Prospect Identification Showcase 6.19.13: Pitching Analysis

By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Director

Today we break down the pitching portion of the Prospect Identification Showcase on June 19. Brenden Saak once again found himself atop the list as the righty topped out at 85 mph and showed an excellent cutter that we threw aggressively and with biting action.

Here's a look at our top ten pitchers from the event.

Scouting Reports by Dan Duran

Top Pitchers

1. Brenden Saak, OF/RHP, Belleville West, 2014
Athletically built outfielder and right-handed pitcher, 5-foot-9, 165-pounds, showed a well-rounded game with arm strength.  Defensively displayed well above average actions and an advanced arm throwing 87 mph from the outfield, arm played from an over the top arm slot with short loose action, showed plenty of carry to his target. Fielded the position athletically with solid footwork and clean exchange, worked through the baseball well. Offensively hits from a slightly open stance, short leg kick trigger. Above average bat speed at the plate, 85 mph exit velocity. Line drive gap to gap type hitter, above average hand eye, consistent hard contact, barrel awareness. Ran a 7.4 60.  On the mound, delivery has direction towards the plate, releasing with short, quick arm action from a high ¾ slot. Fastball sat 82-84 mph with run, topping at 85 mph. Showed a cutter that featured more slider action at 77-78 mph, late bite, above average action, swing and miss capabilities. Curveball had 11/5 action sitting 67-68 mph. Also showed feel for his changeup between 73-75 mph with command and occasional sink.

2. Zach Vahle, MIF/RHP, Quincy Notre Dame, 2014
The 5-foot-11, 155-pound middle-infielder and pitcher flashed tools throughout the showcase that could play at the next level. Showed solid footwork, 7.1 60.  Made clean exchanges defensively, threw with loose arm action from a high ¾ slot at 83 mph with accuracy across the infield.  Offensively hits with a gap-to-gap approach– setting up at the plate with balance and a smooth toe-tap load.  Recorded an exit velocity of 81 mph off the tee.  On the mound, Vahle showed some rhythm in his delivery and comes from a high ¾ arm slot.  Fastball ranged 80-83 mph flashing run, topping at 84 mph. Had feel and control for curveball, 12/6 action sitting 68-69 mph; changeup at 76-79 mph with occasional sink.

3. Tyler Schmid, RHP, Althoff Catholic, 2014
Schmid is a right-handed pitcher at 6-foot-2, 170-pounds who showed repeatable mechanics and control of all three pitches. Tall-to-fall delivery with athletic rhythm, shows the ability to repeat his delivery well. Keeps his shoulders level and has long arm action from a ¾ slot. Works in line with the plate, landing squared and finishing with balance. Fastball was thrown at 79-80 mph with sink, topping at 81 mph, showed the ability to command his fastball. Had feel for his curveball, thrown between 68-71 mph with occasional 10/4 sweeping action, showed control. Changeup sat 74-75 mph with arm-side run, thrown with fastball similar arm action. 

4. Alex Meyers, RHP, Edwardsville, 2014
The big 6-foot-2, 200-pound pitcher showed an up-tempo delivery, releasing from a high ¾ arm slot.  His fastball flashed late action with a slightly heavier feel, sitting 82-83 mph. He throws a curveball and slider – his curveball sat 68-71 mph with sweeping 10/4 action, and slider was at 73-74 mph, lacking identity. His changeup was around 75-78 mph with occasional arm-side run. 

5. Aaron Jackson, 3B/RHP, Edwardsville, 2015
Jackson is a lanky 6-foot, 175-pound infielder and right-handed pitcher. Flashed soft hands and showed range defensively at third-base,threw 80 mph across the infield with accuracy. Offensively, hits from a balanced setup with a short stride.  Gap-to-gap hitter and squared up the ball consistently during BP– 84 mph exit velocity off the tee. The 2015 grad could be a prospect to follow as his lanky frame fills out.  Works quickly on the mound, pitching with some rhythm – has short arm action from a high ¾ slot and a balanced finish. Throws somewhat of a sneaky fastball sitting 77-79 mph; has a tight curveball at 65-67 mph with short 11/5 action; straight change is thrown with the same arm speed as his fastball ranging 71-75 mph.

