Dugout Chatter: Underclass Trials I

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By Reid Maus
PBR Ohio Staff Writer

We would like to thank all who participated in PBR Ohio's 2017 Underclass Trials I. This was a great opportunity for the class of 2019-2021 prospects to be put on college radars. Many players impressed during their individual workouts at the showcase.

Some players impressed in the games above the rest. These are the highlights from day one here at Top Prospect Games.

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

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

Dugout Chatter: Underclass Trials I

Benjamin Ward, RHP, Detroit Catholic Central, 2019
Notes: The right-handed pitcher from used his near side-arm delivery to put hitters down. The low-3/4 arm slot, by its natural created run on the fastball which is Ward’s go-to pitch. “I’ve heard from my catchers that my two seam fastball has a lot of run,” said the right-hander. Ward claims to be a contact pitcher, and trusts his defense, yet that mentality didn’t show today as he struck out six of the ten batters he faced.

Owen Poland, RHP,  Dover High School, 2019
Notes: It’s hard to deny that the strikeout is taking over the game of baseball, having said that, it is still a daunting task to get eight punchouts out of the ten batters he faced. Poland wielded two pitches to great effect. The fastball, which he used to set up the hitters early in the count, sat low-80s and topped out at 84 mph. His breaking pitch, a curveball, spun tight, broke late, and wasn’t touched by any batters in the two innings he threw.

Jaren Hewitt, 3B, Johnstown Monroe, 2019
Notes: They call it the most exciting play in baseball. Hewitt was able to get a ball down the line and come all the way around to score on an inside the park homerun. “The first at bat I was way out in front,” the infielder continued about how he adjusted his approach, “I knew I had to let the ball travel. I knew I could beat his fastball, so I sat on it and took it the other way.” Hewitt proved to be a versatile player because he said he looks to get a middle in fastball, but in the game he proved to do just the opposite. It proves to be an intimidating task to get out a hitter who can spray the ball around the yard.

Tate Tobin, 3B, Highland, 2019
Notes: Size matters and Tate Tobin has plenty of it. Well-built at 200-pounds and standing 6-foot, the third baseman laced a ball to right field early on in the game. “I had a three one count so I was sitting on my pitch,” the 2019 Highland grad said “I saw it and drove it backside.” Tobin said he is a patient hitter and looks for his pitch, he goes on the hunt after the first strike. “I want to make sure I get a good pitch to swing at.” The pitch Tobin is looking for is a belt high fastball over the plate, and from first-hand experience I saw what happens when he gets it.

Andrew Simones, RHP, Chamindae-Julienne, 2019
Notes: Fresh off a deep playoff run, they righty showed off on the mound today with a dominating fastball early in the count, then breaking off batters with a sharp ole Uncle Charlie. “I’m just going up there with the mindset that he isn’t going to beat,” said the right-handed pitcher, “knowing that your stuff is good that day, trying to get it passed him.” That’s exactly

Joe Horoszko, 3B/OF/RHP, St. Edward, 2019
Notes: The St. Edwards high school ball player plays third base, outfield, and takes to pitching as well. “I was trying to get a feel for what he was throwing,” Horoszko said about his extra base hit at bat “after I was down two strike, he hung a curveball down the middle and I pulled it down the line.” The 2019 grad tries to keep it simple up at the plate by looking for a first pitch fastball and tries to take it to the opposite field. Well, when you get a hanging breaker over the plate it beckons you to pull it.

Class of 2020

Logan Danzeisen, OF/RHP, Sylvania Southview, 2020
Notes: One of the hardest throwers at the event, Danzeisen was bringing it up there around the mid-80s. The class of 2020 right handed pitcher, had some much confidence in his fastball that he didn’t throw any other pitch. After giving a hit to the second batter he faced, Danzeisen came right back and attacked, and struck out the next three batters. “I came back threw strikes, and executed” said the right-hander “in baseball things happen, you have to come back.” The Sylvania Southview ball player works ahead by getting the first pitch strike, to open up the rest of the arsenal.

