Prep Baseball Report

Illinois Metro East Kickoff Classic: Scout Blog

By Illinois Scouting Staff




By Drew Locascio
Illinois Scouting Director

Hayden Moore, OF, Edwardsville, 2021
Missouri State commit. 5-foot-9, 140-pound, wiry, switch-hitting outfielder. Offensively, led-off for Edwardsville and took quality at-bats in his first ever varsity contest. Finished 1-for-3 with an RBI, run scored and hit-by-pitch. Aggressive on the bases, plays with energy and enthusiasm. Defensively, natural outfield actions and strong arm.

Matthew Boyer, RHP, Edwardsville, 2019
Wisconsin-Milwaukee commit. 6-foot-2, 195-pound, well-proportioned, wide-shouldered, right-handed pitcher. Started on the mound for Edwardsville. Struck out six, did not walk a batter and only allowed one hit in his three innings of work. Smooth, repeatable delivery, high front-side and ball comes out of a short, over-the-top window. Fastball, works straight, creates angle and pounded the zone behind a fastball that sat 83-86 mph, touching 87 once. Curveball is go-to secondary offering. Thrown aggressively, 12/6 action, tight spin and depth, 73 mph.

Dawson Taylor, RHP, Edwardsville, 2019
John A. Logan JC commit. 6-foot-4, 201-pound, strong-bodied, right-handed pitcher. Continues to get better every time we see him. One of the harder throwers in the state. Came out of the bullpen and did not throw one fastball under 90 mph in his first inning of work; sat 90-92 mph, touching a couple 93’s. Second inning worked more in the 88-89 mph range. Fastball was around the plate, mostly straight, occasional arm-side-action. Went to his slider only a couple of times. Flashed one with late bite, 10/4 shape and swing-and-miss action, 84 mph. Did not allow a hit in his two innings and struck out five. Should draw some pro interest moving forward this spring.

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Dawson Taylor (3.16.19)

Collin Salter, RHP, Edwardsville, 2020
5-foot-11, 175-pound, right-handed pitcher. Came out of the bullpen and combined with the two other Edwardsville arms to strike out 14 Caravan hitters. Salter truck out five in his two innings of work and only allowed one hit. Calm, confident demeanor on the mound. Stays closed down the mound and worked with rhythm. Arm works short and clean from a high ¾ to over-the-top slot. Fastball comes out easy, run and sinking action at times, 82 mph. Went to his breaking ball often; quality offering, feel for the zone, late sweeping action, 70-71 mph. Follow 2020 arm with more in the tank.

Ed Howard, SS, Mount Carmel, 2020
Oklahoma commit, currently ranked No. 1 in the Illinois’ 2020 class. 6-foot-2, 175-pound, right-handed hitting infielder; highly-athletic, wiry frame and continues to add quality strength. Is one of top prospects and shortstops in the country. Stands out on defense. Plays the game with ease and confidence. Soft, receptive hands, natural and athletic on the move. Quick, clean release, plus arm across the infield, plays true, accurate and has finish. Made multiple difficult plays look routine throughout the evening. Continues to impress every time we see him. Offensively, finished 0-for-2 with a run scored.


By Drew Locascio
Illinois Scouting Director

Matthew Sorrells, LHP, Oswego, 2019
Wisconsin-Oshkosh commit. 6-foot-1, 180-pound, athletically-built, left-handed pitcher. Started on the mound for Oswego and showed a three-pitch mix. Short, over-the-top arm action, directional down the mound and hides the baseball. Fastball works straight, occasional tilt, sat 81-83 mph, touched 84. Breaking ball, slider action, 2/8 shape, short, late, tight break, feel, 72-73 mph. Changeup, maintains arm speed, straight action, thrown for strikes, 76-77 mph. Went 2.1 innings, allowed one hit, two runs and struck out five.

Cal Hejza, INF, Oswego, 2020
Illinois commit. 5-foot-11, 150-pound, right-handed hitting shortstop. Advanced defensive actions, soft confident hands, plays well on the move and has a quick, clean release. Highly-efficient double play turns, smooth across the bag and strong, accurate arm. Offensively, went 2-for-3 with two runs scored, two RBI and a BB. Balanced, relaxed setup, level bat path, stays on top of the baseball.

