MN Underclass Prospect Games: Infield Analysis



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By Rob Allison
Prep Baseball Report Minnesota

The Prep Baseball Report Minnesota's Underclass Prospect Games took place on July 1st, 2015 at Seibert Field on the campus of the University of Minnesota. The showcase featured prospects from the 2017 and 2018 class who showcased their talents in front of our scouting staff, college coaches, and professional scouts.

Today we unveil our position by position analysis with infielders. When we create this list we evaluate the overall package of abilities along with future projection at the college level.

The top infield prospect at this year's MN Underclass Prospect Games is Prior Lake's Jacob Hitz. Hitz shows athleticism, a feel for the position, and ability to make plays with good carry across the infield on throws. Also has strength in the bat and should continue to develop into a solid hitter at the college level.

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Top infield Prospects

1. Jacob Hitz, SS, Prior Lake, 2017
6-foot-1, 175-pound right-handed hitting shortstop. Strong build with athleticism. High hands. Long path to contact. Leans back at contact. Strength in hands. Loft power to pull side. Middle/pull approach. 81 mph exit velocity off tee. Quiet-loose actions in field. Shows ability to cover ground and has above average glove. Clean arm action with short release. Plus carry across the diamond with accuracy. 77 mph arm strength. Hitz’s performance earned him an invitation to the PBR Future Games; since gaining considerable interest from various colleges.

2. Ronnie Sweeny, 1B, Woodbury, 2017
6-foot-2, 195-pound left-handed hitting first baseman. Pre-loaded hand position. Strong lower half in swing. Uses hands well to contact. Shows pop in bat with middle/pull approach. One of better hitters in 2017 class. Strong strike zone discipline. 77 mph exit velocity off tee. Solid fielder. Makes routine plays at first base. Good target at bag. Needs to improve on footwork around bag; receiving throws. Average arm with accuracy. 74 mph arm strength.

3. Tyler Fietek, 3B, Lakeville North, 2017
6-foot-2, 190-pound right-handed hitting player with versatility. Aggressive load and stride. Shows power with middle/pull approach. Drives through ball at contact. 90 mph exit velocity off tee. Shows solid actions and accuracy across the diamond with average range. 82 mph arm strength across. Physical player with upside at corner position with middle-of-order bat.

4. Dylan Criquet-Danielson, SS, Marshall, 2017
6-foot-2, 175-pound right-handed hitting shortstop. Above average frame. Projectable body. Small leg kick trigger. Stiff lower half. Shows good hand/eye coordination in swing with ability to hit line-drives to gaps. 80 mph exit velocity off tee. Above average actions in field. Shows fluidity and soft hands. Short release on throws. Lacks arm strength. Has plus accuracy to bag. 72 mph arm strength. Will need to improve arm strength to stay on left-side of infield. Shows ability with bat and athleticism to also play outfield. High Follow in 2017 class.

5. Max Meyer, SS/RHP, Woodbury, 2017
5-foot-11, 160-pound left-handed hitting 2-way player. High hands. Works down and through ball. Deep load effects timing occasionally. Lower half works in swing. Projectable hitting tools with added maturity/strength. 78 mph exit velocity. Above average feet and hands. Low slot with quick release. Solid actions in middle infield. 80 mph arm strength across diamond. Good athlete on mound. Pause in delivery. Hides ball well. Creates deception. Throws strikes for days. Fastball is 80-83 mph and repeats to glove side extremely well. Breaking ball has 11/5 shape with sweeping action to plate at 70-73 mph. Maintains arm speed and throws above average changeup at 73-74 mph with good fade.

6. Griffin Lanoue, RHP/SS, Rosemount, 2017
6-foot-3, 170-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. Lean, loose, athletic body. Explosive delivery to plate with moderate effort. Good arm speed. Hear seams cutting air to plate. Hard downhill plane on lively fastball at 83-85 mph. 12/6 breaking ball with sharp late break for strikes. Changeup is firm and heavy in zone. Athletic player who projects to be one of better arms in 2017 class. Creates bat speed. Over active load effects timing. Middle/pull approach with solid contact and flashes of power to gaps. 88 mph exit velocity. Good athlete in field with ability to cover ground. Glove is average. Long release with clean arm action and accuracy to bag. Above avg. arm strength at 86 mph across infield.

