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Top Prospect - Chicago: Catcher Analysis


Illinois Staff

The Top Prospect - Chicago has perennially been one of the Midwest's biggest events of the summer for Prep Baseball Report. Year in and year out, high level talent is on display to showcase their abilities in front of collegiate and professional scouts. This year’s event was no different, and with the amount of talent that was in attendance, we are excited to roll out the remainder of our analysis for the Top Prospect - Chicago over the coming days. 

We will begin the week by breaking down the top prospects at the catcher position. Tomorrow we will roll out our infield analysis -- followed by outfielders, pitchers, and the best overall prospects on Friday. 


A pair of 2020 Notre Dame products in Matthew Murphy and Bryan Broecker claimed the top spots in what turned out to be quite an impressive group of backstops. Both possess physical frames, in their own right, with big right-handed swings paired with athletic actions behind the dish. Their names keep coming up over the summer and the high school teammates will not be on the market for long. 

Switch-hitting catcher Cole Conn (St. Charles East, 2020) continues to show polish in the bat, sporting a short, rhythmic stroke from both sides of the dish. Conn is already well-known for his defensive prowess behind the plate and it showed today being only one of two prospects to eclipse the sub-2 pop-time, event wide - the other was Murphy.


To see how the rest of the top-5 rankings played out along with reports on all other catching prospects in attendance, continue on below. 

To look back at the statistical analysis from the event, click here


TOP CATCHING PROSPECTS

1. Matthew Murphy, Notre Dame, 2020
Positional Profile: C/OF
Body: 5-foot-11, 185-pounds. Strong, compact build, athletic.
Hit: RHH. Open, wide stance, smooth load, short stride to even. Aggressive, quick hands, uphill path with some length, showed a gap-to-gap approach with pull-side favoritism, fluid rhythm through contact.
Power: 98 mph exit velocity from the tee. Fast bat speed with present bat strength.
Arm: RH. C - 80 mph.  Short, loose arm action, over-the-top slot, accurate throws with carry.
Defense: 1.97- 2.08 pop times. Athletic actions, soft hands, quick feet, clean exchange, quick to release, agile blocks, plays through.
Run: 7.17 runner in the 60. 

2. Bryan Broecker, Notre Dame, 2020
Positional Profile: C/3B
Body: 6-foot-1, 185-pounds. Athletic build with well-proportioned strength.
Hit: RHH. Wide, balanced stance, smooth load, short toe tap trigger maintains control.  Short bat path works on an uphill plane, strong hands, repeated hard contact with lift to all fields.
Power: 94 mph exit velocity from the tee. Fast bat speed paired with present bat strength, upside power potential.
Arm: RH. C - 79 mph. INF - 84 mph. Short arm action, high 3/4 slot, athletic arm action on the infield.
Defense: 2.04- 2.12 pop times. Steady hands behind the plate, clean exchange to release, soft receiver, cushioned blocks. Attacks through the ball in the infield, quick to release, ball carried across.
Run: 6.83 runner in the 60. Present foot speed, above average for size.

3. Cole Conn, St. Charles East, 2020
Positional Profile: C/OF
Body: 6-foot, 165-pounds. Athletic, projectibile build.
Hit: SH. Even setup, smooth load, hanging foot timing trigger, maintains control. Loose and athletic hands, short path with rhythm through contact, middle/line drive approach from the right side.
Power: 90 mph exit velocity from the tee. Showed ability to lift the ball to his pull side from the left side of the dish.
Arm: RH. C - 79 mph. OF - 87 mph. Short, loose arm action, clean over the top slot, accurate throws with carry.
Defense: 1.98- 2.11 pop times. Athletic overall actions, soft hands, quick and clean exchange to release, fluid footwork, cushioned blocks, plays through.
Run: 7.05 runner in the 60. 

4. Ryan McCoy, Lincoln-Way East, 2020
Positional Profile: C/SS
Body: 6-foot-4, 200-pounds. Lanky and athletic frame, room for added strength.
Hit: LHH. Balanced, wide stance, smooth load, short toe lift stride. Path works uphill, loose hands stay connected through contact, gap to gap approach.
Power: 86 mph exit velocity from the tee. Fast bat speed, showed hard, lifted contact to his pull side gap.
Arm: RH. C - 80 mph. Short arm action, over the top slot, throws carried to the bag.
Defense: 2.06- 2.15 pop times. Aggressive out the chute, steady hands, clean exchange.
Run: 7.00 runner in the 60. Long, easy strides.

5. Bryce Miller, Franklin, 2020
Positional Profile: C/1B
Body: 6-foot-2, 210-pounds. Strong build, present strength in frame.
Hit: RHH. Balance stance, smooth load, short stride, calm pre-pitch. Short and level bat path, line drive ability with a gap-to-gap approach, rhythm involved.
Power: 92 mph exit velocity from the tee. Present bat strength.
Arm: RH. C - 80 mph. Loose arm action with length, over the top slot, true ball, carried with accuracy to the bag.
Defense: 2.06- 2.18 pop times. Easy, athletic actions out the chute, fluid footwork, clean exchange, long to release.
Run: 7.61 runner in the 60.

