PBR Classic - Top Uncommitted Arms
June 21, 2022
The 2022 PBR Classic contained a stable of some exceptionally electric uncommitted arms from all over the country. It makes you realize how well the game is growing nation wide when you see players with future draft potential still looking for a college to call home as upperclassmen.
This article will offer you an in depth analysis on 8 pitchers mechanics, repertoires, what they can improve on, and what makes them special. The names in this list will only grow in recognition and reputation with time, and we can’t wait to keep track of how they develop.
Zachary Hernandez, RHP, 2023, Lincoln County, TN (Knights-South)
Uncommitted. The 6 foot 2, 175 pounder throws absolute wiffle balls from his lengthy, wiry strong build. He’s patient over rubber & holds backside bend as he works downhill. The arm speed, timed up separation, and connection at landing are all there for the TN righty, and he can improve much more as a pitcher with some small delivery adjustments. His unique yet healthy arm action is a big reason he produces rare spin on his FB & CB - It's a short, efficient arm stroke, but what happens as the arm gets into throwing position is different. He angles his forearm & wrist behind his head at landing, creating serious torque. As he works to his release point the elbow & wrist spiral, creating a vicious snap in the wrist as the ball leaves his hand - resulting in a ridiculous amount spin, creating illusion to hitters eyes. The FB at 86-87 T89 plays well up in the zone with A/AVG or better ride, but is just as tough to square up low in the zone due to rotating at 2600 rpm. Hernandez’ sweeping CB is one of the best in the southeast for his class, bending air at 71-73 w/ 3200 rpm!! It hovers above the zone spinning relentlessly until it suddenly snaps, getting unreal depth. This is a steal for any college in the country at this point.
Nate Gross, LHP, 2023, Little Rock Christian, AR (Sticks Baseball)
Uncommitted. At 6 foot, 165 pounds stands a lefty lightning bolt with a slender build and long limbs. A player's ceiling can be high without prototype size, which is the case here. Gross produces violent arm speed with little effort and a flick of the wrist, well before maxing out his physical strength. Add in rhythm & timing as well as good balance, and you’ve got an arm that's at the tip of the iceberg velocity wise. Nate controls his body well despite a slight crossfire that adds angle+deception to his clean, full Hi 3/4 AA. Nate’s FB was 85-87 T90 gradual cut glove side, sink+tail arm side. The pitch gets lots of swing & miss up in the zone, and produces a variety of grounders and fly outs in the bottom of the zone. The SL/CB hybrid is 75-77 tight+short+late depth arm side for strikes. He can also bury it glove side where it will get more sweep across the zone and extra depth. His CH in the upper 70’s is a downer, dropping below the zone last second with late sink. A few years down the road we could be looking at one of the most explosive LHP in the country.
Pete Jezerinac, LHP, 2024, Kennesaw Mountain, GA (Nelson Baseball School)
Uncommitted. The 6 foot 2, 155 pounder pitches with a very high tempo that constricts a hitters approach quickly each AB. He has a near perfect arm action for repeatability of all pitches - mid depth, 1 piece, short but full arm stroke from a H ¾ slot. As soon as he toes the rubber he starts his delivery, also wasting little time between pitches. This would be tough to repeat with a longer arm action. Pete stays extremely patient and connected over the rubber and stays tall with the bend of his back knee, creating a downhill plane to go with his unique angle. He commands his 84-86 T87 turbo sinker on the outer edge with late tail early in the count to RHH, putting them behind 0-2 before they can blink. They either bash it into the ground foul or swing & miss. Then you’re at the mercy of his late fading bugs bunny CH at 76-77, and there aren’t many as good in the southeast for his class. But that's not all, he also possesses a sweeping low 70’s SLV with 2 plane snap that he can locate to both edges. Jezerinac’s trio of repeatability, pitchability, and projection are very hard to find.
Samuel Albee, RHP, 2023, Fellowship Christian, GA (Outlaws)
Uncommitted. Albee held a very impressive Arkansas Sticks team to just one hit in 5 innings of work. Albee stands a whopping 6’5 230lbs and is an intimidating presence on the mound. For a guy of his stature, he moves extremely well. Stretch only delivery with a short arm circle and 3/4 arm action. Upper half stays connected in stride. Level shoulders with minimal head movement allow him to keep good direction to the plate just before front foot strike. Collapses front side when going into rotation which is preventing him from essentially getting the “most” out of his lower half. Landing more firmly on front leg and working to lock out as he releases would allow Albee to extend his upper half over his front foot which would play up his FB & SL - visually to hitters, and stuff wise.The FB currently sits 85-88 and touches 91mph with occasional sink/run. The SL, the better of the two breaking balls, flashes good shape/depth at 75-78 and can even hover around 80mph. The SL shows late horizontal bite. The CB which sits in the low 70’s can act more as a “get me over” pitch, but has proven to receive uncomfortable swings and weak contact. Overall the ceiling for Albee is a power arm who will be given the chance to start in college, but could wind up as a closer with a pretty exciting 2 pitch mix as he continues to develop both the FB and SL.
