Game Report: 9/9/17 - Nashville Knights 18U @ Columbia State

By: Tim Kay
PBR Tennessee Director of Scouting

On Saturday, the Nashville Knights 18U team played a doubleheader at the Columbia State Chargers.  The Knights trotted out a number of talented pitchers to face a very talented Charger offense, which revolves around speed and a couple power bats.  Below are some notes on Columbia State standouts and in depth looks at a number of different Knights standouts.

Columbia State Standouts

So. SS Adams, Haddon – 6-foot, 180-pound middle infielder is Columbia State’s top returning hitter.  Righty hits with a straight on, slightly crouched stance w/ back shoulder hand location and small bat waggle.  Toe tap w/ proper load.  Balanced w/ above average bat speed.  Gap to gap hitter w/ some pull power.  Plus runner who can leg out infield singles.  Average arm strength w/ clean actions at SS.

So. 3B Curtis, Elliot – 6-foot, 205-pound corner infielder found a lot of barrels and showed power to all fields.  The lefty hitter swings it from an open, crouched stance w/ a back shoulder hand location.  Shift of weight, toe tap and stride.  Does not get cheated at the plate w/ above avg bat speed.  Advanced approach in the box w/ a true 2 strike approach.  Power to all fields w/ an oppo triple and pulled double.  Made all the plays at 3B.

So. OF Giles, Bryce – 5-foot-10, 165-pound outfielder is loaded with tools.  Lefty hitter hits from a straight on, slightly crouched stance w/ back ear hand location.  Mini leg kick (mixes in a toe tap) w/ proper load.  Above average bat speed.  Gets a little pull heavy in his approach.  Gap to gap type hitter w/ pull HR power.  Can impact the game in so many ways w/ plus running speed (31 SB’s last year, 3.9 on push bunt) and a plus throwing arm in RF w/ carry through the target. 

So. LHP Sanders, TrevorMax FB: 87, FB (83-87), CB (N/A), CH (76)

6-1, 190-pound lefty was the top velocity for Columbia State on this day.  He generated easy velocity w/ a very quick arm.  As he learns to stay on the back side of the rubber, he will create more consistent timing for himself and allow his control to take a step forward.  He mixed in a 1-7 CB w/ okay rotation and a CH w/ fade and sink.  Big upside arm that has a chance to take a huge step forward from the fall into the spring.

Knights Pitchers

2018 RHP Sisk, Jack (Ravenwood) - Max FB: 86, FB (84-86), CB (70-73), CH (77-79)
6-3, 215-pound righty shows 3 average or better offerings w/ command of the strike zone.  Full windup w/ clean, consistent movements and H 3/4 release.  Some downhill plane w/ quick arm, easy velo.  Straight FB that has plane when located down.  Medium downer CB flashes late break w/ average depth.  Feel for strike vs. put away.  CH w/ armspeed, late sink.  Buried both he threw.  Consistent mechanics combined w/ present control should lead to above average command. Profiles as a potential starter, showcasing 3 pitches that are avg or better w/ projection and feel for the zone.

2018 RHP Maynard, John (DeKalb County) - Max FB: 87, FB (82-86), CB (68-69), CH (77)
6-1, 170-pound righty shows quick arm and feel for spin.  Full windup w/ consistent movements and H 3/4 release.  Hooks.  Front leg driven, more leg power can be accessed within the delivery (most noticeable in the stretch, where velo drops two ticks).  Really good extension let’s all his pitches play up.  FB flashes run when locates down, rides through zone when up.  Big 12-6 downer CB has some loop, but flashes tighter rotation.  More of a get ahead pitch as opposed to a put away pitch.  CH w/ armspeed, fade and sink.  Throws strikes w/ 3.  Just scratching the surface of how good he can be.  Profiles as a potential starter, showcasing 3 avg or better pitches w/ projection.

