Prep Baseball Report

Positional Rankings: NC's Top Catchers

Brandon Hall
Executive Director, PBR of NC

The published rankings on Prep Baseball Report are always a big read for high school baseball fans across the country.  Here in North Carolina the updated rankings typically top the chart for most read stories of the year.  PBR’s team of scouts are constantly working to identify the top talent across their territory and as part of that process, publishing rankings, evaluations, and statistics.

The class rankings in North Carolina have been updated for 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023 graduates.  Inside the rankings database on PBR, fans can sort the rankings by positions.  While going through the rankings, North Carolina stats do not go position by position, but instead take a player grading policy and work through the player grades to sort players into the state rankings.  Positional rankings fall where they may, based on a player’s primary position in their PBR Profile.

Today we continue to unveil the top players in North Carolina by position.  Up next are the top catchers in the state.  This list of Top 25 Catchers in North Carolina does not account for a player’s graduating class.  The list is compiled by the player grades given to the catchers in the state and then scouts from PBR working through the sorted list to arrange players that may have similar player grades.


NC:  2020  |  2021  |  2022 | 2023

Overall:  2020  |  2021  |  2022


Positional Rankings in North Carolina


Inside Top 25 Catchers in NC

The crop of catchers in North Carolina has been very deep for the past several years and the current high school catchers in the state continue to make that statement very true.  Inside the top 25 catchers in the state, there are catchers from each of the four current high school classes.  Four of the Top 25 catchers remain uncommitted at the release of this story.

Bryan Arendt (C, Holly Springs HS, 2021) comes in as the top catching prospect in the state.  Arendt is a physical athlete, standing 6-foot-2, 205 pounds and running a 6.83 sixty.  The tool that stands apart is the arm with a positional velocity of 89 out of his crouch in a workout setting, and an infield velocity of 94 mph across the diamond.  Arendt carries the arm strength into game settings showing excellent carry and accuracy in live runner situations with pop times in games coming in under 2.10 on multiple occasions.  His workout pop time has been as low as 1.81.  The bat is continuing to develop.  There is power potential with an exit velocity of 95 mph off the barrel and increased barrel production over the past year.

(Bryan Arendt - FEB 2020)

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Arendt is joined by nine other 2021 grads in the top 25, the most of any one class.  Jacob Cozart (C, Wesleyan Christian), Ryan McCrystal (C, Fuquay-Varina), and Chris Katz (C, Heritage HS) are also in the top 10.  Cozart will be an interesting follow at 6-foot-3, 205 pounds.  With a big frame, the offense is ahead of the defense at this time, but the athletic tools are there for him to continue to develop as a receiver.  Out of the crouch there is carry and accuracy at 80 mph out of the hand and pop times ranging 1.88 - 2.03 in a workout setting.  The bat is big from the left side, with middle of the order potential as he continues to age up in levels.   Pending his development behind the plate, the bat should allow Cozart options to get into a batting order early at the next level.

(Jacob Cozart - FEB 2020)

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Brooks Brannon (C, Randleman HS, 2022) is the top rated uncommitted catcher in the state, checking in at No. 12 on the list.  Brannon is an excellent receiver and game manager, helping Randleman to the State Championship series as a Freshman.  The bat and arm have continued to grow in the past year and Brannon still has room to his ceiling.  As he has grown to 6-foot, 195 pounds, he has added muscle and quickness to his frame.  Offensively we saw the exit velocity jump from 93 mph off of a tee to 98 mph in 10 months.  There is barrel feel and consistency in the strike zone and Brannon has shown an ability to handle high level arms. 

(Brooks Brannon - JAN 2020)

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Top 25 Catchers


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