7. Nathan Berg, SS/RHP, New Prague, 2018
6-foot, 155-pound switch-hitting 2-way player. Leg kick load. Good hand path. Works direct/down/and through baseball at contact. Uses whole field with above average contact and line drive approach. 83 mph exit velocity. Shows above average feet, hands, and actions. Arm action is long and loose with solid accuracy across diamond. 75 mph arm strength from shortstop. Short clean arm action with flexible-loose body. Flat fastball that was elevated at times at 77-81 mph. 11/5 breaking ball with solid shape and depth. Changeup had above average fade and stayed in bottom of zone. Ability to play catch and showed plus command of 3 pitches to glove side of plate.

8. Max Gamm, SS, East Ridge, 2017
5-foot-10, 140-pound right-handed hitting middle infielder. Lean build. Uses lower half and takes hands to baseball well. Short swing. Solid line-drive plane with gap to gap approach. 80 mph exit velocity off tee. Shows above average actions in field. Loose body. Long release at times effects accuracy. Overall game will improve with maturity/strength. 76 mph arm strength across diamond.

9. Matt Brooks, SS/RHP, Benilde St. Margaret’s, 2017
6-foot-2, 185-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. Quick hands. Creates bat speed. Needs to improve lower half in swing. Solid contact with middle/away approach. 84 mph exit velocity. ¾ slot with average arm action. Accurate throws. Will sit on balls occasionally. Solid actions overall. 78 mph arm strength across. Crouched delivery at balance point. Creates good arm speed. Stiff lower half in delivery. Fastball shows 2-seam life and commands inner half of plate well. Fastball was 81-83; touching 85 mph. Curveball was inconsistent with loose spin at 64-67 mph. Changeup thrown with solid arm speed with plus action as pitch bottoms out at the plate- 66-68 mph. Steadily gaining velocity and will be solid follow into junior season.

10. TJ Truso, SS/RHP, Holy Family Catholic, 2018
5-foot-9, 155-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. Pre-loaded hands. Strides to contact. Stays inside ball well. Middle/away approach with line drive swing plane and solid contact. 79 mph exit velocity off tee. Average actions in field. Glove is solid. Clean exchanges. Arm action is clean. Release is long at times. 68 mph arm strength across infield. Simple tuck and turn delivery. Plus command of 3 pitches- consistent quality strikes. Feel for all pitches. Fastball has occasional cut action at 77-80 mph. Curveball has 11/5 shape with tight rotation. Good arm speed on changeup with downhill action and above average feel. High follow in 2018 class.

BEST OF THE REST (LISTED ALPHABETICALLY)

Jackson Baird, SS, Providence Academy, 2017
5-foot-9, 145-pound right-handed hitting shortstop. Aggressive line-drive swing plane. Strides out to swing. Leans back into contact. Solid contact with gap to gap approach and average pop in bat. 80 mph exit velocity off tee. Quick feet with above average glove in field. Throws show average carry and solid accuracy to bag at 75 mph.

Reed Collins, 3B, Farmington, 2017
6-foot, 175-pound right-handed hitting third baseman. Open stance. Good direction to contact. Shows good path to ball and balance in swing. Solid hand/eye to ball. Middle/pull approach with solid contact to middle of field. 79 mph exit velocity off tee. Sits on balls to field. Average actions. Glove is solid. Needs to improve accuracy and arm strength to stay at third base. 68 mph arm strength. Has projectable hitting tools.

Dawson Degnan, C/3B/RHP, Cretin-Derham Hall, 2017
6-foot, 170-pound left-handed hitting catcher/utility player. Quiet actions at plate. Length in load. Good bat path to ball. Works gaps well in approach. Solid contact with average power. 83 mph exit velocity off tee. Soft hands and receives well behind plate. Average blocker. 70 mph arm strength with 2.19 pop times. Solid/average actions at third base. Ability to make routine plays. Accurate arm with good carry to bag. 77 mph arm strength across. Solid athlete on mound. Fastball has cutting action at 71-74 mph. Curveball has 12/6 shape with varying rotation speed thrown in bottom of zone. Changeup has wobbly action for strikes.

