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PBR Illinois 2022 Winter Showcase Calendar: Release


By Illinois Staff

On Nov. 9, Prep Baseball Report unveiled its national Preseason ID showcase schedule, including PBR Illinois’ seven Preseason ID events. It all starts on Feb. 5 in Aurora, with events spanning the state, leading to the start of the IHSA season in the early spring.

If you’re curious to learn more about the Prep Baseball Report’s showcase structure, here’s an idea of what you can expect while attending and following a PBR showcase.

WHAT IS A PRESEASON ID EVENT?

The Preseason ID series is unique in several ways. It serves as an identifier heading into the spring high school season, giving our scouts as well as college recruiters, a list of prospects to follow as they plan their spring coverage. We also tend to see prospects’ best performances in the Preseason, as most athletes are fresh and coming off of strict and targeted off-season training programs that have resulted in big gains, primed for updating their PBR profile. All of which lends the perfect opportunity to secure invitations to some of the summer's biggest invite-only events such as the Top Prospect Games, PBR Future Games, and more. 

Our staff strategically hosts Preseason ID events throughout the state in search of players who have taken advantage of the offseason, identifying new prospects to add to our follow lists or players our staff is already familiar with who are on the rise.

All player information including tech metrics, stats, videos, scouting reports and more will be hosted to the Prep Baseball Report website, bolstering the player profile, which is subscribed to by more than 800 colleges across the country.

AURORA PRESEASON ID

We’re kicking off our Preseason ID series in Aurora in 2022, heading back to Aurora Sports Zone. Last year, this event helped us identify a few players who went on to be in-state standouts and eventually earned invitations to select events. For example, 3B/RHP Christian Graves (Jacobs, 2023) and INF Adam Schilz (Warren, 2023) each impressed offensively at this event, from opposite sides of the plate. Fellow ‘23 RHP/INF Anthony Edge (Jacobs) landed on the radar at this event, and actually went on to earn a spot on Team Illinois at the PBR Future Games, and he’s now committed to Bradley.

MCHENRY PRESEASON ID


We’ve been hosting this event in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago since 2016, and it’s typically revealed to us a high number of follow players from the area. Most recently, we witnessed the South Carolina recruit, C Ryan Bakes (Huntley, 2023), show off his massive offseason gains, while his brother OF Brayden Bakes (Huntley; uncommitted) emerged from the offseason as one of the most physical left-handed hitters in the state’s ‘23 class. Several arms typically vault themselves from the winter at this ID event, too, like the recent examples of RHP Andrew Ressler (Huntley, 2023; Butler), RHP Adam Guazzo (Huntley, 2022; Valparaiso), RHP Nathan Chapman (Jacobs, 2022; Eastern Illinois), and RHP Tyler Deleskiewicz (Badger, WI, 2022; UW-Milwaukee), among many others.

O’HARE PRESEASON ID


Last year, for the first time, we ran this Preseason ID at the brand-new Bo Jackson’s Elite Sports Dome in Bensenville, where we hosted nearly 130 of the area’s high school-aged players. It was here that we got a good look at another one of the top juniors in the state, OF AJ Garcia (DePaul College Prep, 2023; Indiana), who’s a high-end athlete, having run one of the fastest 60-yard dash times of the winter here. Sophomore OF Khamaree Thomas (Kenwood, 2024) broke out at this event, too, as did senior OF Ryan Henschel (Glenbrook North, 2022), who’s now committed to Rhode Island.

CHICAGO PRESEASON ID


We’re going on our fourth consecutive year visiting the Pullman Community Center in Chicago to host this mid-February event. RHP/3B Ryan Kramer (Latin School, 2022; College of Wooster) really leapt out from this event to emerge as a follow uncommitted senior at the time, now committed to a prominent Division III program. From Brooks College Prep, OF William Hill (2023) completely jumped out of the offseason gates by running a 6.79 here and reaching a 94 mph high both from the outfield and from the batter’s box, leading to a spot on Team Illinois at the PBR Future Games.

LOCKPORT PRESEASON ID

This is consistently the largest event along our Preseason ID series, as over 160 players attended last year’s event at the Lockport Bo Jackson’s Elite Sports Dome. Naperville Central’s C Colin Barczi (2023) capped a terrific year by committing to Vanderbilt, and that kind of next-level skill set was immediately on display at our latest Lockport ID. Barczi was rostered on Team Illinois this past August, as was LHP Tore Indomenico (St. Ignatius, 2023; Notre Dame), who truly made the most of his time on the mound at this event, where he was up to 89 mph with three-pitch upside. Historically, this has been a popular event for breakout juniors, like INF/RHP Randy Seymour (Lincoln-Way East, 2022) and RHP/INF Max Hansmann (York, 2022), who are now-seniors committed to Michigan State and Evansville, respectively.

PEORIA PRESEASON ID


Our staff looks forward to its annual trip to Central Illinois, the spot of the perennial Peoria Preseason ID. The 2021 event featured over 70 players, and it regularly introduces our team to players we’ve not yet seen before, making it a particularly useful showcase. A pair of ‘25s actually landed on the radar following this year’s trip to Peoria: LHP/1B Talan Hull (Galva) and C Tyler Humphrey (Washington Community). The two made our watchlists and turned them into priority players to check in on along the summer’s tournament season. A junior at the time, C Nathan Cooley (Illinois Valley Central, 2022) was among the event’s top statistical performers, and he eventually landed a state ranking inside the top-200, now committed to Heartland CC.

JOLIET PRESEASON ID


We’re headed back to Shorewood this winter to host the second annual Joliet Preseason ID to conclude our Preseason ID series, taking place at Rhino Baseball Academy on Feb. 27. It was at this event where RHP Ashton Izzi (Oswego East, 2022; Wichita State) cemented himself as one of the top arms in the state’s 2022 class, vaulting into the national rankings too. RHP Ryan Anderson (Minooka, 2024) popped at this event as well, paving the way for an eventual invitation to the PBR Future Games, despite being an underclassmen. RHP Abram Wills (Coal City, 2022) and RHP Chase Martin (Roanoke-Benson, 2022; Black Hawk JC) are currently both top-100 prospects in the state’s senior class that were amongst the day’s standouts. Last year’s roster already has 20 college commits, a number expected to rise, and we’re eager to see the talent that this year’s group has to offer.

Click here to view the 2022 PBR Illinois showcase calendar.

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