MN Underclass Showcase: Top Overall Prospects



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By Rob Allison
Minnesota State Director 

Prep Baseball Report Minnesota held the MN Underclass Showcase in Blaine, MN  at the National Sports Center on October 18th, 2014.  The event was for 2016-2018 graduates with Minnesota players representing all areas of the state. In our coverage we have broken down the prospects by their respective position.

Interested in attending a PBR Minnesota event? Check out our schedule by clicking here.

For now, please take a look at the statistical results from the event by clicking here.

mn underclass showcase - TOP OVERALL PROSPECTS

1. Steven Fitzsimmons, OF, Robbinsdale Cooper, 2016
5-foot-11, 170-pound outfielder. Lean projectable body with chance to add strength. Average runner with 7.18 60 time. Very aggressive at plate. Looks to drive ball with authority. Middle- pull approach. Front foot trigger and load need to be cleaned up but gets barrel to baseball consistently. Ball jumps off bat at contact. 74 mph exit velocity. Fluid defender. Looks like a college outfielder right now. Great actions for 2016 grad. Arm works clean and is very fast- velocity will increase with maturity. 81 mph throws from outfield. Very good game player. Has shown ability to compete versus upper echelon pitching. Very High Follow going into the spring.

2. Jordan Ammons, SS, Cretin-Derham Hall, 2016
6-foot-4, 200-pound shortstop. 7.00 60 time. Projectable long body with room to add weight. Present wiry strength in frame. Right-handed hitter with tall athletic stance. Creates great leverage down and through baseball. Hand-eye coordination is excellent. Consistently squares baseball creating back-spin with gap to gap approach. Linear lower half with good direction and transfers weight well through contact with long finish. 81 mph exit velocity. Above average actions in field. Covers ground well laterally. Feet are light for bigger player and hands are soft. Exchanges are crisp and clean. Moves with fluidity. Shows plus actions on body control plays. Has ability to slow game down in middle infield. Arm was at 75% due to slight strain effecting arm slot and velocity. Has been given a clean bill of health. Now fully recovered. One of the top prospects in Minnesota for 2016 class.

3. Jack Kuzma, SS, Minnetonka, 2016
6-foot-1, 160-pound shortstop. 7.31 60 time. Long rangy athletic body. Lacks strength right now but has room to grow and add strength. Balanced set-up at plate. Load is short with rhythm. Direct to contact with flat line drive swing plane. Collapses at contact. Loses leverage. Simple mechanical adjustments will allow him to drive ball better to gaps with backspin. 75 mph exit velocity off tee. Very light on his feet in field. Great hands with plus actions. Can make adjustments easily on groundballs. Quick release across infield. Follows throws. Accurate with carry. 74 mph across diamond. High Follow in 2016 class.

4. Connor Stroh, RHP, Lakeville South, 2016
6-foot-2, 150-pound right-handed pitcher. Projectable pitchers body with longer legs and wide shoulders. Room to mature physically. Arm is clean. Loose arm action- ball jumps on hitter. ¾ arm slot. Good rhythm and sequence with hands and lower half. Travels across rubber in wind-up causing delivery to be across body and closed. Limits some hip explosion and extension to plate. Fastball shows late sink to both sides of plate at 81-82 mph. Throws breaking ball with 10/4 shape and power action. Pitch has hard late break in zone. Quality feel for changeup with late arm-side fade. Ability to show in zone and take away from hitter. At times will be on side of breaking balls causing flat spin. Overall very projectable right-handed pitcher. Shows ability to throw strikes. Arm is loose and fastball has life. High Follow for 2016 class.

5. Tyler Reichenborn, OF, Blaine, 2016
6-foot, 180-pound outfielder. Physical player with projectable pro body. Long legs with wide shoulders and present strength.  6.82 60 time. Hits from wide base with minimal movement.  Still is able to drive baseball with above average strength. Line drive swing plane with solid contact to gaps. 87 mph exit velocity. Shows good outfield actions with appropriate routes and angles on balls. Arm works from over-the-top slot. 80 mph from outfield. Explosive at times. Profiles as physical athletic right fielder at college level. With continued development will be High Follow for college teams heading into the spring.