Luke DeGrammont, 1B/LHP, Lakeville North, 2017
5-foot-10, 170-pound left-handed hitting 2-way player. Line drive swing plane. Uses hands well in swing. Tight lower half. Middle/pull approach. Average pop in bat. Solid contact. 89 mph exit velocity. Soft glove. Good direction with feet. Solid around bag. Arm is clean and makes accurate throws at 72 mph across infield. Up tempo delivery. Good body control. Short arm circle. Fastball shows cut action in bottom of zone at 71-75 mph. 12/6 breaking ball with solid shape and average depth on break. Changeup shows good action and fade at bottom of zone at 70-71 mph.

Danny Deis, SS/RHP, Wayzata, 2017
5-foot-10, 160-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. Inverted C load. Solid bat path back to contact. Average bat speed. Gap to gap approach. 75 mph exit velocity off tee. Short clean arm action in OF with average carry and solid accuracy. Throws are online at 81 mph. Solid actions and arm strength in middle infield. Ability to make plays. Throws are accurate to bag with 81 mph arm strength. Short arm action on mound. Strikes with 3 pitches. Position player with ability to repeat mechanics on mound and play catch with glove. Fastball was 74-77 mph. 12/6 breaking ball at 63-66 mph. Changeup had solid fade with late sink in bottom of zone at 65-66 mph.

Nicholas Dinkel, SS, St. Michael-Albertville, 2017
5-foot-10, 135-pound right-handed hitting middle infielder. Tall set-up. Slight arm bar. Length to contact. Needs additional strength. Middle of field approach with solid contact. 73 mph exit velocity. Average actions and glove in field. Has quick feet and solid range. Average accuracy across the diamond at 71 mph.

RJ Galvez, SS, Cretin-Derham Hall, 2018
5-foot-10, 150-pound switch-hitting shortstop. Leg kick load. Uses lower half well. Leans back at contact occasionally. Produces hard ground balls and line drives. Uses whole field. Average pop in bat. 72 mph exit velocity. Shows solid actions in field. Ok accuracy with below average carry. 70 mph arm strength.

Nolan Glunz, SS/RHP, Woodbury, 2017
6-foot, 180-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. Open stance with active trigger to swing. Lunges to contact. Low hand launch position with line-drive swing plane. Average pop in bat with middle/pull approach. 74 mph exit velocity off tee. Solid feet and glove. Works down to up. Low slot with short arm action on throws. 72 mph arm strength. Throws have accuracy to bag. Aggressive leg kick. Long stride. Limited arm extension to plate. Throws fastball for strikes with flat action at 73-79 mph. Curveball has 12/6 break with solid rotation at 64-67 mph. Changeup has solid fade with average arm speed at 63-65 mph.

Bjorn Hanson, 2B, Sauk Rapids-Rice, 2017
5-foot-11, 170-pound left-handed hitting second baseman. Deep body load. Reaches at contact. Loses power in swing. Gap to gap approach. 79 mph exit velocity. Solid glove with above average range. Lacks arm strength. Short arm action with release from ear. 63 mph arm strength with accuracy to bag.

Zack Henderson, RHP/2B, Shakopee, 2017
5-foot-8, 155-pound left-handed hitting 2-way player. High leg kick. Strides across. Cuts off hips. Arm is clean with pause in back. Fastball has cutting action at 77-79 mph. Curveball has 11/5 shape with solid depth and flashes of sharp break at 70-73 mph. Keeps changeup in bottom of zone with solid arm speed at 72-74 mph. No stride. Deep load. Arm bar. Long path to contact. Leans back at contact. Solid contact. Pull approach. 82 mph exit velocity off tee. Solid actions in field. Shows average arm with accuracy to bag. Has ok athleticism with ability to make routine plays. 77 mph arm strength.

Nick James, 3B, Edina, 2018
6-foot-2, 185-pound right-handed hitting third baseman. Hands out/away from body. Indirect path to ball. Works to use hands in swing. Clears lower half well. Middle/pull approach with solid contact. 83 mph exit velocity off tee. Wide base. Average glove. Heavy feet. Throws show accuracy and are online with below average arm strength at 61 mph.

