Highly-Regarded Freshman Commits To West Virginia


Bruce Hefflinger
PBR Ohio Senior Writer

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Highly-Regarded Freshman Commits To West Virginia

To view the commitment tracker, click here.
To view the uncommitted spotlights, click here.


Taylor Belza

Class of 2025 / C

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2025
  • Primary Position: C
    Secondary Position: 3B
  • High School: Elyria Catholic
    State: OH
  • Summer Team: Bo Jackson Elite Black 15U
  • Height: 6-1
    Weight: 194lbs
  • Bat/Throw: L/R

Statistics

Pitching
79
Max FB
(02/21/21)
75 - 79
FB
(02/21/21)
66 - 69
CB
(02/21/21)
69 - 71
CH
(02/21/21)
Pitching
Max FB
79
FB
75 - 79
CB
66 - 69
CH
69 - 71
Position
7.53
60-yard
(06/29/20)
2.04 - 2.07
Pop Time
(02/21/21)
78
INF Velo
(06/29/20)
74
C Velo
(02/21/21)
95
Exit Velo
(01/30/21)
Position
60-yard
7.9
Pop Time
2.04 - 2.07
INF Velo
77
C Velo
74
Exit Velo
89
Position
Exit Velo
95
Position
60-yard
7.53
Pop Time
2.12 - 2.21
INF Velo
78
C Velo
70
Exit Velo
87
Trackman - Fastball
79.2
Velocity (max)
(02/21/21)
76.1
Eff Velocity (avg)
(02/21/21)
1957
Spin Rate (max)
(02/21/21)
1945
Spin Rate (avg)
(02/21/21)
Trackman - Fastball
Velocity (max)
79.2
Velo Range
78.4 - 79.2
Eff Velocity (avg)
76.1
Spin Rate (max)
1957
Spin Rate (avg)
1945
IVB (max)
IVB (avg)
HM (max)
HM (avg)
Extension (avg)
Release Ht (avg)
Spin Score (max)
Zone %
Trackman - Curveball
68.5
Velocity (max)
(02/21/21)
64.0 - 68.5
Velo Range
(02/21/21)
62.4
Eff Velocity (avg)
(02/21/21)
1931
Spin Rate (max)
(02/21/21)
1860
Spin Rate (avg)
(02/21/21)
Trackman - Curveball
Velocity (max)
68.5
Velo Range
64 - 68.5
Eff Velocity (avg)
62.4
Spin Rate (max)
1931
Spin Rate (avg)
1860
IVB (max)
IVB (avg)
HM (max)
HM (avg)
Extension (avg)
Release Ht (avg)
Spin Score (max)
Zone %
Trackman - ChangeUp
71.1
Velocity (max)
(02/21/21)
67.1
Eff Velocity (avg)
(02/21/21)
1758
Spin Rate (max)
(02/21/21)
1627
Spin Rate (avg)
(02/21/21)
Trackman - ChangeUp
Velocity (max)
71.1
Velo Range
69.1 - 71.1
Eff Velocity (avg)
67.1
Spin Rate (max)
1758
Spin Rate (avg)
1627
IVB (max)
IVB (avg)
HM (max)
HM (avg)
Extension (avg)
Release Ht (avg)
Spin Score (max)
Zone %
Trackman - Hitting
89.1
Exit Velocity (max)
(02/21/21)
82.1
Exit Velocity (avg)
(02/21/21)
252
Distance (avg)
(06/29/20)
320
Distance (max)
(02/21/21)
Trackman - Hitting
Exit Velocity (max)
89.1
Exit Velocity (avg)
82.1
Distance (avg)
161
Distance (max)
320
Sweet Spot %
Line Drive %
Fly Ball %
Ground Ball %
Trackman - Hitting
Exit Velocity (max)
87.9
Exit Velocity (avg)
79.2
Distance (avg)
252
Distance (max)
300
Sweet Spot %
Line Drive %
Fly Ball %
Blast - Hitting
20.7
Hand Speed (max)
(06/29/20)
20.1
Hand Speed (avg)
(06/29/20)
73.5
Bat Speed (max)
(06/29/20)
71.1
Bat Speed (avg)
(06/29/20)
Blast - Hitting
Rot. Acc (max)
Rot. Acc (avg)
Hand Speed (max)
18.4
Hand Speed (avg)
17.2
Bat Speed (max)
68.7
Bat Speed (avg)
66.2
On Plane Eff (avg)
Blast - Hitting
Rot. Acc (max)
Rot. Acc (avg)
Hand Speed (max)
20.7
Hand Speed (avg)
20.1
Bat Speed (max)
73.5
Bat Speed (avg)
71.1
On Plane Eff (avg)