6. Jacob Raether, LHP, Minnetonka, 2016
6-foot-3, 170-pound left-handed pitcher. Tall athletic body. Long legs. Projects well and will be able to continue to add positive weight and strength. Shows good rhythm on mound. Upper and lower half sequence well in delivery. Slightly crouched posture at balance point. Has good direction to plate. Arm works well from high ¾ slot. Arm action starts long and begins to shorten upon release. Ball comes out of hand clean and easy. Fastball is downhill for strikes at 77-79 mph. Breaking ball has 1/7 shape with tight rotation and late cutting action. Shows some effort with changeup and arm tends to slow. Pitch has good ASR and is thrown for strikes. Overall has arm speed, delivery is loose and easy, and projects to develop physically. Quality High Follow for 2016 class.

7. Patrick Huisman, 3B, Ely Memorial, 2016
5-foot-10, 170-pound third baseman. Patrick continues to make strides in his game. Throwing velocity increased 8 mph from previous event in August. Body is progressing and beginning to fill out. Shows good actions in field. Hands work well. Light on feet and has good actions on body control plays making 3B a good fit. Very aggressive with bat. Shoulders stay square with pitcher; delivers power efficiently through contact with solid gap to gap power. 85 mph exit velocity. Excited to see his continued development through high school.

8. Brady Mehl, RHP, Wayzata, 2016
6-foot-7, 185-pound right-handed pitcher. Tall projectable body with present weight and strength in lower half. Will continue to add positive weight and be very physical on mound. Shows good coordination and body control for player his age and size. Good balance point and direction to plate. Extended separation and release of pitches from over-the-top slot. Lands on stiff front leg effecting weight transfer and power causing catapult action to plate. Fastball is downhill with slight sinking action for strikes. Curveball has gradual break with 12/6 spin. Shows ok feel for changeup. Thrown near fastball arm speed with fade for strikes. Overall needs some mechanical adjustments but has present ability, a feel for pitching, and projects well physically.

9. Joey Werner, OF Hastings, 2016
5-foot-8, 145-pound outfielder. Slight build with fast twitch athleticism. 7.07 60 time. Left-handed hitter who takes aggressive swings. Has strength from elbows to wrists. Load is long but able to get barrel to baseball. Line drive swing plane- ball jumps at contact. Stiff front leg limits weight shift through contact. 79 mph exit velocity. Good actions in outfield. Is clean and quick releasing ball. Arm is long and works well from ¾ slot. Has body momentum on throws. 84 mph velocity from outfield. Overall good package of skills. Very competitive player.

10. William Riach, RHP, Lakeville North, 2016
6-foot-2, 160-pound right-handed pitcher. Long lanky projectable body. Room to grow and continue to fill out. Works from far right-hand side of rubber. Creates different angle on hitter. Minimal effort in pitches. Comes out of hand easy. Shows ability to throw 3 pitches for strikes down in zone. Strides open; tends to miss arm side at times. Fastball shows occasional boring 2-seam life at 78-80 mph. Curveball and slider are similar in velocity and action. Thrown with 12/6 shape, has tight rotation, and sharp break at the end. Has above average feel for changeup. Looks very comfortable throwing for quality strikes. Near fastball arm speed with slight ASR. Has ability to pitch right now; minor mechanical adjustments and physical development should translate into velocity gains. Good Follow Prospect into spring and summer.