Evan Krhin, 3B, Park, 2017
6-foot, 210-pound right-handed hitting third baseman. Crouched stance. Active load. Low hand slot to contact. Middle/away approach. Average power. Solid contact to middle of field. 76 mph exit velocity. OT slot. Throws downhill to bag. Average carry. Solid accuracy. Plays up to down on ground balls. Average actions. 71 mph arm strength across infield.

Will Oberg, 3B, Wayzata, 2017
6-foot-1, 212-pound right-handed hitting third baseman. High hands with open stance. Inverted swing plane. Solid contact. Shows above average pop in bat to gaps. 84 mph exit velocity. Physical body. Average athleticism. Soft glove. Solid accuracy across diamond with slight tail on throws. 74 mph arm strength across.

Sam Peterson, 2B, Aitkin, 2017
6-foot, 195-pound right-handed hitting infielder. No stride approach. Pushes hands to contact. Uphill swing plane. Makes solid contact to middle of field. Flashes pop to oppo gap. 71 mph exit velocity off tee. Short ½ pie arm action. 65 mph arm strength. Glove is solid and average athleticism in field. Throws are accurate to bag. Will improve with added arm strength.

Jack Schechtman, 1B, Minnetonka, 2017
6-foot-1, 175-pound right-handed hitting infielder. Low hand slot. Long stride. Aggressive swing. Stays on ball well. Active load to trigger. Flashes pop in bat with middle/pull approach. 78 mph exit velocity off tee. Average glove and feet at first base. Short release from low slot. Average accuracy on throws. 72 mph arm strength.

Spencer Smith, 1B/RHP, Blaine, 2017
6-foot-4, 185-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. Average base. Needs to use lower half more in swing. Rotation/spin bat plane. Pull approach. Average contact. 77 mph exit velocity off tee. Good target. Needs improved footwork around bag. Shows ability to field and make routine plays. Arm is accurate at 69 mph.  Drop and drive mechanics. Fastball was elevated and straight at 68-72 mph. 11/5 breaking ball with gradual break. Changeup thrown with solid arm speed; left short of plate. Split showed wobbly action at 61-62 mph.

Davis Solfelt, SS/RHP, Southwest Christian, 2018
6-foot-2, 155-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. Stands up in swing. Loses lower half power. Inside/out swing plane. Uses whole field. Line drive contact with 70 mph exit velocity off tee. Average actions in field with long release on throws. Throws are accurate across diamond at 68 mph. Tall balance point with high leg kick. Falls out/over front side in stride. Fastball was straight at 71-73 mph with solid command. Drops arm slot on breaking ball; loose rotation with 10/4 shape at 60-65 mph. Throws an average changeup for strikes.

Austin Strantz, SS, Park, 2017
5-foot-6, 135-pound right-handed hitting shortstop. Aggressive swing. Uses lower half. Needs additional strength. Barrels ball with good hands at plate. Line drive swing with solid contact and middle/pull approach. 77 mph exit velocity. Shows above average actions and plays with energy. Glove is soft and exchanges are clean. Solid accuracy across diamond at 75 mph.

TJ Truso, SS/RHP, Holy Family Catholic, 2018
5-foot-9, 155-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. Pre-loaded hands. Strides to contact. Stays inside ball well. Middle/away approach with line drive swing plane and solid contact. 79 mph exit velocity off tee. Average actions in field. Glove is solid. Clean exchanges. Arm action is clean. Release is long at times. 68 mph arm strength across infield. Simple tuck and turn delivery. Plus command of 3 pitches- consistent quality strikes. Feel for all pitches. Fastball has occasional cut action at 77-80 mph. Curveball has 11/5 shape with tight rotation. Good arm speed on changeup with downhill action and above average feel. High follow in 2018 class.

Tyler Young, C/IF, Wayzata, 2017
6-foot-2, 185-pound left-handed hitting catcher/infielder. Good frame. Low hand slot. Top spins baseball. Average/solid contact. Gap to gap approach. 71 mph exit velocity off tee. Ok flexibility. Solid receiver. Keeps balls in center of body. Length to exchange. Release is quick. 2.12 pop time with 69 mph arm strength. Shows average/solid actions in field. Long arm action. Clean. Usable feet and hands. 73 mph arm strength.

 

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