Parker Wielt, CF, Mt. Vernon, 2019
SIU-Edwardsville commit. 6-foot-2, 195-pound, left-handed hitting center fielder with an athletic-build, strong-lower half. Offensively, hit in the two hole for Mt. Vernon. Athletic setup in the box, smooth quiet load and stays balanced throughout. Loose, quick hands, stays inside the baseball at times, works gap-to-gap. Finished 2-for-4 with a double. Defensively, quick, efficient footwork in the outfield. Soft hands, plays through the baseball and gains ground on exchange. Clean, quick arm action, accurate, strong arm that carries.


By Drew Locascio
Illinois Scouting Director

Josh Dima, CF, Althoff, 2020
6-foot-1, 160-pound, lean, athletic, left/left center fielder. Defensively, natural outfield actions, quick first step and covers ground with ease. Loose, athletic arm action, quick release and strong, accurate throws. Offensively, hit in the four-hole for Althoff. Open, athletic setup, loose, quick hands, stays short the baseball, controls the baseball and uses the whole field. Finished 2-for-2 with two runs scores, a double down the left-field line and a single back up the middle.

Payton Whitehead, RHP, Althoff, 2020
Right-handed pitcher, lean frame, young look. Started on the mound for Althoff. Struck out eight in five innings of work and allowed three earned runs. Athletic, repeatable delivery, directional to home plate. Clean arm action from an over-the-top slot. Fastball works mostly straight, occasional run when pitching to his arm side, sat 81-83 mph early in his outing. Changeup was his go-to secondary offering, pronates, fade action, around the zone, 75-76 mph. Also, hit in the three-hole and went 1-for-3 with a double down the right field line.

Mitch Hemmen, RHP, Teutopolis, 2020
6-foot, 185-pound, strong, durably-built, right-handed pitcher. Started on the mound for Teutopolis. Smooth delivery, slight coil at balance point, works on-line down the mound and lands front-toe closed. Arm is short and compact from a high ¾ slot with quickness out front. Worked primarily with his fastball, comes out clean and easy, controlled the zone for most of his outing, sat 84-86 mph, touched 87. Struck out seven in 3.1 innings pitched.

Trenton Schwerdt, 3B, Teutopolis, 2020
Well-proportioned, left-handed hitting third baseman. Open setup, pre-pitch rhythm, loose hands and a short, direct path to the baseball with a gap-to-gap approach. Finished 3-for-3 with a double, walk and run scored. Doubled deep to left-center field and lined a single sharply to right. Defensively, steady hands at third base and an accurate arm across the diamond.


Adam Panayotovich
Illinois Area Scout

Connor Milton, OF, Champaign Central, 2020
Illinois commit. 6-foot 175-pound, chiseled, athletic build, plays the game hard and with plenty energy. Hit in the two hole, worked deep counts on the day, but wasn’t rewarded with any hits. Drew two walks and caused havoc on the bases, stealing two bags with ease and scored two runs. Tracked down balls with ease in centerfield on a day that saw 30-plus mph winds. Clocked at 4.38 home to first.

Joel Sarver, RHP/INF, Champaign Central, 2020
Uncommitted Junior. 6-foot-1, 180-pound right/right two-way prospect, well-proportioned athlete, confident and composed in his all-around game. Started on the mound and hit third. Went two innings on the bump, works in-line, full arm action, seemed easy and repeats. Fastball sat 84-86 mph in his first inning, 83-84 mph in the second. Slider showed tight spin, went to it often for strikes, 73-74 mph. Good day at the dish, aggressive hitter, went with the pitch location. Finished 2-for-4 with four RBI and a run scored.

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Joel Sarver (3.16.19)

Isaiah Jackson, OF, Champaign Central, 2020
One of the top uncommitted juniors in the state. 6-foot-5, 185-pound hybrid athlete, has tremendous upside in his frame and abilities. Let the ball travel showing selective aggressiveness at the dish with gap-to-gap pop turning around each outfield defender for all three extra base hits. Went 3-for-3 with two triples, a double, and an RBI, also walked twice reaching base in each at-bat. Plus run tool, stole two bags with ease and scored two runs.

Caleb Pyrz, INF/RHP, Champaign Central, 2020
Uncommitted junior. 6-foot, 170-pound, thin build with athleticism in actions. Plays the game hard. Right-handed hitter, fluid path works slightly uphill, short to the ball, line drive type hitter, middle approach. Lined a hard single up the middle and pulled a double down the left field line. Finished 2-for-3 with two runs and one RBI. Threw two innings out of the pen, striking out three. Clean arm action, low effort delivery, uphill as the pitch count rose. Fastball sat 78-81 mph with a depthy curve at 66 mph.

