Prep Baseball Report

Class of 2015 Showcase: Middle Infield Analysis

By Sean Duncan and Dan Duran

The Class of 2015 Showcase on July 17 at Oakton CC in Des Plaines unveiled several impressive middle infield prospects, many of whom were previously unknown to us.

Dylan Grady from Champaign Centennial HS graded out as the top position player at the entire event. Grady’s offensive abilities, coupled with his athleticism and arm strength should make him a coveted prospect in the 2015 class. Grady narrowly edged out Sandburg SS/RHP Alec Martinez, who also showcased an advanced offensive approach at the plate.

Here’s a look at the middle infielders at the Class of 2015 Showcase:

1. Dylan Grady, SS/RHP, Champaign Centennial HS, 2015
Athletically built 6-foot, 178-pound two-way player. Graded out as top infield prospect at event. Shows advanced plate approach and bat speed. Quiet, repeatable swing, aggressive approach, maintains excellent balance throughout, ball jumps with backspin and carry, registered event-best 88-mph exit speed. Defensively, shows arm strength (event-best 82 mph) and soft hands. Long arm action, accurate throws, takes solid routes to ball. May project as third baseman at next level; 7.16 runner. On the mound, commands three pitches for strikes. Athletic delivery, repeats well, high ¾ arm slot, short arm action. Fastball sat 81-82 mph; has advanced feel for changeup, 73-76 mph with some arm-side sink. 

2. Alec Martinez, SS/RHP, Sandburg HS, 2015
High-interest prospect in Illinois’ 2015 class. Athletically built 6-foot, 180-pound two-way player. Excellent overall hitting approach. Hits from open setup, extremely balanced and quiet throughout. Advanced bat speed through the zone, stays through the baseball, gets excellent extension after contact. Ball jumps off bat with backspin carry, gap power, may acquire more power in future. Defensively, has soft, reliable hands, arm shows carry across infield (77 mph), stays on-line with accuracy. May project as third baseman at next level. Ran a 7.31 60. On the mound, right-handed pitcher, fastball topped at 82 mph, sitting 80-81, with arm-side life. Also throws 67-68 mph curveball and 70-72 changeup. High-follow prospect in Illinois’ 2015 class.

3. Alex Mandeville, MIF, Sacred Heart-Griffin, 2015
5-foot-9, 140-pound middle-infielder showed some ability in all facets of the event. Displayed confidence at the plate and consistently found the barrel. Mandeville sets up in a slightly open, balanced stance with an abbreviated stride. He was short to the ball, recording an 80 mph exit speed off the tee. Defensively he fielded the position athletically with solid footwork and clean exchanges. His throws showed accuracy and some carry at 74 mph across the infield. Mandeville also ran a 7.15 60 at the showcase.

4. Alex DiFranco, MIF, Neuqua Valley, 2015
5-foot-11, 160-pound middle-infielder showed some solid ability on both sides of the ball. His feet work well and he makes clean exchanges – his arm plays at 81 mph with accuracy (one of the top infield velocities of the event). Offensively hits from a balanced setup with a smooth load flashing bat speed. DiFranco ran a 7.34 60 at the event.

5. Hunter Fiorito, MIF, Aurora Catholic, 2015
5-foot-10, 180-pound middle infielder showed some foot speed legging out a 7.19 60. Fiorito displayed some athleticism at the plate, setting up in a tall, balanced stance with a smooth load and short stride. Bat speed present, staying level through the zone showing some pop off the bat – 87 mph exit speed – with line-drive ability. Defensively threw 76 mph across the infield.

Best of the Rest (Listed Alphabetically)

Zach Baird, RHP/MIF/OF, South Elgin, 2015
Baird is a 5-foot-10, 155-pound two-way player. Showed some rhythm and athleticism throughout his delivery on the mound. Has loose arm action from a high ¾ slot. His fastball sat 80-81 mph, topping at 83 mph. His 12/6 curveball was at 62-65 mph with control. He also throws a 69-72 mph slider, and a 73-75 mph changeup with arm speed and slight sink. Baird ran a 7.25 60 at the event. Arm plays at 81 mph from the outfield and 77 mph across the infield. Offensively hits from an open, crouched setup using a short stride. He has a long bat path but maintains balance throughout his swing – recorded a 71 mph exit speed.

Alex Baker, INF, Jacobs HS, 2015
5-foot-5, 140-pound infielder. Hits from a crouched, wide setup, has aggressive plate approach, generates solid barrel whip through the zone despite no stride, maintains balance throughout. Defensively, was clocked at 71 mph across the infield and ran a 7.7 60.

Richard Barnum, MIF, Springfield, 2015
5-foot-5, 120-pound left-handed hitting middle infielder. Barnum displayed some athleticism defensively, throwing with short arm action from a high ¾ slot at 64 mph across the infield. Offensively hits from an open setup with a smooth load and short stride. Recorded a 60 mph exit velocity off the tee and ran a 7.76 60.

Khamaree Burt, OF/SS, Plainfield South HS, 2015
5-foot-6, 140-pound versatile athlete. Ran a 7.38 60, plays with energy and purpose to ball in outfield, short arm action, clocked at 79 mph. In the infield, fields ball with rhythm, feet work well, reliable hands, 75 mph across the infield. Offensively, has balanced, line-drive approach, level bat path, makes consistent hard contact.