11. Nick Kamnikar, OF, Park Senior, 2017
5-foot-9, 135-pound outfielder.  Athletic well-proportioned body. Will really develop physically once he begins to mature. 7.06 60 time. Very good swing for player his age. Load is short with rhythm. Uses slight leg kick trigger into stride. Translates weight well to contact and through swing. Has quiet head and is balanced. 76 mph exit velocity. Continues to show well in the outfield. Moves to ball with ease. Shows soft hands on groundballs and has improved his use of lower half on throws. Arm works well and has arm speed. Good accuracy on throws. Very good overall ability for sophomore in high school.

12. Chris Larson, OF, LaCrescent, 2016
6-foot, 170-pound outfielder. Lean athletic build. Some wiry strength. 7.35 60. Simple hitting mechanics. Quiet actions. Able to repeat swing well. Does a good job of using hands in swing. Swing can be “controlled” at times. Would like to see him be more aggressive and let bat fly through zone. Continues to put clean quality swings on balls.  Moves well in outfield. Footwork on groundballs is very good. Showed low release on throws at times. Body actions are good. Has bounce to his step. With increased arm strength profiles as athletic right-fielder.

13. Levi Hinton, C, Cretin-Derham Hall, 2016 
6-foot, 185-pound catcher. Solid body with room to continue to add strength. 8.16 60 time. Right-handed hitter with open stance. Strides to square and has quality launch position before swing. Solid balance with consistent line drives and hard contact. Does have very active load which needs to be cleaned up but shows ability to hit. 78 mph exit velocity. Has good flexibility behind the plate with ability to receive and block. Softens baseball on blocks and keeps ball directly in front. Shows ability to catch and throw. Very accurate to second base with good feet and forward momentum to second base. 71 mph arm strength with 2.00-2.18 pop times.

14. Michael Gruber, SS/RHP, Minnewaska, 2016
6-foot-1, 165-pound 2-way player. Lanky player with room to mature physically. 7.56 60 time. Left-handed hitter with short load. Becomes disconnected occasionally adding length to swing. Uses leg kick trigger to swing. Barrel becomes inverted at times through zone. Has good hand-eye coordination and uses hands in swing well. 75 mph exit velocity. Shows above average actions in field. Hands are usable. Average range due to foot speed. Shows very athletic actions to his left with appropriate footwork and clean exchanges. Has hand speed on throws from over-the-top slot. Infield velocity of 78 mph. On the mound uses simple delivery. In wind-up travels across rubber, crouched posture in balance point and lands extremely closed to plate. Fastball shows cutting action at 78-80 mph. Flashes of quality breaking ball. 11/5 shape with late break. Ability to show pitch in zone and take away late. Wrist is stiff throwing changeup causing pitch to be up in zone at 67-69 mph.

15. Drake Durham, LHP, New Richmond(WI), 2016
6-foot-3, 200-pound left-handed pitcher. Projectable body with present strength and durability. Ultra high up to down delivery. Tends to swing front half open leaving pitches to arm side of plate. Ball jumps out of hand with downhill plane. Fastball shows good life at 80-83 mph. Curveball has 12/6 shape with late break in zone. Changeup is firm and is able to repeat in zone. Cutter is inconsistent around plate.  High energy on mound with average effort. Arm works well. Will have chance to continue to throw harder. Good follow in deep 2016 Wisconsin pitching class.

16. Wesley Sarsland, LHP, Belle Plaine, 2016
5-foot-11, 145-pound left-handed pitcher. Tall lanky body. Shows athleticism in body with flashes of quick twitch ability. Tall up to down balance point. Good direction to plate. Ball jumps out of hand with easy delivery and minimal effort. Hides baseball and creates some deception with front side. Fastball is downhill and pounds bottom of zone for strikes. Curveball is flat at times in upper half of zone. Slider shows 1/7 shape with late break and tight rotation. Changeup has slight fade for strikes. Overall has pitchability and loose athletic frame. Interesting follow with physical progression.

