PBR Illinois Player of the Week: RHP/3B Owen Murphy

By: Diego Solares
Associate Scout, Staff Writer

Prior to the start of this spring season, RHP/3B Owen Murphy (Riverside-Brookfield, 2022; Notre Dame) was widely considered an upper-tier prospect in the Midwest’s 2022 MLB Draft cycle. He was a standout at the Super 60 Pro Showcase at the plate, showing out as one of the event’s top offensive performers despite being mostly considered for his prowess on the mound.

Murphy’s done nothing but solidify his status since the start of the IHSA season and is on pace to repeat as the PBR Illinois Player of the Year. On the season, Murphy is slashing .525/.672/1.400 with nine home runs, 33 RBIs, 27 runs scored, and 16 walks. He’s also struck out 70 batters and allowed just four hits in total across 27 innings of work, walking just one of the 86 he’s faced.

Perhaps Murphy’s loudest all-around performance came last week, where he helped lead the Bulldogs to a perfect 4-0 stretch, upping their season record to 12-2. On Monday, in a 15-2 victory, Murphy blasted two home runs, both of them traveling well over the left field fence, and he finished the day with four RBIs, two runs scored, a walk, and stolen base.

To further add on to his dominance, Murphy punched out 14 batters on that same day across six innings of scoreless ball, allowing just two hits while walking none. He threw 76.6% of his pitches for strikes, commanding an arsenal that featured a fastball up to 94 mph, sitting in the low-90s throughout.

The Bulldogs won again on Tuesday, defeating Wheaton Academy 12-2. Murphy walked twice and scored two runs, but his lone hit of the contest was another home run, blasting a two-run shot to center field in the bottom half of the first inning. Murphy helped lead the Bulldogs to a 15-0 victory on Thursday, finishing the game with two hits and five RBIs, including a grand slam. He homered again in a 15-8 win on Friday, driving in two and scoring three times on his own, all while walking twice.

In total, Murphy finished the week 7-for-11 with 13 RBI, 10 runs scored, two walks, and a stolen base. Five of his seven hits were home runs, including the aforementioned grand slam, and he also struck out 14 batters without walking one across six scoreless innings of work.

As we highlighted above, Murphy’s performance at the Super 60 amongst a loaded crop of prospects was noteworthy. He solidified himself as a legitimate two-way prospect, with our scouts having this to say about his performance at The MAX:

Owen Murphy 3B / RHP / Riverside-Brookfield, IL / 2022

“One of the most surprising, but welcome, takeaways on Sunday was the performance of INF/RHP Owen Murphy (Riverside-Brookfield; Notre Dame). We’ve come to expect Murphy to put together stellar work from the rubber, but Murphy continues to look like one of the nation’s top two-way players. He’s our reigning PBR Illinois Player of the Year, his high school’s starting quarterback, and his 2021 IHSA stats in baseball were equally as impressive from both the mound and the batter’s box. Sunday, Murphy asserted himself exclusively as an infielder in front of nearly 100 pro scouts. He reached the fourth highest max exit speed at the event (104.4 mph), the second highest average (97.0), and he was responsible for the farthest estimated batted ball that measured 392 feet on TrackMan. He’s made it to the No. 32 overall spot on the national Class of 2022 rankings for his pitching, but he’s answering any questions surrounding his status as a position player. Even if he is a pitcher long-term, it’s nonetheless astounding to see Murphy continue to stand out on both sides of the ball like this, and in front of peers of this caliber."

For his efforts, Murphy has been named the PBR Illinois Player of the Week, for the week of Monday, April 11 through Sunday, April 17. We're thankful for the POTW submissions we received from the coaches across the state. The players who garnered POTW consideration will earn a place within Friday's Diamond Notes story, so be on the lookout for that by the end of this week.