Highly-Regarded Freshman Commits To West Virginia

GRAFTON - When Taylor Belza was 11 he visited his brother who was a student at West Virginia. It was then that the younger sibling made a decision.

“I went there to watch a game and I loved it there,” Belza reflected.

That fondness carried over to this day for the Saint Ignatius freshman, who recently made a commitment to the Big 12 Conference school.

“They reached out to me before last season,” the second-rated 2025 player in Ohio related. “We talked for maybe three weeks and then they came to watch a PBR event at the end of July. They were there to watch Max (Palinski, Ignatius teammate) and we ended up in a relationship. I went to a camp there and walked around campus and talked to the coaches face to face. It was an awesome process.

“They gave me an offer but I sat on it for two months,” Belza continued. “I talked it over with my family and decided to commit.”

A trio of SEC schools along with another in the ACC had the ninth grader on their radar before Belza decided West Virginia was right for him.

“I love everything about it,” Belza said. “The coaching staff makes it a big family. I talked to some of the players there and they all loved it. It all led to how the coaches coach and that it’s a family.”

The staff sees Belza fitting right in.

“They like how I play with energy, my leadership and that I share similar values with them,” Belza explained.

The top-ranked 2025 catcher in the state only began playing behind the plate recently.

“I started catching in 13U and have been working my butt off to get where I am now,” Belza said. “I was playing with a team in Florida and our catcher got hurt. I volunteered to play it and ended up liking it. Being involved in every play is something I really enjoy.”

It has helped the left-handed hitting Belza reach a coveted objective.

“It’s always been a dream of mine to play college baseball,” Belza noted. “When I was younger I always wanted to go to a big SEC school like Vanderbilt or Mississippi. It became a reality when I started playing in big-time tournaments.”

In addition to his parents, Belza pointed to Cory Valentine and Chris Mcareany, coaches on travel teams in Ohio and Georgia, along with Woody Wallace, who has helped with his catching, as being influential in making his college baseball aspirations come true.

“My mom and dad put me in the right place to grow and become the person I am,” Belza said.

Although just turning 15 back in August, Belza is confident the timing to commit was right.

“The opportunity they presented me was outstanding, both for me and my family,” Belza noted. “I love everything about it and I’d never second guess it. I think West Virginia will help me achieve my goals and to make the pros. The coaches are going to make me a better person on and off the field.”

The work has not ended, however, for the 3.5 student, who plans to major “in something helping others, from teaching to physical therapy.” 

“I have a lot I need to work on,” admitted Belza. “When I get to West Virginia I want to be the best I can be at that age. I want to be able to compete with all the seniors. I want to learn from the older guys now while working to be bigger, stronger and faster. I mostly need to work on the mental side while doing all the little things.”

The 6-0 185-pounder believes he can be a major asset once arriving at the university in Morgantown, 31/2 hours from home.

“I feel there are many things I can bring, starting with a leadership role,” Belza said. “I hope I can bring a light to the team, playing with the right energy, pushing others and having everyone around me working hard.”

For now, the Saint Ignatius freshman is just happy to know where his future after high school will take him.

“It was an ecstatic feeling,” Belza said of making a commitment.”The whole family was super happy. My brother was in awe. He lives in California and is super happy for me. I’m still in shock to know where I’ll be playing if it all works out.”



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