6. Trey Riley, OF/SS/RHP, Edwardsville, 2016
The 5-foot-8, 140-pound left-handed hitting outfielder, infielder, and right-handed pitcher is one of the more athletic and projectable players from the event as both a position player and pitcher.  On the mound, Riley has smooth rhythm in his delivery with balance – throws with loose arm action, releasing from a high ¾ slot.  Showed command for all three pitches.  Fastball showed run and sink sitting 79-80 mph out of the windup and 74-76 from the stretch.  Curveball had short, late 11/5 action ranging 65-68 mph.  Had feel for his changeup which showed above average fading action at 65-67 mph. Defensively showed natural instincts in the field. Athletically capable of playing the infield on the move.  Displayed soft hands with a quick, clean exchange, and short quick arm action. Arm played at 75 mph across the infield and 81 mph from the outfield. Offensively, hits from the left-side with an athletic and balanced setup and a short stride. Line-drive hitter who has a plan at the plate.  Has a clean, repeatable stroke and short bat path, maintaining balance throughout the swing. Recorded an exit velocity of 75 mph and ran a 7.75 60.

7. Tyler Hosto, LHP, Edwardsville, 2016
Hosto is a 5-foot-11, 168-pound left-handed pitcher with some projectability. Tall-and-fall delivery, works with direction towards the plate throwing from a high ¾ slot. Showed control of his fastball, mostly straight, ranging 72-75 mph, topping at 78 mph. Curveball thrown on an uphill plane with 11/5 action at 61-63 mph. Showed some command for his changeup at 65-67 mph with sink. 

8. Brady Schanuel, RHP/3B, Belleville East, 2015
Schanuel is a right-handed pitcher and third baseman. His 6-foot-2, 190-pound build shows projectability particularly on the mound. He showed some rhythm in his delivery, releasing from a ¾ arm slot in a rotational manner. His fastball sat 78-80 mph but topped at 83 mph, flashing occasional sink. His 11/5 curveball was thrown at 67-69 mph with gradual break. Also threw a fading changeup at 68-71 mph, with control. Schanuel will improve with refined mechanics in his delivery. Offensively, he hits from the left side with a wide base and short stride. He makes contact on an uphill plane and has pull tendencies – recorded a 75 mph exit velocity. Defensively, he fields the position cleanly and athletically, throwing 75 mph across the diamond with accuracy.  He also ran a 7.62 60 at the event. 

9. Caleb Wagenblast, LHP, Edwardsville, 2016
The 6-foot-2, 180-pound left-handed pitcher throws with long arm action from a ¾ slot, falling third base side, delivery shows regular effort. Fastball was straight and sits 74-75 mph, topping at 76 mph.  Curveball proved to be his best pitch, flashing sharp11/5 action at 62-64 mph and has potential to be a high-level breaking ball. Changeup was left down in the zone at 71-73 mph, lacked separation from fastball. Wagenblast showed the potential for a high level breaking ball and it will be interesting to follow how the rest of his pitches develop.

10. Tynan Zeller, LHP/OF, Edwardsville, 2015
The tall and lanky outfielder and left-handed pitcher showed good projectability on the mound at 6-foot-5, 195-pounds. Zeller has a tall-and-fall delivery with some rhythm, tall balance point, and lands closed, throwing across his body with loose, high ¾ arm action. Throws his fastball downhill at 72-74 mph, topping at 77 mph, keeping the ball down in the zone. Curveball shows 11/5 action with early and gradual break ranging 61-65 mph. Left his changeup down, thrown at 65-68 mph with occasional sink and fastball similar arm action. Defensively plays clean defense in the outfield and threw 73 mph with some accuracy. At the plate, Zeller hits from the right side in a wide base using a short stride. Gets some use from his lower half and has a level bat path through the zone. Ran an 8.05 60 at the showcase. Zeller will improve and display more athleticism as he grows accustomed to his lanky frame and fills out.