Jack Born, RHP, Champaign Central, 2021
6-foot-1, 175-pound right-handed pitcher, high-waisted build, upside in the frame and actions as he fills out physically. Confident on the dirt circle. Pitches with tempo and rhythm, works in-line, short stride and arm action, high ¾ slot, easy effort. Commanded the zone early, started to pull as the pitch count rose. Fastball topped 74 mph with promise of a velo jump in the near future, can spin a breaking ball.

Brady Schmitz, C, Freeburg, 2020
Uncommitted junior. 5-foot-11, 180-pound, well put together, strong build, plays the game hard. Hit in the three hole for Freeburg, has aggression in his swing, Led the Midgets offense going 2-for-4 with two doubles, one to left field and one to right, three RBI and a walk.

Colin Bruggemann, 3B, Freeburg, 2021
6-foot-5, 200-pound, left/right infield prospect, extra long and lean build, plenty room for added strength, already advanced size for his 2021 classification. Seems to be getting a grasp for his developing body overall actions. Offensively selective at the plate, short to the ball, path works uphill with some bat speed. Hit a two-run home run in the six hole for Freeburg, can lift the baseball.


By Adam Panayotovich
Illinois Area Scout

Mason Williams, LHP/UTIL, Pleasant Plains, 2021
Left/left prospect, long and lanky frame with room for continued growth. Advanced athletic actions for 2021 classification. Worked a clean, three punchout first inning in the start for the Cardinals, finished with 1.2 IP and four Ks. Attacked hitters early, works with rhythm and tempo, pulls his fastball to his gloveside, came out firm and through the zone. Long, loose and clean arm action, promise for a velo jump in his future as he fills out. Fastball sat 76-79 mph jumped out of the hand at times. Can spin a slider with vertical depth, in the zone, 67-69 mph. Hit two hole, comfortable in the box, controlled the barrel. Drew two walks and grounded out hard to third base.

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Mason Williams (3.16.19)

Joel Niermann, INF/RHP, Pleasant Plains, 2020
6-foot-5, 200-pound, extra-large frame with some athletic actions. Plenty of upside in his frame alone. Hit four-hole and played short stop, confident defender, profiles perhaps at the hot corner. Hands work, long to release, arm works over the top. Works the opposite field at the dish, lined out hard to second base and laced a single in the 3-4 hole.

Corgan Greer, C, Pleasant Plains, 2020
5-foot-10, 155-pound compact build. Hit three hole and showed well at the plate. Sets up closed, short to the baseball with some rhythm and bat speed in his game. Middle of the field approach, can go the other way. Slapped a single to the opposite field, walked and took third on a pass ball that nearly got out of the dirt circle, comfortable on the bases.

MT. ZION VS. TRIAD - 3.14.19

By Andy Sroka
Illinois Associate Scout

Matthew Weis, C, Triad, 2019
Uncommitted. 5-foot-5, 140-pound catcher with athleticism from behind the plate. Quick transfers, short arm action that showed carry, popped 2.16 in-game to throw out a base stealer; 2.20 on another attempted steal. Strong hands in the right-handed batter’s box, opposite-field type.

Daniel Chausse, RHP, Mt. Zion, 2019
Uncommitted. 6-foot, 172 pounds with an average, athletic frame. Long and loose arm action, quick out front, from a ¾ slot. Works on line and is able to fill up the zone with four-pitch mix. Fastball, arm-side run, 82-84 mph, touched 85 mph. Slider, go-to offspeed on this day, flashed tight 10/6 shape, 73-76 mph. Curveball, distinctly different, more change-of-pace, 68-69 mph. Changeup, attacks the bottom of the zone, thrown at arm speed, 73-76 mph.


By Andy Sroka
Illinois Associate Scout

Robby Taul, SS/2B, Alton, 2019
John A. Logan JC commit. 6-foot-1, 160-pound middle infielder with lean, athletic frame. A natural smooth defender, soft hands, quick transfers, loose and athletic arm action. Right-handed hitter, quick hands, barreled a ball to deep center that went for a triple to lead off the game against Glenwood.