17. Austin Ver Steeg, RHP/3B, Minnewaska, 2016
6-foot-1, 175-pound 2-way player. Lean athletic frame. 6.91 60 time. Right-handed hitter who above average bat speed for his age. Medium length base. Loads into load slot. Uses leg kick trigger to swing. Minimal weight shift through swing with pull approach. Short to contact. Solid consistent contact. 83 mph exit velocity. Average actions in field. Fields up to down. Makes routine plays. Has arm speed from over-the-top slot. Accurate throws at 79 mph. On the mound throws with average effort. Crouched posture in balance point. Lands hard across body in delivery. Arm works well from over-the-top slot. Fastball is thrown for strikes with life- late cutting action for strikes at 79-82 mph. Curveball has late sharp break in the zone. Has good arm action on changeup with inconsistent release point. Overall is a good athlete with quick twitch actions who has chance to develop with increased reps and mechanical adjustments.

18. Nolan Friedrichs, 1B/RHP, Edina, 2016
6-foot-3, 210-pound 2-way player. 7.88 60 time. Extra-large durable frame. Left-handed hitter with medium width base for size. Starts open with easy load. Uses leg kick trigger to swing. Short to contact with good extension through baseball. Line drive swing plane and uses both sides of the field. 79 mph exit velocity. Defensively shows average actions at first base. Limited to position bases on foot speed. Makes routine plays and moves well around bag receiving throws. On the mound uses simple delivery. Good balance point and creates inline direction to plate. Two piece arm action from over-the-top slot. Fastball is downhill with late heavy action at 78-79 mph. Curveball has 12/6 shape with late hard break for strikes. Shows flashes of above average changeup with fade to bottom of strike zone. Head jerk effects command at times; tends to leave pitches up and to arm-side of plate.

19. Griffin Schneider, 1B/OF/RHP, Wayzata, 2016
6-foot-2, 185-pound utility player. Tall strong build. 7.1 60 time. Right-handed hitter with rotational load. Stays short to contact with limited length through zone. Strides closed effecting momentum through swing. Has good bat speed and strength. 85 mph exit velocity. Shows ok actions in outfield. Ability to field routine with good momentum and direction on throws. 81 mph outfield velocity. Easy actions at first base. Fields routine. Feet work well. Has ability to start double play. On the mound uses a simple controlled delivery. Front side swings open on stride to plate. Arm works loose and easy from mid ¾ slot. Fastball varies with cut and sink. Action is late in zone at 75-79 mph. Throws sweeping breaking ball with flashes of hard late break. Changeup is thrown at fastball arm speed with life and movement.

20. Travis Conoryea, 2B, Simley, 2016
5-foot-6, 160-pound second baseman. Travis continues to improve and makes strides as a baseball player. Ran a 7.47 60 at this event. Arm strength has improved 4 mph since last event he attended in August. Showed more lift and strength in swing. Stayed behind baseball at contact- drove through with strength. Is continuing to work on shortening load; but shows good hands and eye-coordination at plate. Plays with energy and keeps improving. Hands and feet allow him to make routine to above average plays. Not physically imposing but plays well in games and is competitive.

LISTED ALPHABETICALLY

Damian Austin, 2B, Washington Tech. Magnet, 2016
5-foot-9, 190-pound second baseman. 8.72 60 time. Right-handed hitter with minimal load and in-line stride into contact. Flat bat path with short finish. 66 mph exit velocity. Shows below average actions in field. Short arm action from ¾ slot producing 58 mph throws across diamond.

Jay Beckman, RHP, Mankato East, 2016
6-foot-2, 175-pound right-handed pitcher. Stronger durable frame. Strength in lower half. Higher leg kick in balance point. Collapses in delivery. Lands inline and open to plate. One piece arm action from ¾ slot. Fastball shows late sink in zone at 74-77 mph. Throws sweeping curveball for strikes with gradual break. Limited finish on changeup causing it to be flat in zone for strikes at 62-66 mph.