Best of the Rest (Listed Alphabetically)

Blake Carey, University School of Milwaukee, 2020
Positional Profile: C/1B
Body: 6-foot-2, 195-pounds. Well-proportioned and athletic.
Hit: LHH. Even setup, wide base, smooth load, long stride into plate. Short, level bat path, line drive contact type, all fields approach.
Power: 92 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 75 mph. Short arm action, over-the-top slot, flashed accuracy to the bag.
Defense: 2.10- 2.25 pop times. Steady hands, quick exchange, adept blocker.
Run: 7.23 runner in the 60. 

Kyle Czarnecki, Minooka, 2020
Positional Profile: C/OF
Body: 5-foot-8, 191-pounds. Stout build, defined lower half.
Hit: RHH. Balanced setup, wide base, short toe-tap trigger. Strong hands, short barrel path, occasional gap-to-gap approach with more pull-side favoritism.
Power: 96 mph exit velocity from the tee. Bat strength type.
Arm: RH. C - 75 mph. Short arm action, over-the-top slot, accurate on throws, gets downhill.
Defense: 2.11- 2.29 pop times. Clean exchange, adept blocker.
Run: 7.23 runner in the 60.

Joe DeHaan, Andrew, 2020
Positional Profile: C/OF
Body: 6-foot-2, 183-pounds. Athletic build with strength.
Hit: RHH. Balanced setup, minimal load, short leg lift stride.  Short, uphill bat path, line drive ability with a middle of the field approach.
Power: 87 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 72 mph. Long arm action and draw out of the glove, high 3/4 slot.
Defense: 2.18- 2.30 pop times. Clean exchange, feet get into position to throw, blocks ball deep.
Run: 6.93 runner in the 60. Present foot speed.

Thomas Kenney, Warren, 2020
Positional Profile: C
Body: 5-foot-11, 205-pounds. Muscular build, strong lower half.
Hit: RHH. Even setup, slight bat wiggle, short stride, maintains control. Strong hands, path works uphill, occasional gap-to-gap approach with pull side favoritism, fluid rhythm through contact.
Power: 96 mph exit velocity from the tee. Generates quick bat speed.
Arm: RH. C - 77 mph. Arm action plays long and loose, long draw out of glove, over-the-top slot, flashed accuracy and carry to second.
Defense: 2.16- 2.22 pop times. Steady hands, clean exchange, long to release, some rhythm involved.
Run: 6.87 runner in the 60. Fluid runner for size.

Jake Masini, Prairie Ridge, 2020
Positional Profile: C/3B
Body: 6-foot-1, 165-pounds. Lean and athletic frame, sloped shoulders.
Hit: RHH. Open setup, smooth load, toe tap timing trigger. Loose hands, uphill bat path, uses all fields.
Power: 79 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 80 mph. Short, loose arm action out of a high 3/4 window, present arm speed, bal carried to the bag.
Defense: 2.10- 2.19 pop times. Athletic out the chute, soft hands, fluid footwork, clean exchange to release.
Run: 7.56 runner in the 60.

Luke Napleton, St. Rita, 2020
Positional Profile: C/1B
Body: 6-foot, 190-pounds.Strong, durable build.
Hit: RHH. Open, balanced stance, leg kick stride, maintains balance. Uphill path with some length, loose hands, line drive ability with pull favoritism, rhythm through contact.
Power: 96 mph exit velocity from the tee. Bat strength type.
Arm: RH. C - 76 mph. Short arm action, clean over-the-top slot.
Defense: 2.09- 2.12 pop times. Athletic actions out the chute, soft hands, clean exchange to release, plays through with bounce, cushions blocks.
Run: 7.60 runner in the 60. 

Thomas Otto, Appleton North, 2020
Positional Profile: C/1B
Body: 6-foot-2, 200-pounds. Strong, thick build.
Hit: RHH. Open, balanced stance, smooth load, leg lift timing trigger, maintains control. Direct bat path, works level to and through the zone, strong hands, gap-to-gap approach with rhythm involved.
Power: 105 mph exit velocity from the tee. Present bat strength and bat speed, easy pull side pop.
Arm: RH. C - 72 mph. INF - 80 mph. Long arm action, over the top slot.
Defense: 2.07- 2.19 pop times. Quick footwork out the chute, clean exchange, gets rid of the ball. Soft hands at first base, moves well for size.
Run: 7.47 runner in the 60.

Colin Summerhill, Loyola Academy, 2020
Positional Profile: C/OF
Body: 6-foot-1, 175-pounds. Lean and athletic frame.
Hit: RHH. Balanced setup, smooth load, high leg kick timing trigger.  Loose, easy swing, works on uphill plane, favors pull side, rhythm through contact, repeats.
Power: 91 mph exit velocity from the tee. Flashed pull side pop.
Arm: RH. C - 79 mph. Short, loose arm action, over the top slot, accurate throws on the bag.
Defense: 2.05- 2.13 pop times. Steady hands, fluid footwork, clean exchange, plays through.
Run: 7.29 runner in the 60.

Ben Wright, Benet, 2020
Positional Profile: C/1B
Body: 6-foot-1, 195-pounds. Athletically fit and defined build.
Hit: RHH. Balanced setup with crouch, bar load, short stride. Quick hands, path works uphill with some length, gap-to-gap approach.
Power: 88 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 73 mph. Short, loose arm action, over-the-top slot, accurate on throws. 
Defense: 2.19- 2.26 pop times. Aggressive out the chute, rhythm in hands, clean exchange, solid receiver, cushioned blocks.
Run: 6.89 runner in the 60. Fluid runner.

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