Class of 2019 Showcase: Catching Analysis



By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor - Illinois/Wisconsin

The Class of 2019 Showcase brought some talented prospects to the forefront, in fact two attendees from this event made the PBR Future Games roster shortly after. One of which, Joseph Miller was the top catching prospect from the 2019 Showcase. Miller is a highly athletic and versatile prospect who bring multiple skill sets to the field that can play almost anywhere on the diamond. Here’s a look at the top catching prospects.

Top Catching Prospects

1. Joseph Miller, C/INF/OF, Oswego, 2019
6-foot, 167-pound catcher, lean athletic frame, loose long-limbed. Ran a 6.87 in the 60. Versatile defender, speed and athleticism play at multiple positions. Arm action is loose and athletic, flashed carry, short and over the top, 81 mph across the infield, 83 mph from the outfield, 75 mph out of the crouch. Out of the crouch exchange is quick and clean, footwork is athletic, 1.93-2.07 pop times. Hands are soft and confident all over the field, shows body control and actions on the infield. Right-handed hitter, slightly open stance, short leg lift stride, solid balance, athletic in the box. Hits off front foot at times, occasional line drive contact. 89 mph exit velocity from the tee.

2. Alex Powers, C, Prairie Ridge, 2019
Lean lanky frame, projectable 6-foot-1, 172-pound catcher. Showed big arm strength out of the crouch for his age, over the top slot, long release at times, carry to target, 79 mph out of the crouch. Pop times ranged 2.00-2.14, times with decrease with quicker release, athletic defender, flexible and moves well, shows bounce behind the plate. Soft handed receiver, stays quiet. Right-handed hitter, balanced balanced stance, short stride, good balance. Athletic in the box with loose hands, flashed hard pull side contact. 85 mph exit velocity from the tee. 7.23 runner in the 60.

3. Max Malley, C/INF, Marist, 2019
5-foot-8, 145-pound catcher/infielder, smaller lean frame. Right-handed hitter, balanced stance, smooth loading action with leg lift trigger, solid balance through contact. Worked the middle of the field in BP, showed occasional barrel control, average bat speed. Hits in rhythm with uphill path. 79 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm action is short and over the top, quick release, loose arm showed accuracy to target, exchanges the baseball cleanly, 73 mph from the crouch, 83 mph across the infield. Pop times played at 2.05-2.11. Shows soft hands defensively, actions profile best on the infield. 7.14 runner in the 60.

4. William Heffernan, C, Lane Tech, 2019
6-foot, 160-pound catcher, lean wiry frame. Right-handed hitter, open stance, leg kick trigger. Aggressive swing, pull side approach, hits off front foot, line drive contact in BP. 77 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm played short and over the top, flashed carry and accuracy, 73 mph. Exchange is quick, gets tall out of the chute, 2.05-2.30 pop time. 7.23 runner in the 60.

5. Julio Cajigas, C/OF/INF, Romeoville, 2019
5-foot-9, 170-pound catcher, strong physical build. Switch-hitter, path works with length on uphill plane, pull side approach. 86 mph exit velocity from the right side, 88 mph exit velocity from the left side. Shows arm strength on the diamond, 77 mph out of the crouch, 84 mph from the outfield, 85 mph across the diamond. Pop times ranged 1.94-2.07. 6.95 runner in the 60. Defensively profiles best in the outfield.

Best of the Rest (Listed Alphabetically)

J. Connor Anderson, C, Winnebago, 2019
5-foot-9, 165-pound left-handed hitting catcher, strong athletic frame, mature build. Offensively hits from a balanced setup, slightly closed, short stride, gets into lower half. Showed raw strength with the bat, path has length, level through contact, pull side approach. 82 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm played at 67 mph, short arm action, over the top slot. Pop times 2.28-2.33. 7.86 runner in the 60.  

Angelo Cantelo, C, Marian Catholic, 2019
6-foot, 215-pound catcher, large build , strong lower half. Right-handed hitter, tall setup, slightly open stance, short stride, little loading action. Simple swing, shows strength and lifts the baseball, bat speed present, gap to gap approach. 95 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively posted pops at 2.15-2.33. Gets upright out of the crouch, arm action is loose from a lower slot, 74 mph out of the crouch. 7.72 runner in the 60.

