Unsigned Senior Showcase: Middle Infielder Analysis



By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Director - Illinois/Wisconsin

Nate Tholl (St. Laurence, 2014) took the top middle infield spot displaying an impressive set of tools across the board. His sub 7.0 60 and 86 mph arm across the diamond is a rare combination to find.

Along with Tholl we saw a number of slick fielding middle infielders who have the ability to turn the double play, play on the move, as well as make the long back handed play.

Here's how we broke down the middle infield group.

Top Infield Prospects

1. Nate Tholl, MIF, St. Laurence, 2014
6-foot, 165-pound athletic infielder with foot speed. Posted a 60 time of 6.97 seconds. Defensively, showcased soft hands with crisp footwork and a clean glove to hand release. Throws with a loose arm at 86 mph across the diamond with carry and accuracy. At the plate he hits with a balanced stance and simple mechanics that he repeats with ease. Swing is compact and athletic with extension and above average bat speed. Exit velocity was 86 mph off a tee.

2. Anthony Justiniano, SS, Roberto Clemente, 2014
6-foot, 160-pound lanky infielder. Defensively, showed high quality, athletic actions with nimble feet and soft hands. Throws with a short arm from a high ¾ slot with accuracy and some carry at 84 mph. Smooth defender, plays effortlessly. At the plate has a balanced setup with smooth load and short stride. Consistently made contact with a fluid, line drive, gap-to-gap type swing. Short, uphill path with solid bat speed. Exit Velocity was 78 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.21 60.

3. Angel Figueroa, C/MIF, Bishop Knoll (IN), 2014
5-foot-8, 170-pound multi-positional player with solid tools. On the infield showed clean, smooth actions. Has soft hands with a quick, clean exchange. Throws with a short arm at 78 mph. From behind the dish showed solid catch and release skills with pop times in the 2.04-2.24 range with above average carry. At the plate he has an open stance with a leg kick trigger. Showed an above average hit tool driving the ball gap-to-gap on a line. Has a short swing with accelerated bat speed and excellent extension. Exit velocity was 76 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.39 60.

4. Ryan Haff, MIF, Hinsdale Central, 2014
Strong build, 5-foot-11, 170-pound middle infielder, highly athletic. Offensively hits from the right side, slightly open stance, short stride. Advanced bat speed, 92 mph exit velocity, solid approach, works the middle of the field, line drive hitter. Strong hitter makes solid contact. 7.07 runner in the 60. Defensively showed a strong arm across the diamond (81 mph). Long arm action, high ¾ slot, showed effort, some accuracy. Overall athleticism is high, feet work well and athletically.

5. AJ Sanchez, RHP/SS, Richards, 2014
5-foot-10, 155-pound two way player. On the mound he has a drop and drive delivery with smooth rhythm. Arm works short and quick from a high ¾ slot with strong acceleration. Showed feel for four pitches. Fastball sat 81-82 mph, touching 83 mph, with sink and run action. Throws a firm slider with late break and depth, sitting 72-74 mph. Throws a curveball that’s distinctly different from his slider. The curveball has 11/5 tilt and comes in at 63-65 mph. The changeup comes from a slightly different arm slot at 69-70 mph with flashes of quality sinking action. As an infielder he throws with the same arm action at 76 mph. Displayed soft hands with clean exchanges. Movements were athletic and fluid. Ran a 7.09 60. At the plate uses an open stance and a long stride. Maintains balance with a short swing and solid bat speed. Exit velocity was 77 mph off a tee.

6. Dominic Cuevas, MIF, Warren, 2014
6-foot, 175-pound infielder with foot speed, projectable frame. Ran a 7.01 60. Defensively, his athletic foot speed translates well, showing quality actions with clean hands and feet. Throws with a short arm at 80 mph, displays carry and accuracy. At the plate he has a balanced setup. Repeats his swing and showed above average bat speed. Exit velocity was 84 mph off a tee.

