'High-Level Talent' Shines At Preseason All-State Event
March 17, 2020
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'High-Level Talent' Shines At Preseason All-State Event
DEARBORN - More than 100 high school players from across the state participated in Saturday’s Michigan Preseason All-State event at Elite Sports Training Facility.
Nine players committed to in-state schools were in attendance, including three going to Michigan State, while 11 other participants have made their college decisions. Vanderbilt, Auburn, Alabama, TCU, Xavier, Jacksonville, West Virginia, Marshall, Butler, Army and Mesa CC future players were in the field that had 133 total participants, more than half that pitched with a couple dozen that were pitchers-only.
“I thought the event was awesome,” pointed out Owen Carapellotti (video below), a U of D Jesuit junior who was a participant at last summer’s Future Games. “I saw plenty of my friends there which lightened the mood, but being able to connect with the guys running it made it that much easier. There was some great competition and I’m honored to have been chosen to compete with those players.”
Some were there for the second year in a row.
“Overall, the event was great,” explained Mark Kattula, a Stevenson senior back at the event after being part of the 2019 Preseason All-State. “Being able to showcase my skills along with many other top prospects in the state was very exciting and very humbling.”
“The event was a blast, it was fun and went really well,” noted Schubert, a Michigan commit and the top-rated sophomore in Michigan. “I love going to PBR events, and all in all it went really well.”
Added Locker: “It was a little different this year since I wasn’t doing two-way. I just focused on pitching and trying to improve my numbers. The highlights were seeing all my buddies and having fun.”
A few were there with siblings.
“My brother Ryan and I had a great experience,” noted Jack Jones, a University of Liggett ninth grader whose twin participated as well. “We saw several teammates and friends from other teams. We also had a chance to watch several of the top older players in the state perform.”
Others were also happy to enjoy the experience of playing with some of the best high school players the state of Michigan has to offer.
“I thought the event was well organized and thoughtfully planned out,” related Jake Dresselhouse, one of nine from the program at Orchard Lake St. Mary’s Prep. “With 100-plus athletes, there really wasn’t a lot of standing around.”
Added Grant Reising (video below), a Divine Child junior: “I thought the showcase was run very well. There was a clear system that allowed players to efficiently show their ability without wasting the players’ or parents’ time.”
A few just started attending PBR events within the last year.
“It was a great camp that was put together very well and organized,” explained Cody Hultink, a Pennfield junior. “The competition was outstanding and it really gave me an idea of where I stand related to other players in Michigan.”
Micah Ottenbreit, a junior at Trenton, perhaps summed it up as well as anyone.
“The event was very well run with a lot of high-level talent,” Ottenbreit said. “It was a very good way for me to kick off the season.”
Sneak peek of some of the arms from Pre Season All State. A lot of talent on display. Multiple guys hitting 90 mph or higher 🔥. @JoeOttenbreit @SzczepaniakRyan @averymona221 @BranMann34 @NolanSchubart @davidlally55 @johnlocker44 @FletcherWhitley pic.twitter.com/4uPQEhnWLd— Prep Baseball Report Michigan (@PrepbaseballM) March 10, 2020
Ottenbreit was one of the standouts on the mound, with the 10th-ranked 2021 in the state recording the top velocity of 92.
“I was hoping to hit 90 or higher on the gun and I did,” the Michigan State commit said of his goal coming into the event. “The highlights for me were my fastball velocity and command and also the placement of my off-speed pitches.”
Locker was tied for the second-best velo at 90, a speed equaled by Avery Mona (video below) of U of D Jesuit and Schubert.
“I battled with a buddy velo-wise and I showed what I can do,” noted Locker, who a year ago at the event had the top outfield velo of 96 while running a 6.88 but this year only participated as a pitcher. “I showed what I can do and we all had fun.”
Schubert, a two-way participant, had the best velo among sophomores with a 90 on the gun.
“I was happy with my scores and what I was able to get,” said the 6-5, 210-pound Michigan commit, who also was among the best off the tee with a 95 exit velo.
Brandon Hunsaker (video below) was second among 2022 pitchers with a fastball touching 89.
“The highlight for me was being number two in three out of four events for the class of 2022,” explained the Almont sophomore, a 6-0 190-pound pitcher/third baseman who had a 96 exit velo and 89 position velo.
Reising was one of the breakout players after the 81st-rated junior led all left-handed pitchers with an 85 mph fastball.
“I was happy to hit my goal of 85 off the mound,” noted Reising, who also had personal-bests in the 60 (7.00) and exit velo (87)
STRONG WITH THE BAT
Guys brought the lumber out during the Pre Season All State. #BeSeen— Prep Baseball Report Michigan (@PrepbaseballM) March 10, 2020
@Nicktraf3 @drcanterberry2 @codyhultink @CamMallegg @ocarp3 @aaron_piasecki @anthony17migs @markkattula25 pic.twitter.com/bAkxF5BDHW
Kattula had the top exit velo of all the participants, with the Eastern Michigan commit just missing the coveted number of 100 by one.
“My main highlight of the event was hitting an all-time personal best of 99 off the tee with a wood bat,” pointed out the 10th-ranked senior in the state of Michigan.
Hultink was right behind with a 98 while New Iothrop sophomore Brady Birchmeier (video below) was at 97.
Pitching standouts also showed well with the bats. Hunsaker and Schubert recorded exit velos of 96 to equal some of the other big-time hitters like the Country Day duo of senior Anthony Migliaccio and sophomore Brandon Mann.
