Prep Baseball Report

Peoria Preseason I.D.: Quick Hits

By Steve Nielsen and Drew Locascio
Illinois Scouting Staff

On Feb. 24, the PBR Illinois team hosted the third-annual Peoria Preseason I.D. at the Louisville Slugger Dome in Peoria, Ill. The event featured over 70 players from high school graduates in classes 2022-25, from across Central Illinois and beyond.

Today, our staff collaborated to highlight the biggest takeaways and highlights from Sunday’s showcase, and we’re publishing them within this Quick Hits piece. Over the next couple of days we’ll be diving deeper into all of the data we collected rolling out even more coverage from the event.

For now, take a look at the Quick Hits from Sunday.



  • C Nathan Cooley (Illinois Valley Central, 2022) showed above average arm strength out of the crouch that played up with accuracy and posted consistent pop times between 2.12-2.19. The right-handed hitter has added some quality strength to his 5-foot-10, 170-pound frame since last look and showed improved bat speed as a result. Cooley flashed quick-twitch in his right-handed swing, stays level through the zone and worked gap-to-gap.

  • Left-handed hitter, Ashton Horchem (Limestone, 2022) looks the part of a top-of-the-order bat. Horchem, who ran a 7.20 60 and was 85 mph from the outfield, took a polished round of BP. Horchem stays within himself, lets the ball travel and stays inside the baseball, spraying line-drives to all fields while showing above-average barrel control. Follow 2022 left-handed hitting outfielder.

  • One of the biggest surprises from the day was INF Trent Koehler (Lincoln, 2022). The 5-foot-10, 175-pound, right-handed hitter, showed a plus arm across the diamond that topped at 91 mph, ran a 7.13 laser-timed 60 and took a noteworthy round of BP. Koehler stays short and level to the baseball and consistently made hard, line-drive contact up the middle of the diamond with a top exit velocity of 92 mph.

  • An upside frame at 6-foot-1, 150-pounds, INF Zach Diver (Dunlap, 2022) showed well on the infield with fluid actions and a loose arm that played true and accurate across the diamond. That same loose-levered frame showed well at the plate, creating quick, whippy levers from the left-side of the plate. Diver stays flat through the zone and sprayed backspun line-drives to all fields. Upside 2022 left-handed hitting infielder to keep an eye on moving forward.

  • Catcher Ethan Sosnowski (East Peoria, 2022) was one of the more impressive frames in attendance on Wednesday. The wide-shouldered, 6-foot-2, 190-pound, right-handed hitter ran a well-above average 60 at 7.10, given his frame and position. He then carried it over to BP where he made a lot of hard, loud contact showing off a power bat. Sosnowski recorded a max exit velocity of 98.46 mph off the bat and a max distance of 373 feet, which led the event by over 20 feet.

  • Jacob Pate (Beardstown, 2022) is a strong bodied, strong armed RHP. Pate works with an uptempo delivery creating energy down the mound over a high front side. He topped at 88 mph with a true four seam type fastball that flashed carry. Pate paired it well with good feel for a steep breaking ball that played with depth off of the riding fastball. At 72-73 mph his curveball showed confidence and conviction with occasional sharp bite.

  • Kannon Kleine (Galesburg, 2022) showed off one of the better catching arms of the day. Out of a traditional catcher’s slot, Kleine has an efficient release that gets carry to the bag and a top pop time of 2.03. Kleine has a sturdy lower half build that suits him well for the position. Translating to the pate his easy bat strength produced a top three average distance in BP (310 feet; 92 mph exit velocity) with a gap-to-gap approach.

  • One of the better breaking balls was landed by RHP Kellen Hershberger (Normal Community, 2022). The 6-foot-2, 195-pound righty throws an 11/5 curveball with absolute conviction and arm speed leading to above average depth and spin (T2420 RPM). He also showed an 82-83 mph fastball that touched 85 mph with occasional arm side run. 

  • At 6-foot-4, 190-pounds, RHP Nick Rainey (Illinois Valley Central, 2022) has a prototypical pitcher's frame. He has a long levered delivery and arm action that reached 87 mph and showed a well above average changeup with feel and arm side action. Rainey, also a first baseman, ran the top 60 of the event at 6.77.

  • RHP’s David Smith (Tremont, 2022) and Davis Hofstatter (Moline, 2022) came away as two junior arms to follow moving forward. Smith, who was making his PBR-debut, is an extra large 6-foot-5, 225-pound, right-hander who ran his fastball up to 85 mph with a max spin rate of 2263 rpm. He also showed a curveball with depth at 67-69 mph (2118 max rpm) and a changeup in the mid-70’s. Hofstatter has an athletic, strong, 6-foot-3, 195-pound frame and topped out at 87 mph which is up from 80 mph from the same event last year. Both are physical, uncommitted, strong-armed right-handers to know in the junior class.