Aaron Bouillon, SS, New Life Academy, 2017
6-foot-2, 160-pound shortstop. Long rangy body with some present strength. 7.38 60 time. Right-handed hitter with quality set-up, square stance, and strides in-line with balance. Swing is uphill with negative momentum through contact. 78 mph exit velocity. Average actions in field. Does good job of working ground up for a bigger player. Throws flat-footed with lack of momentum. Two piece arm action from ¾ slot with limited carry. Infield velocity of 69 mph. Has interesting size and strength. Needs work mechanically.

Dawson Degnan, C, Cretin-Derham Hall, 2017
5-foot-11, 150-pound catcher. Degnan is long and lean left-handed hitting catcher. Ran a 7.53 60. Shows rhythm in load with a front heel turn trigger. Stays inline and square with pitcher. Gap to gap approach. Load can be long at times but is able to get barrel to baseball with solid contact. Exit velocity of 74 mph. Has flexibility behind the plate with ability to receive. Able to keep balls in zone. Shows aptitude for blocking. Needs minor mechanical adjustments. Feet and hands work well together. Release is long effecting pop times.  Has present ability and a chance to improve with physical development. Arm strength of 68 mph with pop times of 2.25-2.38.

Luke DeGrammont, 1B/LHP, Lakeville North, 2017
5-foot-9, 165-pound 2-way player. 7.94 60 time. Average sturdy build with thick lower half. Left-handed hitter with 76 mph exit velocity. Limited leverage in swing. Easy load and swing. Low hand set creates slight uphill swing plane at times. Appropriate weight shift and quiet head at contact with middle to pull approach. Soft hands and light on feet at first base. Fields with ease and has ability to slow game down. Makes above average plays. On the mound is controlled and balanced. Long arm circle. Arm works free and easy with minimal effort. Shows ability to repeat mechanics and throw strikes consistently. Fastball has slight ASR at 73-75 mph. Curveball has 12/6 shape; inconsistent command due to stride across body in delivery. Cutter is 64-66 mph with 1/7 shape, tighter rotation, and in zone more than curveball.

Brady Deslauriers, OF, Mankato East, 2016
5-foot-10, 150-pound outfielder. Average build with room for added strength. 7.12 60 time. Right-handed hitter with closed stance. Swing is very repeatable and consistent. Load can be active at times effecting timing. Short to contact with rotational lower half. Quick hands with line drive swing plane. 69 mph exit velocity. Shows good actions in outfield. Quick to ball with appropriate angles. Aggressive confident fielder. Minimal use of front side on throws causing mid ¾ arm slot and tailing action on throws. 79 mph from outfield.

Michael Feneis, OF/RHP, Centennial, 2016
5-foot-11, 175-pound 2-way player. Good build with present strength. 7.66 60 time. Right-handed hitter with simple load and short stride. Bat is quick to contact with line drive swing plane. Stays inside baseball well. 75 mph exit velocity. Shows ok actions in outfield. Is aggressive to ball with quick exchanges on throws. Shoulder tilt effects accuracy and velocity. 74 mph velocity from outfield. Balanced delivery with rhythm and athletic actions. Tended to over throw in this session effecting velocity and command of secondary pitches. Arm works well from over-the-top slot. Fastball was straight and up in zone. Curveball showed average break at 57-61 mph. Changeup was best secondary pitch. Thrown near fastball arm speed- down in zone for strikes.

Dylan Findlay, 2B, Mankato East, 2016
5-foot-7, 165-pound second baseman. 7.13 60 time. Good build with present strength. Right-handed hitter with pre-set flat bat. Choppy rhythm in load and strides across body to contact. Has strength in flat line-drive swing plane. 80 mph exit velocity. Very active in field. Short quick strides to ball. Tends to field deep in stance but does work ground up. Follows throws across diamond with accuracy. Performs with quality effort. Infield velocity of 70 mph.