Fischer Easton Durbala, MIF, Burlington (IA), 2015
6-foot-1, 175-pound middle infielder showed potential at the plate. Durbala hits from the left side setting up in a tall stance. Has a short stride and a level bat path through the zone, maintaining balance throughout the swing. He struck the ball 78 mph off the tee and could generate better pop with more separation. His throws across the infield were 68 mph and ran a 7.5 60 at the event.

Jack Fitzgerald, MIF, Oak Park-River Forest, 2015
6-foot, 160-pound middle-infielder displayed some ability on both sides of the ball. Fields the position cleanly defensively and makes throws with loose arm action at 68 mph across the infield. Offensively, the line-drive hitter showed a solid approach at the plate. His swing is short to the ball and consistently found the barrel, recording a 78 mph exit velocity off the tee. Fitzgerald ran a 7.62 60 at the event.

D’Vante Glenn, MIF, St. Rita, 2015
5-foot-7, 140-pound middle-infielder athletically ran a 6.87 60 at the event. Glenn displayed some line-drive capabilities at the plate – hitting from a tall, balanced stance, recording a 77 mph exit velocity. Defensively he showed quick footwork throwing 70 mph across the infield with some accuracy.

Alex Hillegonds, MIF, Washington, 2015
5-foot-10, 155-pound middle-infielder ran a 7.01 60 at the showcase. Hillegonds displayed athleticism defensively fielding with solid hands and a quick exchange, throwing 69 mph across the diamond with some accuracy. Offensively hits from a tall stance utilizing a toe tap trigger. He showed some bat speed and a short path to the ball, recording an exit velocity of 77 mph.

Patrick Kuczwara, MIF/C, Johnsburg, 2015
5-foot-10, 170-pound middle-infielder and catcher. Offensively hits from a slightly open stance with a short stride – the ball left his bat at 74 mph off the tee. Behind the plate, Kuczwara recorded 2.36-2.51 pop-times at 62 mph from the crouch. His throws across the infield were 66 mph and ran a 7.88 60.

Enrique Manzano, SS, Solorio, 2015
5-foot-10, 160-pound left-handed hitting shortstop. Fielded his position with some athleticism – threw 74 mph across the infield. Offensively swings on an uphill path, recording a 68 mph exit velocity off the tee. His 60 time was 7.35.

Erik Milaicki, RHP/SS, LaSalle-Peru, 2015
Left-handed hitting 6-foot, 165-pound two-way player. On the mound, Milaicki showed command of his fastball, thrown at 74-76 mph with slight run, topping at 78 mph. His 11/5 curveball has early break ranging 61-65 mph. Slows his arm on his changeup but had control at 68-70 mph with some sink. Milaicki ran a 7.44 60 at the showcase and defensively threw 72 mph across the infield. Sets up in an open stance at the plate using a short stride, maintaining balance throughout the swing.

Justin Newton, MIF, Hillcrest, 2015
5-foot-6, 125-pound middle-infielder displayed athletic footwork defensively and flashed soft hands. His throws were 69 mph across the infield. Offensively Newton showed bat speed and whip through the zone. His level path generates consistent line-drives – recorded a 69 mph exit velocity. He also ran a 7.26 60 at the event and threw 76 mph from the outfield.

Trent Porter, MIF, Ottawa HS, 2015
Solidly built 5-foot-8, 180-pound infielder. Has aggressive offensive approach. Hits from slightly open, crouched position, aggressive lower half, maintains excellent balance through contact, generates bat speed, gets excellent extension after contact. Has level bat path, creates natural lift in swing. Ran a 7.64 60. Defensively, shows reliable hands, clean exchange. May project more as third base at next level. Was clocked at 71 mph across the diamond.

Grant Rademacher, MIF, Munster (IN), 2015
Left-handed hitting middle-infielder with a lanky build at 6-foot-1, 145 pounds. Line-drive hitter at the plate hits from a balanced setup at the plate  – recorded a 76 mph exit velocity. His arm action from the infield was long and over the top at 68 mph across the diamond.

Jaron Robinson, SS, Mendota, 2015
Lanky, switch-hitting 5-foot-10, 150-pound shortstop showed some athleticism fielding his position. Robinson displayed soft hands and active footwork gaining ground towards his target. He has long, loose, athletic arm action playing at 79 mph across the infield with some accuracy. Showed line-drive ability at the plate, taking hard hacks with some whip in his barrel – recorded a 75 mph exit velocity off the tee. Robinson ran a 7.39 60 at the showcase.

Sam Warady, MIF, Lake Zurich, 2015
5-foot-11, 155-pound right-handed hitting and throwing middle-infielder. Hits from a balanced setup using a short stride, maintaining balance throughout the swing – recorded a 77 mph exit velocity off the tee. He threw 68 mph across the infield and ran a 7.47 60 at the showcase.

Related Class of 2015 Showcase Content

Complete Catchers Analysis

Complete Pitcher Analysis

CLICK HERE for complete event statistics

You Show We Tell Event Slide