2018 RHP Steidl, Matthew (John Paul II) - Max FB: 87, FB (83-86), CB (69-72)
6-4, 170-pound long and lanky righty shows a lot of projection w/ present velo.  Full windup w/ no hand rhythm, resulting in hands breaking at the belt (breaks higher out of the stretch, resulting in easier and more consistent timing).  Front foot driven, back leg along for ride.  Gets downhill well w/ angle.  FB flashes run.  CB is a medium 12-6 downer that flashes tight rotation, late break.  Did not show CH.  Around the zone w/ feel for CB in situations.  Southern Illinois commit.

2018 RHP Petry, Seth (Siegel) - Max FB: 84, FB (80-84), CB (69-73), CH (76)
6-1, 170-pound righty shows a plus CB w/ above average control.  Full windup from over the top release.  Consistent and repeatable movements.  Understands his delivery.  Gets downhill.  FB is straight w/ some ride through the zone.  CB is plus w/ tight rotation, average depth.  Feel for strikes and as a put away pitch.  CH w/ armspeed and some sink.  Fills up the strike zone (20 of 25 for strikes), more control then command right now.  Shows ability to pitch to both sides of the plate.  Profiles as a potential starter w/ 3 avg or better pitches.

2018 RHP Hewitt, Logan (Trousdale County) - Max FB: 88, FB (83-87), CB (73-76), CH (74-76)
6-2, 190-pound righty shows arm strength w/ the top velocity of the day.  Full windup, still learning how to use his legs consistently.  Uses back leg at times, then gets front foot driven again.  Combination of landing open w/ pitching from 1st base side of rubber allows hitters to see ball well.  FB is straight.  CB is short downer.  Struggled to stay on top and maintain consistent shape/finish. CH shows potential, thrown w/ armspeed and sink.  Around the zone, more of a thrower then a pitcher right now. Big upside, just needs more reps. 

2018 RHP Descher, Josh (Brentwood Academy) - Max FB: 84, FB (81-84), CB (73), SF (74-75)
5-11, 190-pound righty shows a quick arm w/ ability to fill the strike zone.  Full windup w/ H 3/4 release.  Breaks hands at hat level w/ high glove disguising release point, increasing deception.  Leads with front hip well, lower half involved in the delivery.  Gets downhill.  FB is straight when elevated, some sink when down.  CB is medium 12-6 downer that comes up out of hand.  SF flashes dive, but inconsistent.  Pumps strikes (14 of 20), competes.  Profiles as a college pitcher that could help right away as a freshman.

Knights Position Players

2018 CIF McLaughlin, Sean (Knights Academy) - 6-2, 210-pound first basemen.  Righty hitter swung the bat extremely well, going 3 for 6 w/ a double and home run.  Slightly open, slightly crouched w/ bat resting on back shoulder.  Mini leg kick w/ proper load.  Lower half works very well, creating a lot of force at the point of contact w/ slightly above avg bat speed.  Swung and missed once on eleven swings w/ barrel feel.  Above average all-around offensive package, showing ability to recognize spin and deliver hard contact consistently.  Below avg athlete and runner, but made all the plays at 1B.  Profiles as an offensive minded 1B.

2018 C Schmitt, Blake (Page) - 6-0, 170-pound catcher.  Performed well, going 2 for 6 with a double.  Lefty hits with a slightly open, slightly crouched stance w/ back ear hand location.  Shift of weight, leg kick and proper hand load.  Controls his body with the leg kick well, repeating the height and landing spot, which is slightly open.  Lower half works well.  Above avg bat speed in an up the middle to pull heavy approach.  Hung in well against some tough lefties.  Intriguing offensive profile w/ mix of average and power.  Defensively, shows quality target w/ quiet movements.  Gets a little stabby, affecting framing ability, but shows an idea of how to move pitches.  Ok release w/ avg arm strength.  Profiles as an offensive-minded catcher.

2018 MIF Lemerand, Zac (Oakland) - 5-11, 165-pound middle infielder.  Athletic all-around type player.  RHH hits from slightly open stance w/ back ear hand location.  Short leg kick and proper load.  Small hitch as he begins his swing, as he drops his back elbow before beginning to fire the hands, creating just enough length to affect his timing.  Above avg bat speed w/ some loft in swing.  Intriguing offensive profile w/ potential mix of athleticism, bat speed and power.  Lee commit.  