“My goals were to accomplish 7 seconds in the 60 and I ran 7.03, 98 exit velo and I hit 96 and 90 across the field and I threw 89,” said Hunsaker, the eighth-rated 2022 in the state. “I also wanted to pitch 90 and I threw 89.”
Schubert managed to reach a pair of goals.
“I was hoping to hit 90 on the mound and hit 95 off of the tee and I was able to accomplish that,” Schubert noted.
Behind the plate, Carapellotti and Dresselhouse were two of the standouts. The U of D Jesuit junior had the best pop time of 1.89, while the Orchard Lake St. Mary’s Prep sophomore was next with a 1.94.
“That was easily my best time ever,” the 6-2, 195-pound Carapellotti said of his pop time. “I also felt very solid behind the plate as I was catching some familiar arms. My confidence was through the roof and my success continued throughout the day.”
Dresselhouse, the 11th-ranked 2022 in Michigan, was solid from beginning to end.
“I just wanted to showcase my talents and put forth my best effort to be invited to the 2020 Future Games in August,” explained Dresselhouse, who also had a 78 catching velo to go along with 90 exit and 82 infield velo. “I feel like I accomplished what I needed to do.”
Carter Campau (video below), a sophomore at Midland Bullock Creek, had the best catcher velocity at 81
Senior Jake Jekielek, of Sterling Heights Stevenson, led the way with an infield velo of 93 while Migliaccio, a junior Vanderbilt commit, added to an impressive overall day with easily the top velocity in the outfield at 94.
SPEED TO BURN
A number of participants displayed speed that will likely draw attention at the next level led by Hultink with a time of 6.54.
“I was hoping to beat all my numbers from prior events,” noted the 6-0, 170-pounder ranked 29th among juniors in the state. “I did beat my infield velocity and also my 60 time. Those were my highlights.”
Dresselhouse had the top time in the 2022 class and second best overall at 6.55.
“Running the 60 was the highlight of the event for me,” Dresselhouse said. “Not only was it my personal best, but was the time to beat at the event.”
“The staff made it very clear that you could do anything to prepare yourself before you ran the 60 and take as much time as you needed to prepare and run your hardest,” explained Purify, the second-ranked freshman in Michigan. “If you were not satisfied with your first run you could run again and keep running until you were satisfied. I believe that was helpful because the staff actually verbally told you your results as soon as the running was over so that either satisfied you or pushed you to beat it.
“I feel like it pushed me every time to beat the time I got before, so I feel it was a great idea to give our results back immediately.”
Purify (video below) was one of a number of players to make a name for themselves in the 2023 class. The left-handed hitting freshman not only ran 6.65 in the 60, but the 5-10, 160-pounder also had solid numbers in exit velo (85) and infield velo (80).
“I liked every part of the event,” Purify said. “The main thing I hoped to accomplish was to improve all-around and I feel like I accomplished my goal. I improved in every category and I hope to continue improving as I go along.”
Jacob Brown, a West Virginia commit from Greenhills, had the best exit velo among freshmen with 88, tying Noah Miller of Monroe, while also producing the leading infield velocity of 86. Evan Langlois, of Woodhaven, and Ryan Mooney, of Orchard Lake St. Mary’s, were others from the 2023 class faring well, tying for best outfield velo at 82 while Langlois was at 86 with exit velo and Mooney at 6.83 in the 60.
Jack Jones (video below), of University Liggett, stood among the best freshmen in attendance with a fastball clocked at 85 while also displaying a curve, change and slider. In addition, the 6-3, 175-pounder ranked 17th among Michigan ninth graders, had an exit velo of 86.
“I accomplished my PBR pitching goals and I was close to my target of 90 on my hitting exit velo,” explained Jones, who rehabbed most of last season after a football injury. “I hit my spots with four different pitches and my fastball was 85 with a low of 84. My wood bat exit velo was 86 and I hit 90 in practice the day before with my wood bat.”
By the time the event ended, so many of those in attendance were pleased with what they achieved.
“The goal I wanted to accomplish was to simply get better,” Carapellotti said. “I wanted to beat my previous numbers, and the work I put in over the offseason paid off. I’m glad to say that I reached my goals and replaced all of my previous bests with new ones.”
Being part of such an event left memories for those that participated.
“It was fun to meet Mr. Wilson again and to work with him and his staff in the live hitting cage,” Jones said. “We also really like how fast we finished all of our stations. We were in and out in less than two hours.”
Reising enjoyed making new acquaintances.
“One thing I like about these showcases, PBR or otherwise, are the other players and coaches,” Reising related. “The players are so easy to talk to and friendly that creates a really fun environment to compete in because everybody is cheering for each other and then competing to beat you.”
Purify sees being part of more events in his future.
“PBR has welcomed me and I’m very satisfied with the way the event was organized and how welcoming and encouraging the staff is to players,” the freshman infielder said. “I heard nothing but encouragement from them and I just loved the energy and vibe they bring everytime I do a PBR event. I would highly recommend PBR for any player looking for a way to get on the map.”
Hunsaker sees that as true after receiving an invitation to another PBR event.
“The biggest goal I had overall was to make the Future Games,” the Almont sophomore said. “When I was walking out a staff member came up to me and gave me an invite to the Future Games. I am so happy and very satisfied what I have achieved
“To go to the next level I know I have to keep practicing and keep a positive attitude. Thank you to everybody and coach Eddie (DeWalt) and Aaron Wilson for giving me positive words to keep me motivated.”