Prep Baseball Report

Illinois 2024 Rankings: Update

By: Drew Locascio & Gavin Smith
Illinois Scouting Staff

After a busy fall that featured a number of PBRT tournaments and a handful of showcases, the Illinois 2024 rankings have been updated. Throughout the list there were modest updates with the Top-10 staying largely intact with a handful of prospects making noticeable jumps up the list after strong falls.


RHP Ryan Sloan (York; Wake Forest) and Tyler Bell (Lincoln-Way East; Kentucky) remain cemented at the top of the class after impressive showings at the PBR All-American Game in September. Both solidified their status as high-end National prospects at the event and should be closely followed before next year's MLB draft.

Read below to hear what Ian Smith had to say about the two at the All-American Game.

From 9/23/23: "RHP Ryan Solan (York HS, IL; Wake Forest): One of the most advanced arms in the 2024 class. Durable 6-foot-4, 220-pound frame that is going to continue to get stronger. Loose, longer arm action out of slight rocker step, Sloan gets downhill well with big extension and lower release point in a low three-quarters arm slot. Heavy mid-90s fastball that has been up to 97 with arm-side run and present plus command. Low-80s slider continues to improve with good tilt and sweep that plays well at the bottom of the zone, and will create swing-and-miss. Above-average changeup feel for a firm 85-88 mph offering that can get diabolical tumble at times. Innate feel to spin the fastball/slider (Avg. 2500+) while killing spin on the change. A distinct plan every time he takes the mound with premier stuff that only continues to get better. Strong early-rounds draft profile for the Wake Forest commit."

From 9/23/23: "SS Tyler Bell (Lincoln-Way East HS, IL; Kentucky): Starting in a slightly wide, open base, the natural switch-hitter utilizes a quiet, shoulder height pre-pitch load with a quick leg trigger. Short to the ball with a loose finish from both sides while creating loft with ease. Equally present bat-to-ball skills but boasts massive power potential from the left side. Plus bat speed with lean strength in the frame that continues to grow can allow Bell to carry a strong hit/power combo going forward. A true shortstop long-term with fluid actions in all directions and easy transfers. Plays confident and shows high, situational baseball IQ. Arm strength to make every play needed and can be accurate from multiple arm angles. 6.68 runner with a great first step and straight line speed. Showing the potential of a day one middle-infielder."

OF/ATH Cole Crafton (Lincoln-Way West; Louisville), a two-sport standout, who features one of the highest ceilings in the class, remains at No. 3 despite a football injury this fall.

No. 4 Jimmy Janicki (Downers Grove North; (Troy) and No. 5 Brendan Tunink (Newman Central Catholic; Notre Dame) each climbed a spot in this update. Janicki, also a football standout, is an everyday catcher at the next level and has the potential to be a middle of the order bat. Tunink continues to get better and add quality strength to his frame every time we get our eyes on him. He has a fluid left-handed swing built for elevated impactful contact and runs a 6.64 laser-timed 60.

INF Cooper Malamazian (Nazareth; Indiana), LHP/OF Brayden Mazzacano (Schaumburg; Illinois commit) and C/INF Collin Mowry (Lincoln-Way Central; Louisville) all remain in the Top-10 and should be strong pro follows moving forward.

RHP/INF Nate Harris (Yorkville; Kentucky) and OF Nate George (Minooka; Eastern Illinois) round out a strong top-10 in the state. Harris is a physical two-way prospect who has been turning heads on the mound as of late with a clean arm, low-90s fastball and improved curveball that plays with depth and in the low-80s. George is one of the top athletes in the class (6.39 60), has power in the bat and plays with a high motor.


Looking outside the top-10, RHP/CIF Eric DeCosta (Wheaton Academy; Cincinnati) and C/ATH Luke Landrus (St. Joseph-Ogden; Illinois) made some of the biggest jumps in the updated list.

No. 20 DeCosta climbed 25 spots after multiple strong showings on the mound this fall and recently committed to Cincinnati.

Landrus is up 20 spots to No. 21 in the state. Landrus has an athletic, loose frame that has added quality strength as of late and the bat has taken a big step forward as a result. Landrus was showing all kinds of twitch and bat speed this fall with feel for the barrel and developing gap-to-gap power. Defensively, he is athletic behind the plate and has the versatility, arm strength and athleticism to potentially profile in a number of defensive spots.

Another arm making a huge jump in this update is RHP Michael Furmanek (Plainfield East). The long-levered, uncommitted arm throws from a unique slot which allows him to all kinds of run and sink on his upper-80s, T90 mph fastball. The 6-foot-5, 175-pound senior who rose over 40 spots has the ability to chew through a lineup with his fastball alone but also features a sweeping slider that he is confident in. Now ranked No. 28 in the state.

LHP Tyler Ledvina (Lincoln-Way East; Heartland CC) made big strides this fall, jumping up nearly 100 slots as he now sits at No. 58 in the state’s 2024 class. The athletic, 6-foot, 170-pound southpaw is an easy mover down the mound. Working with a three-pitch mix, his fastball sat 85-88 mph while topping out at 89 mph. He showed swing-and-miss stuff with his slider and feel for a changeup that sat in the low-80s.

Another senior that’s on the rise is RHP Braden Grimm (Evanston; Minnesota State). Grimm jumped onto the scene this summer during his bullpen at the Northwest Suburban Open, earning an invite to the Illinois State Games in August. An athletic build with more to come, Grimm stands at 6-foot-1, 165-pounds. He’s shown his fastball up to 88 mph with feel to spin both a curveball (T2636 RPM) and a slider (T2538 RPM). After an impressive summer, Grimm is now ranked No. 92 in the state.

Another arm on the climb was recent John A. Logan commit, LHP Nathan Anderson (Lyons Township). Anderson, up 40 spots to No. 96 in the state, did his best work this fall in front of us at the Fall Championship at The Rock against a quality lineup. Anderson attacked hitters throughout, pounded the zone with a three-pitch mix, mid-80s fastball and struck out eight in three shutout innings. Anderson had conviction and feel of both his offspeed offerings throughout.

After impressive showings this summer and fall, RHP Tanner Spangler (Morton; Heartland CC) rose to No. 129 in the class. Spangler’s fastball sat in the mid-80s in our recent looks while spinning a breaking ball for strikes. He boasts an impressive 6-foot-5, 210-pound frame, and as he continues to improve his arsenal over the offseason, Spangler will look to be a name-to-know out of Central Illinois.