  • Arguably the biggest upside of anyone in attendance belongs to 6-foot-7, 195-pound, RHP Wes Hunt (Peoria Christian, 2022). Hunt controls his body well, given his extremely long, loose levers and showed a repeatable delivery. The arm works long and clean with minimal effort and his fastball sat 84-86 mph, touching 87 (up from 82 mph this past summer). Hunt also showed feel for a three-pitch mix including a fading changeup at the bottom of the zone and a 72-74 mph curveball with occasional depth and the ability to land for a strike. High-upside arm to keep an eye on.


  • Cole Kratzberg (Orion) is an RHP to follow in the 2023 class due to his adeptness to spin the baseball. Kratzberg had the top curveball spin rate of the day at 2572 RPM that played on an 11/5 plane and flashed sharp action. Kratzberg’s fastball topped at 81 mph. 

  • 2023 RHP Bryce Hires (Litchfield) showed a loose, actiony arm that has some upside. His fastball topped at 81 mph, but showed a well above average changeup for his age, that he throws with intent and hard arm side action (72-73 mph) and a slurve type breaking ball that flashed above average action.

  • One of the top 2023 bats in attendance looked to be INF Sam Rolhfing (Harvest Christian, 2023). The 6-foot-2, 162-pound, right-handed hitter has loose-levers and creates advanced whip in the barrel. Rohlfing was consistently on time, worked the whole field and creates some jump off the barrel; 91 mph max exit velocity during BP. 

  • A couple other 2023 bats to keep an eye on are OF Jacob Blunck (Maroa-Forsyth) and C Colton Musgrave (Tuscola). Blunck, a 5-foot-9, 150-pound, right-handed hitter ran a 6.85 60 and showed loose, quick hands at the plate. Musgrave has a compact 5-foot-11, 200-pound frame and showed an above-average feel to hit. Musgrave stays short, direct and level to the ball, stays through the zone a long time and was all over the barrel in his round of BP. 

2024 & 2025 PROSPECTS

  • Kaeden Bowles (Cuba) is an upside 2024 who, at just 5-foot-10, 135-pounds showed the makings of a well above average defender on the infield. He showed signs of glove confidence and bounce on the infield that will likely grow with maturity. The same holds true with his left-handed swing. Bowles hits with fluid rhythm, athletic hands, stays level through the zone and consistently drove line-drives back up the middle of the diamond. Follow 2024 infielder as he continues to mature and add strength to his lean frame.

  • 2024 Joshua Arnett (Lewistown) put together a strong defensive showing behind the plate for his age. With a short over the top stroke, his arm played true at times and posted his best pop at 2.10.

  • RHP Cole Noreuil (Delevan, 2024) is one of the higher upside arms of the day. Just a freshman, the 6-foot, 168-pounder topped at 85 mph sitting 82-84 mph out of a high ¾ slot. Noreuil is an athletic arm still developing spin for his breaking ball but showed above average fade and feel for his changeup at 76-78 mph.

  • Another 2024 arm to keep an eye on is the wiry frame of 6-foot-1, 160-pound Devan Tupper (Normal University). Tupper has a projectable arm swing out of a high ¾ slot sitting 78-79, T80 mph with moderate effort and produces a ton of arm side run. Tupper, also an outfielder, ran a 7.17 60 and has a simple right-handed swing with a barrel control approach. 

  • 2025 LHP/1B Talan Hull (Galva) has yet to step into high school, but will surely be a name on our radar going forward. Hull is a 6-foot-2, 195-pound L/L two-way prospect, who showed a ton of feel for his age both on the mound and at the plate; On the mound, he was consistently landing both a curveball and changeup around the zone and getting above average arm side action on a 76-77 mph fastball. Not to be outdone, his round of BP was one of the more impressive ones on the evening. Hull creates advanced bat speed for his age, stays balanced through contact and was driving balls with authority to both gaps. 

  • Another 2025 who showed an advanced feel to hit was C Tyler Humphrey (Washington). Humphrey has a high-waisted, lean, 5-foot-9, 146-pound, frame and a polished right-handed swing. Humphrey is relaxed and quiet in the box, lets the ball travel and stays within himself while creating simple, well-above average bat speed. Humphrey also showed a knack for back spinning line-drives to the opposite field.