Teddy Eyink, RHP/1B, St. Ignatius, 2020
Notes: The incoming sophomore lists pitching as his primary position, putting first-base as his secondary but watching the athlete play, it is a toss-up between which of the two he is more talented at, it’s win-win regardless. The St. Ignatius ball player shined on both sides of the 60 foot gauntlet. Ripping a double into left field off a pitcher with some velocity, “the pitcher was throwing hard so I tried to jump on a fastball and drive it” Eyink said. That typically isn’t his game plan though, his normal approach is to let the fastball get deep in the box and drive it. Enough about the hitting though, as Eyink also displayed his penchant for striking batters out. The right hander dominated on the mound using multiple pitches to great effect. The 2020 has a bright future ahead of him.

Drew Collins, OF, Oregon Clay, 2020
Notes: Lefties with smooth swings will always have a place in the world of baseball, and this 2020 grad is absolutely no exception. “I knew he was coming straight with a fastball and I sat on it.” He must have been in the pitcher’s heads all day because he struck the ball well in multiple at bats. The 5-11 sophomore from Clay high school knows what the game is all about as well, as he attributes his success to “staying relaxed and having fun while playing the game.”  

Ethan Prenatt, RHP/OF, Bellevue, 2020
Notes: Prenatt both at the dish and on the bump. The 6-foot Bellevue product came up and smoked the first fastball he saw, ripping it into left field. The right handed has a simple, yet seemingly effective mentality at the plate, the only thing in his mind when comes up is “base hit.” Well his prowess carried over to the hill as well, as Prenatt struck out the majority of the batters he faced, using a arsenal of a low 80s fastball along with sharp bender.

Wyatt Reeder, OF/INF, Northmor, 2020
Notes: This outfielder/shortstop came up and hit the ball hard coming off a long at bat mixed with a group approach. “I was looking fastball,” the 2020 grad from Northmont high school said “I got one on the inside and tried to pull it.” That’s solid approach didn’t finish there as the tall left handed hitter then proceeded to choke up on the bat after falling behind in the count, and his patience paid off as the pitcher made the mistake of throwing Reeder a fastball, a pitcher that was then tattooed over the right fielders head. Reeder also said that early in the count he looking to do some damage, looking to hit the ball with some power, then after two strikes he goes into “protection mode.” It is hard to find a young kid that understand to be looking for power early on, then fall back on just putting the ball in play later in the count.

Michael McNamara, SS, St. Ignatius, 2020
Notes: This St. Ignatius shortstop did it all out on the field today. Flashing some leather on several plays over in the six hole, which his strong arm complimented. What really was the highlight of his day was when he put the ball in gap and came all the way around to score on the inside-the-park homerun. “The count was 3-1 and I knew the fastball was coming,” the 2020 grad said “I got one on the outside corner so I just drove it to right-center” This shortstop has good size on him standing at 6-foot-tall and weighing 190, with that size and a mentality to take it backside, McNamara is a tough out.

Class of 2021

Jace Middleton, RHP/OF, Olentangy, 2021
Notes: Remember being a freshman in high school? How intimidating it was? Well Jace Middleton isn’t fazed, the incoming freshman at Olentangy impressed on the mound and at the plate. “My fastball was working up in the zone,” said the 6-3 right-handed hurler “I always used a curveball and changeup and got a pop up on the changeup.” The incoming freshman has a big mentality, “I usually just say I’m better than you and going and competing against the guy at the plate. Middleton also mentioned how he looks to take the ball to the opposite field at the plate.

Cameron DeBord, OF/LHP, Unioto, 2021
Notes: Debord had a couple of hits on the day, the biggest being a triple down the line. “Well I was looking for my pitch which is middle-in and he gave it to me, so I drove it down the line” the class of 2021 grad from Unioto said. The outfielder said he also looks to take the ball to the backside of the field and favors contact over power.

Aidan Grabowski, 2B/SS, Avon Lake, 2021
Notes: The incoming freshman at Avon Lake high school almost had himself an inside-the-park homerun when he was able to put the ball in the right center field gap, allowing it to run on the turf. Grabowksi was held up at third, but was able to bring a run home in the process. Grabowski says he simply just “tries to find the pitch (he) wants and drive it.” The young ball player looks for the straight ones on the inside of the plate.