7. Tyler Lewan, SS/RHP. Dundee-Crown, 2014
6-foot-2, 180-pound, athletic two way player with a solid hit tool. At the plate has a balanced stance with a leg kick trigger and long stride. Showed excellent bat speed, consistently made strong contact with aggressive barrel whip. Exit velocity was 82 mph. Defensively showed athletic actions and fluid movements. Throws with solid arm strength and accuracy at 81 mph. Ran a 7.52 60. On the mound He throws from a ¾ slot with quick arm speed and a short, loose arm action. Fastball was 77-80 mph with run. Throws a curveball at 67-68 mph with short break. Throws a changeup with fastball arm speed, for strikes, at 70-73 mph with arm side run.

8. Matt Baldwin, MIF, Nazareth, 2014
5-foot-10, 175-pound strong body infielder. Defensively showed athletic movements and solid hands. Throws from a high ¾ slot, loose arm, gets solid carry and accuracy at 75 mph. At the plate has a wide stance, slightly opened and crouched. Uses short stride and stays balanced. Has an uphill bat path. Exit velocity was 78 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.45 60.

9. Jeremy Schoessling, MIF, Batavia, 2014
6-foot-1, 170-pound lanky infielder. Ran a 7.27 60. At the plate has a tall, narrow stance and a long stride and quality balance. Swing is a line drive type with fluid rhythm. Exit velocity was 80 mph off a tee. Defensively, showed clean actions and throws with accuracy. Arm is long, from a ¾ slot at 75 mph.

10. Danny Kelly, MIF, Loyola, 2014
5-foot-11, 165-pound infielder. Defensively throws with a short, loose arm from a high ¾ slot with some carry and accuracy at 77 mph. Displayed soft hands and solid actions working through the ball. At the plate has a balanced stance with a heel lift load launch mechanism. Swing is fluid with an uphill path. Middle of the field approach with an exit velocity of 86 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.41 60.

Best of the Rest (Listed Alphabetically)

Nick Balkenbusch, SS, Highland, 2014
5-foot-9, 160-pound strong, multi-positional player. Defensively showed athletic actions with solid hands. Throws with a long arm from a high ¾ slot at 76 mph with some carry. At the plate has a balanced stance, smooth load, and short stride. Demonstrated the ability to repeat his swing. Exit velocity was 78 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.36 60.

Jack Ciombor, MIF, St. Francis-Wheaton, 2014
5-foot-11, 160-pound infielder, slender build. Defensively he throws with a long arm from a high ¾ slot with accuracy and carry at 80 mph. Showed quick feet and solid hands. At the plate has a balanced stance with a leg kick trigger and long stride. Creates some barrel whip and solid bat speed. Exit velocity was 83 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.69 60.

Grant Cooper, INF/OF/RHP, Lincoln, 2014
6-foot-2, 170-pound two way player. Defensively, throws with a long, stiff arm from a high ¾ slot. From the outfield he threw 76 mph. From the infield he threw 72 mph. At the plate he has a balanced stance and a short stride. Has a long, slightly uphill bat path. Exit velocity was 83 mph off a tee. On the mound he throws from a high ¾ slot with a simple delivery and short stride. Fastball was straight at 71-72 mph, flashing 74 mph once. Curveball was 57-59 mph. Ran a 7.37 60.

Matthew Esquivel, MIF, Romeoville, 2014
5-foot-11, 140-pound wiry infielder. Defensively showed solid actions. Arm works clean and was 70 mph across the diamond with accuracy. At the plate has a balanced stance, smooth load, and short stride. Bat path is level with quality extension and solid bat speed. Exit velocity was 79 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.44 60.

Devin Howard, C/INF, Seton Academy, 2014
5-foot-9, 170-pound multi-positional player. Behind the dish showed quick hands and feet. Throws with a short arm from over the top at 68 mph. Pop times were in the 2.17-2.29 range. From the infield he showed clean actions with the same throwing motion. Threw it 78 mph across the diamond. At the plate has a wide, balanced stance, and short stride. Had above average bat speed and exit velocity of 78 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.32 60.