Best of the Rest (Listed Alphabetically)

Dalton Archer, RHP, Edwardsville, 2014
Archer is a lanky right-handed pitcher.  Has a slow, tall-to-fall delivery, releasing at a high ¾ arm slot.  Fastball thrown between 71-74 mph; 12/6 curveball at 61-63 mph with short action; and a 68-69 mph changeup with occasional sink.

Sean Clarkson, RHP, Edwardsville, 2015
Clarkson is a 5-foot-8, 135-pound right-handed pitcher.  Shows some rhythm in his delivery and releases from a high ¾ arm slot.  Fastball at 72-74 mph, curveball with 12/6 action at 59-62 mph with some depth, and changeup at 67-69 mph with sink. 

Jacob Eccher, RHP/OF, Belleville West, 2015
Eccher is a 6-foot-1, 150-pound outfielder and right-handed pitcher.  Hits from a balanced setup, rocking his weight back on his load with a short stride. Simple, line-drive swing recording a 66 mph exit velocity.  Threw from a high ¾ slot at 75 mph from the outfield.  Ran a 7.58 60.  On the mound, Eccher throws with some effort from over the top. Straight fastball ranging 73-76 mph, curveball at 66-68 mph, and straight change sitting 70-73 mph.

Dillon Frieden, SS/RHP, Monmouth-Roseville, 2014
Frieden is a 5-foot-11, 170-pound infielder and right-handed pitcher. Displayed body control defensively.  Long arm action across the infield at 77 mph with accuracy. Offensively, hits from a balanced setup at the plate. Has a level bat path, makes use of his lower half, and maintains balance throughout the swing – exit velocity at 75 mph.  Ran a 7.41 60.  On the mound, delivery has some rhythm and lands closed. Has loose arm action from a high ¾ slot. Fastball sits 76-79 mph, topping at 80 mph; curve has 11/5 gradual slurve action between 64-67 mph thrown for strikes; knuckler sits 62-63 mph; showed some feel for his changeup ranging 69-73 mph. 

Cole Hansel, 1B/RHP, Edwardsville, 2016
Hansel is a 2016 grad with a tall, lanky frame. Hits from the left side in a tall, narrow stance using a toe-tap stride. Pull-side tendencies, swinging on an uphill plane putting lift on the ball. Throws from a high ¾ arm slot at 66 mph across the infield and ran an 8.32 60. On the mound, Hansel works with some rhythm delivering from an over-the-top arm slot. Fastball sits 70-71 mph with occasional sink; curveball flashed gradual 11/5 action at 60-61 mph; changeup sat 67-68 mph.

Alex Johnson, RHP, Edwardsville, 2015
Johnson is a 5-foot-10, 170-pound right-handed pitcher. Tall-to-fall delivery, works with great direction towards the plate, landing square and delivering from an over-the-top arm slot. Fastball was between 73-76 mph, topping at 77 mph; curve thrown at 64-65 mph with some 11/5 movement; and changeup sitting 66-68 mph. 

Brenden Kauhl, RHP, Highland, 2014
Kauhl is a 5-foot-10, 175-pound right-handed pitcher.  Showed some rhythm in his delivery with level shoulders, body working in line with the plate, releasing from a high ¾ arm slot. Fastball thrown for strikes at 76-78 mph with occasional sink, topping at 79 mph; curve showed some gradual 11/5 action ranging 65-68 mph; and changeup between 66-72 mph flashing sink. 

Anthony Kindle, RHP, Edwardsville, 2015
Kindle is a 5-foot-8, 145-pound right-handed pitcher. Throws with some rhythm in his delivery with long arm action releasing from a low ¾ slot. Throws his fastball for strikes at 74-77 mph with run and sink.  Curveball has 11/5 slurve-like action at 63-65 mph. Some feel for his changeup thrown for strikes sitting 67-68 mph with sink. 