Dylan Alonso, RHP, 2023, Rabun Gap, GA (Southeast Sox)
Uncommitted. There are few players in the country that look like this proportionally chiseled 6 foot 4, 208 pounder on the mound. Neither are there many players with as much arm speed or projection. Although raw, Alonso’s delivery is well balanced with a gradual build up of pace - which is one of the biggest keys to an effortless delivery. He’s starting to ride the back side down the mound with his upper half, creating more connection at landing with his lightning quick short circle AA (¾ slot). Nothing in the lower half needs adjustment other than coming straight up with his lift knee, for better hip/shoulder separation at landing. Alonso’s FB reached 92 in both PBR Classic outings. The pitch bores in on RHH up in the zone, and runs away from lefties. Down in the zone it's on a steep plane with run & sink that induces grounders. His 72-73 CB has tight rotation and 2 plane bang and will flash A/AVG overall. The life and depth are consistently there, but the direction and control are still developing. This is a dream fit for a program keen on projection. He’s already got D1 offers, and even one as a two-way player!
Carson Morton, RHP, 2023, West Stanley, NC (Next Level Baseball)
Uncommitted. Morton was not afraid to establish the heater during his outing at the PBR Classic. FB was 85-87 and touched 88mph multiple times with ride. It is a short 3/4 arm action that creates a lot of deception to the opposing lineup. Hides the ball extremely well and the FB seemed to surprise hitters at times. Stays connected through his lower half the entire way down the mound. Super aggressive front side as he explodes into rotation. Flashed a CB and CH. CB sat in the low 70’s with late 2 plane break. The command of the pitch as well as the “feel” for the pitch could improve due to repeatable release height/angle. CH was thrown primarily to LHH in the mid-upper 70’s with slight fade/depth. It is an efficient mover with a sneaky FB who’s offspeed weapons will continue to improve as he gets older. Starter profile with a lot of room to grow.
Philip Schiltz, RHP, 2023, Cartersville, GA (Southeast Sox)
Uncommitted. The 6 foot 3, 185 pounder with broad shoulders, high waist, and long levers is one of the most athletic players in the 2023 class. He’s a dual sport athlete that can just as easily moss a defensive back in the end zone as strikeout a big time hitter. He also kicks nukes as the punter for his high school. With a smooth & balanced delivery, Philip creates effortless arm speed and unique angle from a lengthy 1 piece arm action (low ¾ slot). He works downhill through his delivery and gets unreal hip/shoulder separation at landing, meaning he will jump in velo as he adds strength. He gets great extension on his running FB (85-85 T88), using his stride and long limbs to play up the pitch hitters. The pitch will ride up in the zone, run and sink down and will be a serious weapon as the velo jumps and he develops command of it. Schiltz 75-77 SLV is special at 2500 rpm and has wipeout potential with sharp lateral break & late depth. It stays on FB plane then takes a sudden turn, slicing through the air like a frisbee before falling off the planet. Schiltz led the Sox as a starter within 2 outs of a PBR Classic Championship berth, and is easily one of the most underrated arms in Georgia.
Luke Earnhardt, LHP, Rabun Gap, GA (Southeast Sox)
Uncommitted. The baby faced 6 foot 1, 205 pounder has a large frame and strong build. He’s also a hooper who repeats his shot from 3 point range just as well as he repeats his ++ delivery. It’s the cleanest, easiest one you’ll find. So much so that he regularly blows his 84-86 T88 FB by hitters, showing shocking arm speed with incredible ease of operation. Luke has great balance and consistent pace with a gradual buildup of momentum. His mechanics are perfectly sequenced - rhythm of the glove & knee as they lift and separate, upper half stays connected with backside over rubber, smooth up+down+out in stride, and the lower half works to lock out at the same pace of his arm. The arm action is a full circle, 1 piece from low 3/4 slot that creates ridiculous deception and decelerates well. FB 85-86 T88 (23-2400 rpm) bore up in zone, tail down. Sweeping CB 69-72 (2600 rpm) CH 71 fade. He went 4 INN, 7 K’s, with no walks and 1 hit in the PBR Classic and is drawing interest from many good programs.