Aden Cassidy, C, Dakota, 2019
5-foot-9, 170-pound catcher, strong, developed build. Right-handed hitter, balanced stance, short stride, recoil finish. Firm swing, works slightly uphill to pull side. 79 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm plays over the top, 73 mph arm strength. Pop times registered at 2.11-2.27 out of the crouch, gets tall at times. 7.47 runner in the 60.

Carter Gette, C, Batavia, 2019
5-foot-9, 182-pound catcher. Right-handed hitter, slightly open stance, short stride, average balance. Shows bat strength, strong and loose hands, line drive contact, path is level, showed bat speed, 83 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm played at 70 mph out of the crouch, long over the top slot. 2.08-2.26 pop times out of the crouch. 7.49 runner in the 60.

Andrew Johnson, C, Stevenson, 2019
5-foot-10, 165-pound catcher, athletic frame. Agile defender behind the dish, block and recovers well, exchange is quick. Arm action is short and showed accuracy, 70 mph out of the crouch. Pop times ranged 2.04-2.26. Right-handed hitter, open setup, average balance. Uphill path, scoops pull side contact, 76 mph exit velocity from the tee. 7.48 runner in the 60.

Jack Jonata, C, Stevenson, 2019
5-foot-8, 150-pound catcher, smaller frame with some strength. Defensively arm played short and over the top, gets long at times and loses accuracy, 72 mph out of the crouch. Hands are soft, quiet receiver with excellent flexibility, present low target well, shows energy behind the plate. Pop times ranged 2.18-2.32, can cut it down with shorter actions. Right-handed hitter, balanced stance, leg lift stride, good balance. Path stays on top of the baseball, occasional backspin while working the middle of the field. 79 mph exit velocity from the tee. 7.76 runner in the 60.

Joseph Marcucci, C, Rolling Meadows, 2019
6-foot, 190-pound catcher, strong sturdy build, carries present strength. Left-handed hitter, balanced stance, short stride. Shows bat strength at times, rotational type with pull side pop. Path has some length on uphill plane, 90 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm action has length, firm, 69 mph. Pop times ranged 2.14-2.33. 7.40 runner in the 60.

Bradley Miller, C, Oak Forest, 2019
6-foot, 185-pound catcher, athletic build. Right-handed hitter, slightly open stance, short stride, average balance. Shows strength with the bat at times, short slightly uphill path. 85 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm played over the top, 72 mph, direction and exchange out of the chute can improve up his 2.18-2.29 pop time. Showed softer hands in the pen, able to present the low strike. 7.41 runner in the 60.  

Jonathan Mroz, C, Hampshire, 2019
6-foot, 195-pound catcher, large frame. Right-handed hitter, open stance, short stride to even. Strong simple swing, showed some bat speed, path works uphill, gap to gap approach, on time. 87 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm played at 68 mph, short over the top slot. 2.18-2.32 pop times. Ran the 60 at 8.21.

Jalen Ping, C, Glenwood, 2019
5-foot-10, 160-pound catcher, lean athletic frame. Arm showed strength at times, short over the top slot, 73 mph. Pop times ranged 2.25-2.47. Right-handed hitter, balanced setup, slightly open, short leg lift trigger. Path works uphill, shoulders go with it, showed pull line drive contact in BP, occasionally sprays. Above average bat speed, 85 mph exit velocity from the tee. 7.51 runner in the 60.

Nathan Ralston, C, Stevenson, 2019
5-foot-8, 160-pound catcher, average build with some present strength. Right-handed hitter, wide setup, loads hands back, no stride. Long uphill path, lacks extension at times, 79 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm plays at 66 mph out of the crouch, 2.25-2.33 pop times. Gets upright out of the chute, willing blocker with solid base, solid receiver.  

Donald Stricklin, C, New Trier, 2019
5-foot-7, 170-pound catcher, stocky build, sturdy lower half. Above average defensive catcher, arm played short and over the top, flashed quick release, accurate to the bag, 71 mph out of the crouch. 2.10-2.26 pop times. Flexible in the crouch, moves well, showed soft hands, presents pitches well. Right-handed hitter, open setup, short stride to even. Showed bat strength, average bat speed on uphill path, occasional pull side approach. 88 mph exit velocity from the tee. 7.71 runner in the 60.

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