Jared Johnson, MIF, DeKalb, 2014
5-foot-9, 140-pound wiry infielder. On the infield showed soft hands. Throws with a short arm, from a high ¾ slot at 71 mph. At the plate has a tall, open stance with leg kick trigger. Has short swing with and exit velocity of 76 mph. Ran a 7.47 60.

Douglas Murphey, MIF/RHP, Grant, 2014
5-foot-9, 170-pound two way player. Defensively throws with a long arm from a ¾ slot at 76 mph with accuracy. Showed quick feet with a long exchange. At the plate has a tall, open stance with short stride. Has a slap type swing with an uphill path. Off a tee exit velocity was 76 mph. Ran a 7.68 60. On the mound throws from a high ¾ slot, short arm action. Fastball sat 75 -76 mph. Curveball was 66-69 mph. Changeup was 67-71 mph.

Chris Perry, MIF, Normal, 2014
6-foot, 180-pound left hand hitting infielder. At the plate he has a balanced stance and short stride. Bat path is slightly uphill. Exit velocity was 77 mph off a tee. Defensively, showed firm hands. Throws from over the top with a long arm and some accuracy at 75 mph. Ran a 7.44 60.

Garrett Potts, SS/OF, Maldenn (MO), 2014
5-foot-10, 170-pound multi-positional player. Arm works well from the infield and the outfield. Clean and neat on the backside with acceleration to it. Was 79 mph from the outfield and 75 mph on the infield. Took clean lines to the ball as an outfielder. Showed athletic footwork on ground balls. At the plate has an open stance with a leg kick trigger. Swing is on an uphill path with solid bat speed. Exit velocity was 79 mph off a tee. Ran a 7.44 60.

Brandon Rojas, MIF, Plainfield North, 2014
5-foot-9, 150-pound middle infielder. Defensively showed a clean glove hand, feet worked well, above average range. Arm action is long across the diamond, 68 mph arm strength across the diamond. Runs a 7.27 60. Offensively hits from a slightly open stance, tall setup, short stride. Solid balance through contact. Flat bat path, 76 mph exit velocity from the tee.

Andres Tapia, MIF, De La Salle, 2014
5-6, 135-pound thin infielder. At the plate has a tall, balanced setup, smooth loading action, and a short stride. Has a repeatable line drive type swing with short, flat bat path, above average bat speed and quality rhythm. Exit velocity was 75 mph off a tee. In the field showed soft hands with quality actions. Throws from over-the-top at 69 mph. Ran a 7.61 60.

Miguel Villarreal, SS, Hall, 2014
6-foot, 185-pound infielder. Ran a 7.26 60. Defensively, showed solid hands and clean actions. Throws with a long, loose arm from a ¾ slot at 78 mph with solid accuracy. Offensively he uses a wide stance with a leg kick trigger and long stride. Swing has violence in it with an uphill path a solid bat speed. Exit velocity was 81 mph off a tee.

Danny Wilk, MIF, Downers Grove North, 2014
5-foot-7, 170-pound strong body infielder. At the plate has a balanced stance with a toe tap load and launch and quality balance throughout the swing. Showed solid bat speed with an exit velocity of 80 mph off a tee. In the infield he throws from over-the-top with a stiff arm action at 71 mph. Ran an 8.02 60.

Rhett Wojkovich, OF/SS, Montini Catholic, 2014
5-foot-10, 155-pound switch hitting, multi positional player. Showed outstanding foot speed running a 6.72 60. From the outfield throws with long arm from over the top with accuracy and carry at 78 mph. On the infield showed quality hands and athletic footwork playing through the ball. Throws 72 mph across the diamond. Hitting from the left and right sides he uses the same wide, balanced stance with a short stride. Has a slightly uphill bat path with above average bat speed.  Exit velocity as a LHH was 77 mph. As a RHH was 78 mph.

Tyler Zunkel, MIF, Willowbrook, 2014
Slender build, 5-foot-10, 155-pound middle infielder. Defensively uses a long arm action across the diamond, producing 78 mph velocities to his target. Over the top slot, occasional carry, fundamental footwork. Offensively hits from the right side, slightly open stance, short stride. Flat path, occasionally uphill, 79 mph exit velocity from the tee.

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