Gavin Wahlbrink, RHP/INF, Chatham-Glenwood, 2019
Lincoln Land CC commit. 6-foot, 170-pound right-handed pitcher with average frame, some thickness in lower half. Works in line, able to mix arm slots effectively, typically slings from a ¾ slot with quick arm speed. Showed a feel for three pitches, fills the zone. Fastball, regular sink, 81-84 mph. Slider, acted more slurve-y, flashed tight break, 71-72 mph. Changeup, mostly maintained arm speed, feel down in the zone, 76-77 mph. Athletic defender off the mound.

Evan Rightnowar, RHP, Chatham-Glenwood, 2019
Snead State CC commit. 6-foot-2, 195-pound righty with large, thick build. Works on line, big leg kick. Long arm action, straight over-the-top arm slot. Fastball is straight downhill, gets tilt, straight, heavy, sat 86-88 mph, touched 90 mph in his first inning in relief, more 85-87 mph in the second inning. Curveball, sharp, late, 12/6, able to drop in for strikes, 70-73 mph. Did not see a changeup.


By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor - Illinois/Wisconsin

Shane Wilhelm, RHP, Columbia, 2019
Missouri commit. 5-foot-11, 185-pound right-handed pitcher, strong athletic frame. Athletic delivery, repeats, stays on line and balance. Easy arm action, short draw 3/4 slot. Fastball plays with arm side run 88-89 early on, showed feel, mostly goes to glove side. Changeup showed plus action the first, 80 mph, swing-and-miss pitch. Went to slider more in the later innings, lateral action, 10/4 shape 74-76 mph, showed ability to get swing and miss. Also hits two-hole for Columbia.

Sam Horner, RF Columbia, 2020
5-foot-11, 185-pound left-handed hitting outfield. Hit five-hole. Tall open setup, confident presence in the box. Hands and swing are loose, patient takes. Showed feel for the barrel, went 2-for-2 with two singles and a walk, run scored. 4.37 down the line on an infield single.

Bodie Jones, RHP, Carbondale, 2019
6-foot-1, 165-pound right-handed pitcher, lanky frame, projectable build. Loose action delivery, works on line, slight heel toe landing. Arm action is short on back side, high ¾ slot. Fastball played straight, 80-82 mph, touched 83 mph and touched 85 mph in the first, showed ability to control the zone. Curveball has 11/5 shape, 70-72 mph, showed feel. Worked 5.1 innings, struck out seven, three walks, three hits.

Justin Massingale, SS, Carbondale, 2020
5-foot-9, 160-pound middle infielder, second base profile at the next level. Defensively hands played soft, above average action, works through the baseball and played well on the move. Release is athletic, multiple slots, lacked carry. Right-handed hitter, short path, inside out type approach, line drive contact. Went 2-for-4 with a stolen base out of the leadoff spot.

O'FALLON vs. OSWEGO - 3.14.19

By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor - Illinois/Wisconsin

Josh Gibson, SS, O’Fallon, 2019
Jefferson JC commit. 5-foot-8, 165-pound shortstop, compact frame, dynamic athletic build, live body. Plays the game faster than his peers, feet are light and quick, moves well on the diamond, both defensively and around the bases. Hands play out front, works through the baseball, good angles. Arm action is short, carries well, plus arm strength for age. Three-hole, right-handed hitter, athletic setup. Took quality at bats, quiet takes, sees the baseball well. Above average runner showed ability to change the game with his speed, stole three bases and scored two runs. 1-for-2 with two walks and an RBI.

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Josh GIbson (3.14.19)

Luke Menard, 2B, Oswego, 2019
Elgin CC commit. 6-foot, 178-pound left-handed hitting infielder, second base profile. Showed actions and reliable hands defensively, moves well laterally. Took competive at-bats, handles the bat well from the left side and can spray foul pole to foul pole, flashed opposite field pop. Above average runner, will steal bases. Finished 2-for-4, 2B, 3R, 2RBI.

Drew Tebbe, OF, O’Fallon, 2021
5-foot-9, 145-pound outfielder, small compact frame. Right-handed hitter, nine-hole, took competitive at-bats all day. Works counts, quiet takes, on time. Flashed pop with a hard fly out to pull side. Intriguing sophomore follow.