Oliver Kolb, LHP, Belleville West, 2016
Kolb is a 6-foot, 155-pound left-handed pitcher.  He has a high ¾ arm slot, and throws only a fastball and changeup. His fastball sat 66-68 mph showing occasional run and sink. His changeup showed occasional sink and was 62-65 mph.

Daniel Lloyd, RHP, Edwardsville, 2015
Lloyd is a 6-foot, 165-pound right-handed pitcher with some projectability. Showed direction on the mound, working in line with the plate. Has short arm action and releases from an over-the-top arm slot.  Threw his fastball at 78-80 mph flashing sink. Off-speed pitches were more developed – curveball was thrown for strikes at 63-65 mph with 11/5 action; and showed good feel for his changeup sitting 69-71 mph with sink. 

Matthew Owens, LHP, Edwardsville, 2015
Owens is a left-handed pitcher with a strong lower half and some projectability. He has athletic rhythm in his tall-to-fall delivery and works with direction, in line with the plate. He has a tall balance point and keeps his shoulders level, throwing with loose arm action from a ¾ slot. Fastball was thrown for strikes sitting 71-73 mph with arm-side run; showed command for his slurve-type curveball which sat 58-61 mph; his changeup was around 63-66 mph with cutting action.

Chris Robinson, RHP, Edwardsville, 2015
Robinson is a 6-foot-2, 180-pound right-handed pitcher. Delivery showed some rhythm and direction towards home plate with a balanced finish. Has some loose arm action throwing from over the top. Straight fastball sitting 77-79; curveball at 65-67 mph; and changeup around 66-68 mph.

Sam Trigillo, RHP, Springfield, 2015
Trigillo is a long, lanky right-handed pitcher whose 6-foot-3, 175-pound build shows some projectability on the mound.  He has a tall-to-fall delivery coming from an over-the-top slot.  He showed some command for his fastball which sat 73-75 mph, topping out at 77 mph. He showed feel and some command for his curveball which ranged 62-65 mph with slight 11/5 action. His changeup was left down in the zone around 65-68 mph with occasional sink.   

Jacob Trueb, RHP, Edwardsville, 2014
Trueb is a 6-foot, 192-pound right-handed pitcher. Has a tall balance point and throws with some effort from a ¾ slot.  howed some command for his fastball which sat 79-81 mph with run; some command for his curveball with tight spin with 11/5 break at 65-67 mph; changeup has some cut sitting 74-75 mph. 

Ryker Warmouth, OF/RHP, Edwardsville, 2016
Warmouth is a 5-foot-5, 125-pound outfielder and right-handed pitcher. Ran a  7.43 60. Fielded the position well, threw 75 mph from the outfield. Hits from a balanced setup and maintains balance throughout the swing.  Recorded an exit velocity of 73 mph. On the mound, Ryker throws with short, loose arm action from a high ¾ arm slot.  Fastball was thrown for strikes at 70-73 mph with sink. Curveball was more of a slurve with 11/5 gradual break at 58-59 mph. Changeup had cutting action ranging 63-66 mph. 

Clayton Werries, RHP, Jacksonville, 2014
Werries is a big 6-foot-5, 220-pound right-handed pitcher who delivers with some rhythm and long arm action from a high ¾ slot. His fastball flashed some cut at 75-78 mph; curveball showed slight 11/5 action with gradual break at 68-71 mph; and changeup was at 75-76 mph with cutting action. 

Jordan Yenne, 3B/RHP, Edwardsville, 2016
Yenne is a lanky third-baseman and right-handed pitcher. Defensively capable of playing on the move.  Throws with long, loose arm action from over-the-top with accuracy at 72 mph across the infield.  Hits from a balanced stance with a short stride, recording a 73 mph exit velocity. On the mound, showed some rhythm in his delivery and works with some direction towards the plate, landing squared – releases from a high ¾ arm slot.  Showed some command of his fastball and curveball. Fastball was 71-74 mph, topping at 74 mph; curveball had gradual 11/5 break around 58-61 mph; and changeup ranged 61-65 mph.

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