Prep Baseball Report

2024 Rankings: Top Uncommitted Catchers

TJ Hunt
Director, PBR New Jersey


A modest 2024 NJ Player Rankings update was completed shortly before the New Year that featured a couple new names to surface as the top players in the state - most notably, Virginia commit INF Luke Dickerson taking over the No. 1 slot.

Sifting through the ranks, there are still a ton of talented players on the board in this class. With solid spring high school seasons and continuing that momentum into the summer, these players could come off the board quickly. Let's delve into the top names by position, continuing with the top uncommitted catchers in the junior class

Click HERE to look at the 2024 NJ Player Rankings

More Uncommitted 2024 Grads


Top Ranked Uncommitted 2024 Catchers

Jake Howlett C / Wall, NJ / 2024

Howlett had a monster offensive showing at the Future Games last summer for Team New Jersey, blasting two long homers in gameplay and adding two other barreled hits on the weekend. Strong, 6-foot 192-pounds with a short, compact stroke through the zone, Howlett handles velocity at the plate with ease. Last spring on the varsity level, Howlett hit .340 with 2 HRs, 6 2B, and 24 RBI.



Payne Teel C / Ramapo, NJ / 2024

Teel was the catalyst for the North 1 Group 3 sectional champion Green Raiders in 2022. A primary catcher that can play any position on the field (similar to his cousin, Kyle, at UVA), Teel had a knack for finding the barrel in key situations for Ramapo. Among the state leader in total hits (46) last spring, Teel hit .447 with 2 HR, 5 2B, and 22 RBI. Lanky, athletic with still some room to fill out - posseses a strong arm (77 mph) from the behind the dish and consistently on the bag with throws between 2.06-2.14. Offensively, it's a simple, fluid load with whip to the barrel.



Jack Fitzpatrick C / Washington township, NJ / 2024

Fitzpatrick was sidelined for a good chunk of last year due to a shoulder injury, but the talent at the bat and arm strength from behind the plate remain the same. Advanced athletically, 7.09 runner, 2.01-2.13 pop times and 78 mph catcher velo. Opened, small leg lift and stride. Compact stroke with lift to finish.



Gabe Cushner C / Don Bosco Prep, NJ / 2024

Cushner had to wait his turn behind a couple talented catchers the last few years at Don Bosco in Jack Cannizzaro (James Madison) and JP Kuczik (Fairfield) - but he's ready to step into the role of every day catcher for the Ironmen in 2023. Advanced catch and throw skills for age, quick, whippy barrel path through the zone with some line drive pop. Expect Cushner to make a jump as he gets more reps at the varsity level.



Cristian Soto C / Central Regional, NJ / 2024

Soto is coming off an injury which had him sidelined most of the summer and all of the fall season. Soto plays with a good motor and handles velocity well (he was the catcher for UCF's Cam Leiter for the last few years). Quiet, crouched stance with some line drive pop, expect Soto's junior campaign to be a separator for him heading into the recruiting trail of the summer.




Other Catchers to Note

+ Nicholas Merunka, Delran

+ Joseph Haines, St. Peter's Prep

+ Jesse Diaco, St. Peter's Prep

+ Louis Friedrich, Delbarton



Super 60 Pro Showcase NATIONAL 02/05 The MAX - McCook, IL
2023 Northeast ProCase (Invite Only) NJ 02/12 The Liberty Arena / Williamsport, PA
Central New Jersey Preseason ID NJ 02/20 Iron Peak Sports - Hillsborough, NJ
2023 NJ Preseason All-State: Upperclass (Invite-Only) NJ 03/04 Top Corner Sports - Bridgewater, NJ
2023 NJ Preseason All State: Underclass (Invite-Only) NJ 03/11 Sportika - Manalapan, NJ
Northern New Jersey Preseason ID NJ 03/12 Sports Domain Academy - Clifton, NJ
2023 NJ Rising Stars ID (2027 Grads) NJ 03/19 Sports Domain Academy (Clifton, NJ)