Top Tier Central: Takeaways
July 10, 2023
On Tuesday, June 6th, the PBR Illinois staff traveled to Triton College to host the Top Tier Scout Day, where 150+ players from the Top Tier program participated in a pro-style workout in front of our staff.
Today we’ll dive deeper into a few of the players who popped to our scouts on the day of this event. We broke down the event into individual takeaway stories from each Top Tier affiliate. Below you’ll learn more about a handful of names to know from the Top Tier Central team.
TOP TIER CENTRAL: TAKEAWAYS
RHP/INF Davis Weeks (Dunlap, 2025) provided one of the most impressive ‘pens of the day. Standing at 6-foot-2, 175-pounds, Weeks showed a clean and easy delivery working down the mound with little effort. He landed all three of his offering for strikes, with his fastball sitting 84-85 mph, T85.2 mph, working mostly straight. Weeks’ slider plays firm at 72.5-74.3 with 10/4 shape and landed at the bottom of the zone. Finishing off his repertoire, he threw a mid-70s change-up with fade to the arm side (11.5” HM avg). Weeks is also a follow as a position player, taking a clean round of defense with fluid actions and ability to move efficiently to both sides. He showed off an 83 mph arm across the diamond and has a smooth, easy right-handed swing that produced upper-80s exit velocities.
𝐓𝐨𝐩 𝐓𝐢𝐞𝐫 𝐒𝐜𝐨𝐮𝐭 𝐃𝐚𝐲— PBR Illinois (@PBRIllinois) June 12, 2023
RHP Davis Weeks (Dunlap, 2025) showed a clean, controlled operation with three-pitch polish at the Top Tier Scout Day:
◼️ 6'2", 175 lbs
◼️ FB 84-85 mph
◼️ SL 73-74 mph
◼️ CH 76-77 mph
👤: https://t.co/w3SFIjv8Hx pic.twitter.com/FhMSA62Bb5
LHP/OF Owen Shissler (Dunlap, 2025) stands at 5-foot-11, 180-pounds, with strength throughout and is another two-way prospect of note. At the plate, the left-handed hitter exclusively worked line drives up the middle and to the pull-side throughout BP. He has a short, strong swing and works to keep his hands inside the baseball. He’s an athletic defender from the outfield, working through the ball with a strong arm to match (83 mph max). Shissler also hopped on the mound and worked from a simple, stretch-only delivery. His fastball sat in the low-80s, topping out at 82 mph. His change-up was his best offspeed offering with quality arm-side fade (13” HM avg).
C Caleb Hornbrook (Normal University, 2026) has an advanced 5-foot-11, 175-pound frame with a strong lower half and he worked to all fields during his round of BP, showing off a short, compact, right-handed swing. Hornbrook's furthest batted ball traveled 316 feet and he registered an 84.6 mh max exit velocity. Behind the plate he consistently put throws to second base on the bag, recording a low pop time of 2.19.
Another freshman with an above-average frame was RHP/SS Layten Gerdes (Fieldcrest, 2026). The 6-foot, 175-pound athletic, strong, incoming sophomore showed upside on the mound and as a position player. On the mound he moves athletically with a loose, clean arm and present arm speed. His fastball played in the upper-70s, with more in the tank. He also spun a mid-60s curveball with 11/5 shape, intent and it averaged 12.9 inches of horizontal movement. Gerdes also featured a 10/4 slider with 12.7 inches of horizontal movement. Gerdes was just as intriguing with his right-handed bat that has athletic, fluid movement patterns, stays short to the baseball and consistently works to the middle of the field on a line. He also shows clean, steady hands on the infield and topped at 80 mph across.
INF Connor MacMillan (Normal University, 2025) is a 6-foot, 160-pound, wiry, athletic, left-handed hitting infielder with upside. When he synced up and stayed on the barrel, MacMillan consistently sent line drives to the pull-side, featuring a loose, fluid swing that plays with rhythm. An agile defender, MacMillan showed smooth infield actions, plays light on his feet and has a loose arm that played with life across the diamond at 85 mph.
INF Kyle Beaty (Normal Community, 2025) has a high offensive ceiling with a fluid right-handed swing that stays on-plane and through the hitting zone a long time. He starts in a wide, strong base and finishes on balance while controlling the barrel and driving the ball with authority to the pull side of the diamond. Defensively he flashes actions and steady hands to go along with a 79 mph arm across the diamond. Follow 2025 infielder.
RHP/OF Jonah Roper is another Normal Community product to keep an eye on moving forward. Roper has a developing 6-foot-2, 180-pound frame, loose, clean arm stroke and makings of a three-pitch mix. His fastball played easy out of the hand and sat in the low-80s, T82.4 mph. He also featured a low-70s curveball with 2067 average rpm and a 69-71 mph changeup that played with fade at the bottom of the zone. Roper also swings a left-handed bat that stays on-plane and works with natural loft to the pull-side.
OF Logan Rosenthal and C Will Haley are two 2026s with above-average speed for their age coming through the halls of St. Joseph-Ogden. Rosenthal has a 5-foot-9, 160-pound, compact, strong frame, ran a 7.36 laser-timed 60 and has a flat left-handed swing. Haley has a 5-foot-10, 150-pound, wiry, athletic frame, repeatable right-handed swing that stays on balance throughout and works to present pitches in and around the zone.
INF/RHP Jonathan Stunkel (Putnam County, 2026) was yet another 2026 worth a mention on the day. The 5-foot-10, 165-pound left-handed hitter has a smooth, easy swing that plays simple and on balance. Stunkel consistently sent balls back up the middle for line drives, producing mid-80s exit velocities. On the mound, he has a fluid, athletic delivery, clean arm and his fastball played in the upper-70s with more to come down the road. His best offspeed pitch during this bullpen was his changeup that fades to the arm-side with an average of 11 inches of horizontal movement.
C Alex Kiefer (Mount Vernon, 2025) is a compact 5-foot-10, 180-pound switch-hitting catcher who was arguably one of the top defensive catchers from the entire day. Kiefer was clean, highly-repeatable and all over the second-base bag coming out of the chute, topping at 77 mph with a low pop time of 2.05. He is also a polished receiver with quiet actions, flexible hips and soft hands. Offensively, he works to the pull side from both sides of the plate and looks to elevate the baseball.
CLICK HERE for a link to the event page.
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