PBR Scout Day: The Performance Academy - Catcher Analysis

Brandon Hall
North Carolina Director of Scouting

Prep Baseball Report was on hand early last week to take in The Performance Academy Scout Day.  Close to 50 players ran through a modified pro-style workout that included a laser timed 60, defensive workout, offensive evaluation, and controlled bullpens for pitchers.  

The Performance Academy (TPA) runs several teams at the high school age levels, based out of Raleigh, NC.  Players are given a unique opportunity in the TPA system to collect measurables and train to continue to better their baseball performance and overall athletic prowess.  

The PBR Scout Day took place at the beautiful Ting Stadium in Holly Springs, NC.  Ting Stadium is home to Wake Tech CC in the spring and the Holly Springs Salamanders, of the Coastal Plains League, in the summer.  TPA is able to use Ting Stadium throughout the summer to train for on field execution, as well as improving overall athleticism of their players.


With several catchers taking part in the scout day, we will dive into three for in-depth analysis. One each from the 2019, 2020, and 2021 graduating classes. Each has some upside and presents an intriguing skill set that can be developed.

CLICK HERE for the complete roster from the TPA Scout Day with PBR

CLICK HERE for the complete statistical analysis from the TPA Scout Day with PBR


TPA Scout Day Quick Hitters:

+ 49 players from The Performance Academy teams worked out for PBR
+ 8 players ran sub 7.00 sixties with one at 6.50. In total, 20 players ran below 7.20
+ 12 players recorded an exit velocity of 85 or better with the leader at 89 mph

+ 11 pitchers threw bullpens. Top velo was 85 from a 2019 grad
+ 2 outfielders touched 89 on their positional throws with 7 of 16 working above 80 mph
+ 8 catchers worked out with 4 recording a pop time under 2.20.


TPA Scout Day - Catcher Analysis


Rodney Bonilla C / OF / Apex Friendship, NC / 2020

Average 5-foot-8, 170 pound frame.  Advanced accuracy behind the dish, putting throws on the bag with pop times ranging 2.14 - 2.19.  Positional velocity of 67 mph from the crouch with an ability to improve carry with increased arm strength.  Quick exchange across his chest works to a short high-¾ slot. Feet can get long, widening the base, but he tends to have good timing in the release.  Does recoil out of the base slightly at times. On the infield, direct routes with some bounce and rhythm in the feet. Presents hands out front, funneling the catch to the mid-section.  Hands tend to work from the right inside hip on the catch. Medium arm swing to a high-¾ release with accuracy. Right handed hitter is balanced and athletic in his setup. Short stride. Good balance.  Average bat speed, level through the zone, with a pull emphasis. Works for extension with some feel for the barrel. Exit velocity peaked at 87 mph. Ran a 7.70 sixty.


Brendan Burke C / 3B / Panther Creek, NC / 2021

Young player with strength and a thick lower half at 6-foot-1, 180 pounds.  Left handed hitter works with an aggressive stride from a balanced, open stance.  Leg kick sets his load and weight shift. Length in the swing, working for extension.  Strength over quickness with an average feel for the barrel. Advanced exit velocity of 88 mph for his age.  Behind the dish, the hips have bend and allow for a good target. Feet can be cautious allowing the hands to exchange around the waist-line to a short arm action and high-¾ slot with some accuracy and pop times ranging 2.18 - 2.33.  From the crouch, the velocity on throws peaked at 67 mph. Shows aptitude for blocking positions. Lacks burst out of blocking position, using his hands to recover and retrieve. Length in the exchange as the feet work to gain ground.  


Lane Rhodes C / OF / Fuquay Varina, NC / 2019


Lanky, athletic build with looseness at 6-foot-2, 175 pounds.   Plenty of room to continue to add strength. Quickness is present, running a 6.97 sixty.  Chance to play behind the plate and in the outfield defensively. Good bend through the hips and hands work with softness receiving, behind the dish.  Easy, fluid, quick exchanges, across the chest. Short arm action and high-¾ slot produce carry and accuracy. Pop times ranged 2.05 - 2.19 with a positional velocity of 73 mph out of the crouch.  In the outfield, works with athleticism through the ball. Fluid and loose, the arm shows accuracy and carry at 81 out of the hand. Right handed hitter, tall and athletic in his setup. Short stride, stays level, working for extension, with better than average bat speed.  Loose, stayed in the middle of the field with a feel for the barrel. Exit velocity peaked at 84 off the barrel.