF, Metamora HS
The 6-foot, 165-pound Skender showed well in all facets of the game.  Skender demonstrated soft hands, quick feet and a clean exchange in the middle infield.  The athletically built infielder continued to impress by running a 6.98 60.  Offensively, Skender has a wide setup, and he used his active lower half to create barrel whip through the zone. He maintained balance throughout his swing as he sprayed line drives to all fields.

19. Steven Chamberlain, RHP/MIF, Guilford HS
Chamberlain is a projectable 6-foot-2, 170-pound two-way player who showed well both as a position player and on the mound. As a position player, he displayed natural instincts in the field and showed a velocity of 81 mph from the outfield and 72 mph from across the diamond.  Offensively, Chamberlain features a quick left-handed swing with good extension through the zone.  He displayed excellent barrel whip through the zone and created backspin carry when he squared the ball up.  On the mound, Chamberlain has a high ¾ arm slot and showed good hand acceleration.  His fastball sat at 78-80 mph and featured some downward sink.  His changeup had some downward action, and he also threw a curveball and slider.

20. Alex Milne, LHP, Oswego HS
Milne is a wide-bodied 6-foot-3, 240-pound left-handed pitcher who filled up the zone with three pitches. Milne comes from a high ¾ slot and features a fluid backside arm action. His fastball topped at 83 mph, sitting mostly at 82. He also showed a late sweeping curveball in the 65-67 mph range and a 71-74 mph changeup.

21. Matt Fallon, OF, Loyola Academy HS
The 5-foot-11, 158-pound Fallon is an athletically built outfielder who moved well at his position.  With his long legs, Fallon moves athletically and showed good carry on his throws (81 mph). Offensively, Fallon showed a compact swing with rhythm and swing looseness. With his whippy hands and economical path to the ball, Fallon uses the whole field. He also ran a 7.1 60.

22. Trevor Machek, LHP, Minooka HS
Machek is a 6-foot-2, 180-pound left-handed pitcher who showed feel for all three of his pitches.  He operates from a lower ¾ arm slot.  Machek’s fastball topped at 78 mph with some arm-side run. He also showed two off-speed pitches, a sweeping curveball that sat in the 62-63 mph range and a sinking changeup in the 67-69 mph range.

23. Tyler Gorski, 3B, Grant HS
Gorski is a 6-foot, 220-pound third baseman who showcased big right-handed power potential.  With his size and lower-half explosion, the ball really jumps off his bat with excellent carry and loft.  With his smooth load and short stride, his swing was easy. Defensively, Gorski showed reliable hands at third base and  threw 76 mph from across the diamond.

24. Josh Reid, SS, Lincoln-Way North HS
Reid posted the best 60 time of the event when he ran a 6.81.  His 6-foot, 170-pound athlete also showed well in the infield, where he demonstrated soft hands and quick feet.  Offensively, Reid features an athletic setup and short stride to the ball. 

25. Will Farmer, SS/RHP, Mundelein HS
Farmer is a 5-foot-11, 160-pound two-way player who showed well in all aspects of the game. At the plate, Farmer showed an advanced plate approach; he has an easy, simple swing with good rhythm and balance throughout.  With a short stride and economical approach to the ball, Farmer made consistent hard contact.  Defensively, Farmer showed good hands and range while delivering consistent throws across the infield (76 mph). Farmer also ran a 7.29 60. On the mound, Farmer has an over the top slot with a fastball in the 79-81 mph range.  His curveball showed flashes of two-plane break.

25. Jeffery Reynolds, OF, De La Salle HS
Reynolds is a 5-foot-10, 155-pound athlete who had one of the strongest arms from the outfield, posting a velocity of 85 mph.  He moves aggressively to the ball, and his throws had excellent carry and ride. Offensively, Reynolds features a slightly open setup with a smooth load and short stride to the ball. He showed the ability to make consistent hard contact while spraying line drives to all fields. He also ran a 7.33 60.