On the Hunt: NCTB Fall Classic Preview





After fantastic experiences in the Golden State at the Boras Classic and Area Code Games PBR will be heading back to California for NCTB’s Fall Classic. The elite tournament will feature 15 of the top teams on the west coast, and will be hosted on the campus of the University of Pacific as well as the Billy Hebert Complex. The event will feature a pro-style offensive workout with 60-yard dash times being recorded, as well, on Friday morning, before games kick off in the afternoon. A jam-packed schedule with plenty of talented players in attendance should make for an excellent experience for the players and all of the college coaches in attendance who are hoping to see their future program changers. Before the action gets underway next week, On the Hunt, takes a look at some of the prospects that the PBR staff is looking forward to seeing:

+ Having witnessed the strength and bat quickness at Underclass Area Code Games, I am looking forward to getting to see San Diego recruit, 2019 OF Michael Dixon (Berkely HS, CA) again. He tortured pitchers in SoCal back in August with a short stroke, and the ball really jumped off his bat. He shows off pull side power, and also has the ability to drive the ball to both gaps. He played the game at a high level against some of the best players in the country.

+ 2020 OF Petey Halpin (St. Francis HS, CA), a UCLA recruit, made a name for himself last summer as a member of Team USA’s 15U squad. His speed makes him a constant threat on offense as well as defense, and his high-energy play is infectious. The left-handed hitter is exciting to watch, and features some quick twitch actions.

+ 2021 1B/LHP Blake Burke (De La Salle HS, CA) may only be a freshman, but he is already 6-foot-3, 195-pounds, and possesses a powerful, left-handed stroke. While the pop in his bat has college coaches buzzing, his 86 mph fastball on the mound is also intriguing as a possible two-way player at the next level.

+ 2018 RHP Jeremy Hassel (Tesoro HS, CA) is an interesting pitcher to watch as he is still uncommitted, and was up to 89 mph earlier in the fall. With many schools still in search of arms for their 2018 class, Hassel’s outing will be one that coaches will want to make their way over to.

+ Fresh off a commitment to San Diego State, 2020 INF Tino Bethancourt is a player I am looking forward to watching throughout the weekend. The athletic, 6-foot-2, 170-pounder still shows room to fill out, physically. He has already exhibited some power from the right side, and that stands to increase even more as he matures. In the field, he shows off clean hands and strong arm.

+ 2018 RHP Alex Benavides (Gilroy HS, CA), a San Diego State recruit, has shown plenty of upside in the past, and his ¾ slot is difficult to pick-up for right-handed hitters. At 6-foot-4, 175-pounds, Benavides has a lean, projectable pitcher’s frame, and has a chance to make a jump in the future.

+ 2019 3B Dalton Bowling (John F. Kennedy HS, CA) is a physical right-handed hitter with a strong, 6-foot-3, 208-pound frame. The corner infielder has a chance to hit for power in the future, and will have eyes locked on his at-bats all weekend.

+ Keep an eye out for 2020 RHP Aidan Lee (Gilroy HS, CA) in his start on Friday for Dub Baseball Dynasty. The lean, 6-foot-3 right-hander has a loose arm with an easy, repeatable delivery that projects for even more velocity in the future. He can also swing it a bit, and that athleticism transfers over to the mound.

+ 2021 SS Davis Diaz (Acalanes HS, CA) is a defensive wizard that coaches are going to want to pay close attention to throughout the weekend. He flashes a slick glove, and has the ability to save runs on defense. At the plate, the physically developing right-handed hitter has more pop than you would think given his 5-foot-7, 130-pound frame.

+ 2021 RHP Tommy Dilandri (Bishop Gorman HS, LV) is already running his fastball up into the mid-eighties, but it is his sharp slider that may separate him in the end. The 6-foot-1, 188-pounder features a durable frame, and projects for even more velocity in the future. He also flashes potential with the bat as he has some power in his sturdy frame.

+ 2021 INF Cody Schrier (JSerra Catholic HS, CA) is an exciting young infielder with an athletic, 6-foot, 165-pound frame that college coaches will be paying close attention to. While his strong frame may eventually push him to third base at the next level, his clean hands and arm are more than capable at shortstop at the time being. He features some strength at the plate hitting from the right side, and may have a chance to be a middle of the order type bat.

+ 2019 OF Colin Barber (Pleasant Valley HS, CA), and Oregon recruit, has a potential impact bat at the next level. The 5-foot-11, 170-pounder is athletic, and shows feel for the barrel from the left side.

+ 2019 RHP William Kempner (Valley Christian Schools, CA) is an interesting prospect that I watched out at the Underclass Area Code Games. He sits in the mid-eighties but has run it up higher, and his low ¾ slot makes it very difficult for right-handers to stand in on him. Featuring a durable, 6-foot, 200-pound frame, Kempner has a chance to develop into an innings-eater whose fastball may find even more sink in the future, and with that, plenty of ground balls.

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