By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor - Illinois/Wisconsin

Collin Witzke, RHP, Oswego East, 2019
Kent State commit. 6-foot-3, 185-pound right-handed pitcher, lean frame. Delivery works online, squared landing. Arm action plunges on back side, high ¾ slot. Fastball played firm, occasional tilt, sitting 86-87 mph. Curveball has lateral action 72-74 mph, slurve type.

Adam Dowler, LHP, Oswego East, 2021
6-foot-3, 200-pound left-handed pitcher, athletic projectable frame, loose levers with strength. Delivery is athletic, up-tempo, showed moxy and competitiveness on the mound, strong mound presence. Struck out the side in the seventh, fanned two on plus breaking balls for his age. Lively loose arm action, ¾ slot. Fastball ranged 81-85, hard finish through the zone, gets on hitters. Breaking ball has plus potential, swing-and-miss action, 71-72 mph, 1/7, flashed slurve action. High follow 2021 arm.

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Adam Dowler (3.16.19)

Sean Shook, 3B/2B, Normal West, 2020
Thick stocky body type, strong build. Right-handed hitter, compact swing with gap-to-gap approach, showed ability to go to all fields with opposite-field gap double. Soft hands on the infield, fields out in front likely profiles at third base or second base, showed the ability to make the turn at 2B. Bat to follow.

BENET VS. MOLINE - 3.15.19

By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor - Illinois/Wisconsin

Brody Harding, SS, Moline, 2019
Illinois commit. Strong, compact body type,  strong thick lower half. Left-handed hitter, three-hole, slightly open stance, short stride. Plus bat speed and barrel awareness, excellent balance and feel for the barrel. Short compact stroke, ball jumps off the bat for size. Premium defender in the middle of the infield, soft hands and athletic arm action. 1-3, 2 RBI.

Jack Rodi, RHP, Benet, 2021
6-foot-3, 175-pound right-handed pitcher, long lanky frame projectable build. Delivery repeats and online, tall and fall type. Arm action is loose and clean, over the top slot. Fastball is mostly straight, four seam type, showed above-average control for age, sat 80-83 mph. Curveball has 11/5 shape 71 mph above-average feel and showed ability to get swing and miss. Above average overall pitchability for age.

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Jack Rodi (3.15.19)

Sam Monroe, CF, Moline, 2020
Compact body type, with strength. Left-handed hitter, lead-off type, handles the bat well, , barrel control and can spray the baseball. Grinder ball player type, sets the table to the rest of the lineup. Finished with two hits.


By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor - Illinois/Wisconsin

Marquis Jackson, 3B, Brother Rice, 2020
Oklahoma commit. 5-foot-9 190-pound left-handed hitting infielder, compact strong build. Confident presence in the box, swings are aggressive with intent, was on time all day, tough out. Showed pull side pop with ease, two-run home run in 7th inning to right center, finished with five RBI out of the seven hole. Defensively has ability to make routine plays at third base, average arm strength.


By Drew Locascio
Illinois Scouting Director

Evan Gray, RHP, Belleville East, 2019
Arkansas commit. 6-foot-4, 190-pound, strong, wide-shouldered, right-handed pitcher. Started on the mound for Belleville East. One of the top power arms in the state. Arm is clean on the backside and quick out front. Did not throw a fastball under 90 mph until he had to work out of the stretch in the fourth inning. 11 of his first 12 outs were recorded via the strikeout and he struck out eight straight at one point. Worked primarily off of his fastball. Fastball, works straight, four-seam finish through the zone, average command and sat 90-92 mph, touching a few 93’s early. Out of the stretch worked mostly 88-89 mph. Showed a curveball and a slider. Slider flashed hard bite, inconsistent feel, 83-84 mph. Went more to the curveball and gained feel as the outing went on; 11/5 shape, tight spin, swing and miss action at times, sat 76-79 mph. Extremely impressive first start of the season for Gray. Final Line: 6 IP, 2 H, R, 14 K, BB.

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Evan Gray (3.16.19)

Drew Gray, CF, Belleville East, 2021
Arkansas commit. 6-foot-2, 165-pound, high-waisted, left/left outfielder with plenty of room to add quality strength. Played center field and hit in the three-hole. Open, tall setup, smooth easy load and fluid pre-pitch movement. Aggressive approach, looks to attack the fastball, expands the zone on occasion. Loose, fast hands, present bat speed and twitch in swing. One of the top 2021 position players in the state with a high-ceiling.

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