Zack Henderson, 2B, Shakopee, 2017
5-foot-8, 165-pound second baseman. 7.56 60 time. Left-handed hitter with short load. Minimal weight shift in load and no stride swing. Rotational swing through zone. Line drive swing plane and is short to contact with pull approach. 73 mph exit velocity. Shows average actions in field. Tends to field flat footed. Able to make routine plays and shows ability turning double play. Throws from low ¾ slot across infield with velocity of 75 mph. 

Evan Krhin, 3B, Park Senior, 2017
6-foot, 210-pound third baseman. 7.44 60 time. Square thick build. Right-handed hitter with crouched stance and minimal stride. Rotational swing and lower half mechanics. Flat line drive swing plane with 74 mph exit velocity. Average athletic ability and actions on left side of infield. Makes routine plays. Works ground up with minimal momentum on throws. Throws from over-the-top arm slot producing an infield velocity of 62 mph.

Austin Strantz, SS/RHP, Park Senior, 2017
5-foot-6, 130-pound 2-way player. Small build. 7.53 60 time. Right-handed hitter with pre-set load and simple balanced leg kick trigger. 75 mph exit velocity off tee. Short to contact with flat line drive swing plane. Gap to gap approach with solid contact. Shows athletic actions in field. Able to make adjustments on groundballs. Performed with more confidence in this event. Uses momentum on throws. Accurate across diamond at 76 mph. On the mound throws 3 pitches for strikes. Inconsistent balance point. Rushes to plate. One piece arm action from over-the-top slot. Head jerk and average effort on release. Fastball has tilt to arm side of plate at 70-72 mph. Curveball has 12/6 shape with gradual break. Knuckleball has wobbly action and tends to float arm side.

Michael Tiede, SS/RHP, St. Cloud Apollo, 2016
6-foot-1, 160-pound 2-way player. Tall thin build. 7.5 60 time. Left-handed hitter with 74 mph exit velocity. Short load with rhythm. Strides in-line with leg kick trigger. Uses hands well in swing- stays inside baseball with middle of field approach. Short strides to ball in field. Usable hands and shows ability to make routine play. Tends to field flat footed. Moves better through ball on back-hand play. Arm stroke is clean; has accuracy on throws across diamond at 72 mph. On the mound get to good balance point. Drop and drive delivery to home. Deep stab at bottom on arm stroke with over-the-top slot. Fastball shows downward plane at 73-77 mph. Curveball is thrown with 12/6 shape and early gradual break for strikes. Slows arm down on changeup showing pitch early to hitter. Slider showed average break and was erratic around zone. Above average feel for fastball and curveball. Other secondary pitches work in progress.

Austin Vandewiele, RHP, Lakeville South, 2016
6-foot, 160-pound right-handed pitcher. Average build with strong lower half. Simple balanced delivery. Lands closed and across body. Arm starts long with hitch in action on backside. Has extension out front to the plate. 74-76 mph fastball shows late sink for strikes. Curveball has 12/6 shape with late break. Changeup is thrown near fastball arm speed for strikes with minimal movement. Tends to leave pitches arm side due to lower half mechanics in delivery. Hard worker who continues to develop and improve.

Ryan Venne, OF/RHP, Eau Claire(WI), 2018
5-foot-11, 155-pound 2-way player. Lean athletic player. 7.25 60 time. Tall stance with short stride and balance throughout swing. Load is long but bat path is clean and short to baseball. Short finish after contact. Good body control and efficient swing for 2018 grad. 76 mph exit velocity. Body moves well in outfield. Very projectable- interesting follow for next 3-4 years. Fields at times with two hands effecting balance and direction. Arm works well from over-the-top slot with carry and accuracy. 75 mph outfield velocity. Controlled delivery on mound. Shows balance in delivery. Tends to leak early from balance point. Arm works well from over-the-top slot. Fastball is straight and thrown for strikes at 73-75 mph.  Curveball has 11/5 shape with gradual break. Inconsistent arm action on changeup right now- pitch does show fade and is able to throw for strikes. Overall is a High Follow for 2018 class with present athletic ability.

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