Prep Baseball Report

Top 30 Middle Infielders in North Carolina

Brandon Hall
Executive Director, PBR of NC

The published rankings on Prep Baseball Report are always a big read for high school baseball fans across the country.  Here in North Carolina the updated rankings typically top the chart for most read stories of the year.  PBR’s team of scouts are constantly working to identify the top talent across their territory and as part of that process, publishing rankings, evaluations, and statistics.

The class rankings in North Carolina have been updated for 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023 graduates.  Inside the rankings database on PBR, fans can sort the rankings by positions.  While going through the rankings, North Carolina stats do not go position by position, but instead take a player grading policy and work through the player grades to sort players into the state rankings.  Positional rankings fall where they may, based on a player’s primary position in their PBR Profile.

Today we continue to unveil the top players in North Carolina by position.  Up next are the top catchers in the state.  This list of Top 25 Catchers in North Carolina does not account for a player’s graduating class.  The list is compiled by the player grades given to the catchers in the state and then scouts from PBR working through the sorted list to arrange players that may have similar player grades.


NC:  2020  |  2021  |  2022 2023

Overall:  2020  |  2021  |  2022 | 2023


Positional Rankings in North Carolina 


TOP 30 Middle Infielders IN NC


The class of middle infielders in the state of North Carolina is unbelievably deep.  We cut the list off at the Top 30 in the state, but could easily create debate with players outside the Top 50, belonging inside the Top 30.  Comparing classes can always be a tough task as the projection of the younger players can overtake, or be diminished by the output from the older players.  If nothing else, this list will create debate, as it has inside the offices of PBR of NC.

At No. 1 on the list is Nolan McLean, a potential 2020 draft pick from Garner HS.  McLean played for the 18U Team USA team this past summer and has starred on the gridiron, court, and diamond.  Athletic and physical, McLean will probably move off the middle of the field at the next level playing a corner infield spot, or possibly behind the dish.  The bat plays no matter where he is defensively and that will be his ticket to progress his career.  McLean is also armed with a fastball that has reached into the 90s.  Should the bat falter, he may be given a chance on the bump too, but I would not bet against the power profile in the senior prospect.

While the top 30 is littered with potential pro prospects, there are still some players that are uncommitted.  The first uncommitted player in the list is at No. 8, a freshman from Cox Mill, Tyler Zedalis.  The bat profiles ahead of his defense but the hands and footwork are adequate enough to project a chance to stay in the middle of the field.  The bat has a chance to play at a high level, with loud contact and consistent barrel ability.  There were times this spring where he was handled in the varsity lineup, but when on the barrel he is creating some fear at a very young age.

(Tyler Zedalis - JAN 2020)

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Vance Honeycutt will be an intriguing follow into the next year.  Lean and athletic, the Salisbury HS shortstop is an advanced defender that may step on campus at North Carolina in 2021-2022 and compete for a spot on the middle infield.  As 2019-2020 advanced, the bat began to take a big step forward.   There are times where lean body types can see a delayed hit tool come to life, and I don’t know that you can call a Junior in high school delayed in his development, but the hit tool took a big step forward.  As Honeycutt continues to mature and add strength he could compare to a past Chapel Hill great, Josh Horton.

(Vance Honeycutt - JAN 2020)

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In 2019, North Lincoln made a run through the state playoffs to capture the AA State Title.  2020 would have been an interesting year to follow the Knights through as well, as they returned a vast majority of their lineup.  That lineup was sparked by a Freshman shortstop, Matt Heavner.  Now a Sophomore, Heavner is a North Carolina State commit that has tools, but with his motor and feel for the game plays well above his pure tools.  There are tools that will need to progress to be a high end draft prospect out of high school, I would not bet against Heavner continuing to develop well into his 20s, and forcing his way through a system after putting up numbers in college.

(Matt Heavner - AUG 2019)

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Top 30 Middle Infielders


Rank Name High School Grad Pos Commitment
1 Nolan McLean Garner 2020 SS Oklahoma State
2 Payton Green Green Hope 2021 SS North Carolina State
3 Austin St. Laurent Western Alamance 2020 SS East Carolina
4 Matt Heavner North Lincoln 2022 SS North Carolina State
5 Vance Honeycutt Salisbury 2021 SS North Carolina

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