2018 MIF Wilson, David (Goodpasture) - 5-10, 170-pound middle infielder.  Performed well, finding a barrel every at bat with little to show for it.  Righty hits from a straight on, slightly crouched stance w/ back ear hand location and some bat waggle.  Leg kick w/ little hand load, still head.  Gap to gap hitter who will rely on his speed to extend singles into doubles.  Barrel control w/ feel for using all fields.  Profiles as a collegiate middle infielder.

2018 MIF Rayno, Austin (Logan County, KY) – 5-10, 165-pound middle infielder.  RHH hits from open, slightly crouched stance w/ low back shoulder hand location.  Mini leg kick w/ short hand load, but hands stay low.  Lands slightly open.  Front foot hitter whose back leg is along for the ride.  Gap to gap offensive profile.  Defensively, a true SS w/ avg range, soft hands and above avg arm strength.  Profiles as a defense first SS.

2018 C Whitten, Brennan (Ravenwood) - 6-0, 185-pound catcher.  Righty hitter hits from a slightly open, very slightly crouched stance w/ back ear hand location.  Stride w/ proper load.  Inconsistent lower half timing, as he did a double stride and a toe tap in addition to the normal stride.  Lands slightly open.  Above avg bat speed, but really struggled w/ timing due to lower half.  Aggressive approach, likes the ball up in the zone.  At his best, offensively profiles as a gap to gap type hitter w/ some pull power.  Defensively, presents a great target, makes himself big behind the plate.  Athletic receiver w/ soft hands, idea of framing.  Moves well behind the plate w/ ability to pounce on bunts.  Potential for avg arm strength.  Profiles as an all-around type catcher. 

2018 OF Petzelt, Matthew (Columbia Academy) - 5-11, 150-pound outfielder.  Performed well, going 3 for 5 with a walk.  Righty hitter hits from a slightly open, very slightly crouched stance w/ back shoulder hand location.  Shift of weight w/ knee to knee stride and very short hand load.  Lands slightly open.  Rhythm hitter w/ still head allows him to make consistent contact.  Gap to gap hitter who relies on his speed to leg out doubles.  Line drive machine. Defensively, played an above average CF w/ projectable avg arm strength, above avg runner underway.  Profiles as an all-around CF. 

2018 OF Jeans, Kaleb (Columbia Academy) - 5-11, 165-pound outfielder.  Lefty hitter performed well, going 3 for 5 with a double and a hit by pitch.  Open, very slightly crouched w/ back shoulder hand location and slight bat waggle.  Leg kick w/ proper load.  Lands slightly closed.  Gap to gap offensive profile.  Likes to look for opportunities to bunt for hits.  Clean, consistent swing w/ limited movement.  High contact, bat control type offensive player.  Defensively, showed slightly below avg arm strength in the outfield, but clean arm action suggests future avg arm strength.  Made all the plays in the OF, but was not tested.  Profiles as an all-around type OF.

2018 C Escobar, Beaux (Independence) - 6-0, 215-pound catcher.  Switch hitter is better from the left side.  LH - hits from open, slightly crouched stance w/ bat either resting on shoulder or out in front of body.  Leg kick to slightly open landing w/ high hands location.  Hands have slight hitch with moving up slightly, creating swing length.  RH - hits from open, upright stance w/ back shoulder hands location.  Leg kick lands open w/ hips opening too early, limiting plate coverage.  Hand load is cleaner, but still a slight moving up of the hands to create a little length.  Power over average player offensively w/ some swing and miss.  Defensively, shows enough athleticism to stay behind the plate.  Presents quality target for pitcher w/ ability to box balls.  Gets a little stabby and locked out as a receiver, limiting framing ability, though easy fix.  2.15-2.22 pop w/ avg footwork, arm strength. Profiles as a power hitting catcher providing average defense.