Prep Baseball Report

Underclass Trials: Quick Hits

By Illinois Scouting Staff

The Underclass Trials is a kickoff to the PBR summer showcase schedule, bringing over 100 2019 and 2020 graduates to Boomers Stadium. This event always unveils new talent into the PBR database and potential top prospects for the summer’s premier events - PBR Future Games and Underclass Games.

Here’s a look at some quick notes from top performers and highlights:

+     RHP Collin Witzke (Oswego East) has been on the PBR radar as a projectable right-hander with a slender frame. It looks like Witzke has made his jump, running his fastball up to 87 mph, a four mph jump since seeing him this winter.

+     Some 2020 RHP’s that look to be on a similar path to Witzke include 6-foot-4, 155-pound Nolan Fasel (Andrew), 6-foot-3, 170-pound Alex Rohrer (Andrew) and 6-foot-1, 175-pound Tommy Kelly (Peoria Notre Dame), all lanky RHP’s with upside arm actions.

+     2021 LHP Ryan Kraft (Lincoln-Way Central) may have been the biggest revelation on the mound, Kraft sat an easy 77-78 mph, touched 79 mph and showed feel for three pitches.

+     A pair of left-handed arms stood out in the 2020 class - Ben Gerl of Lincoln-Way West and Emmett Olson of Maine West both showed upper 70’s fastballs. Gerl also swung the bat from the left side, showing legitimate two-way talents.

+     2019’s Carlos Martinez (Grant), Cameron Bufford (Marian Catholic) and Ethan Harrast (Hinsdale Central) both showed good glovework that can stick in the middle infield.

+     Two left-handed bats from Rock Island HS really caught the eye of scouts. 2019 Charlie Allison is a long projectable frame with loose hands and a ton of upside. 2020 Vincent Esposito wowed scouts with his strength and pop from the left side at such a young age.

+     Isaiah Coupet (Homewood-Flossmoor, 2020) stood out with a his overall game. He is a L/L outfielder who can handle the bat well and shows athletic actions in the outfield.

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