Houston Athletics Scout Day: Quick Hits

Toby Bicknell
Texas Scouting Director

HOUSTON, TX - Prep Baseball Report Texas had the opportunity to attend the Houston Athletics Scout Day on Sunday, November 12. Here are some quick-hit thoughts from that event.

+ This was our second look of the fall at 2020 3B/RHP Levi Wells (LaPorte HS). He is a confident player with outstanding presence on the field and a sturdy frame at 6-foot, 185-pounds. Wells has quick footwork at third base, he plays through the ball with soft hands and fluid rhythm. Hi arm works well out front and shows carry and accuracy that should allow him to stay on the left side of the infield. At the plate, the right-handed hitter has easy rhythm, loose-quick hands and a fluid swing that produces strong contact as the barrel stays in the zone a long time. As soon as the positional workout was done, Wells was the first player on the mound ready to throw his bullpen. His fastball got up to 85 mph, sitting mostly 82-84 mph. His best off speed pitch was a his changeup that he threw with good arm speed and arm side fade at 72-73 mph. Also has a still-developing curveball that has 11/5 shape at 64-66 mph. Look for big things from Wells in the future.

+ 2019 3B/RHP Mark Gomez (LaPorte HS) has a strong, thick, muscular frame at 5-foot-11, 205-pounds. A right-handed hitter, Gomez showed power to the pull side during batting practice, including hitting a home run. He has soft hands and quickish footwork at third base. On the mound, the right-hander works from a high slot with his four-seam fastball showing downward tilt at 83-85 mph. Also throws a two-seamer from more of a ¾ slot with arm side sink at 82. Gomez's slider has sharp lateral action and 10/4 shape and late break at 74-75 mph.

+ A number of catchers stood out during the workout, including 2020 C/RHP Dylan Bobo (Ridge Point HS), who threw strikes to second base at 74 mph with pop times of 1.94, 1.94, 1.97, 2.04, and 2.19. 2019 C Vicente Robledo (Pearland HS) has a quick-twitch frame at 5-foot-8, 185-pounds. The right-handed hitter has quick hands at the plate and generates some lift to the pull side with an exit velocity of 89 mph. Behind the plate, Robledo had consistent pop times ranging from 2.0-2.11. 2020 C/RHP Mauriel Zavala (Alief Taylor HS) showed solid arm strength (77 mph) and accuracy, while posting pop times of 2.03, 2.03, 2.09, and 2.11. 2021 C/RHP Luke Thrutchley (Logos Prep) has a lean-strong frame at 6-foot, 160-pounds. He has a quick exchange and shows true carry to second base with pop times of 2.0, 2.0, 2.04, 2.07, 2.11. A right-handed hitter, Thrutchley has quick hands and shows strength at contact with an exit velocity of 84 mph.

+ 2021 C/3B Brandon Nelson (Ridge Point HS) put on a show during batting practice, blasting several home runs deep to right-field. Nelson has a strong, projectable frame at 5-foot-10, 165-pounds. The left-handed hitter shows good feel for the barrel with the ability to drive the ball (86 mph). He starts from a tall, neutral stance, uses a low-hanging leg kick to load, quick hips as he rotates to contact, short path, loose hack, strong top hand, high finish.  Behind the plate, Nelson threw 75 mph from the crouch with pop times ranging from 2.09-2.21.

+ 2020 RHP/SS Rome Shubert (Santa Fe HS) has a projectable, long-limbed frame at 6-foot, 156-pounds. The right-hander works from a high-¾ slot with a short, quick arm stroke. His fastball has arm side life and sink, sitting mostly 85 mph, dipping only a couple of times to 82-83 mph. Although his off speed stuff is still developing, look for Shubert to continue to make jumps throughout the high school season.

+ 2019 SS Braden Norris (Pearland HS) has an athletic, lean frame at 6-foot, 150-pounds. The right-handed hitter has good rhythm with a relaxed leg kick and loose hands. Nice actions at shortstop, has quick footwork, mid-line exchange, quick transfer, and can throw from different slots.

+ 2019 OF David Amaya (Dobie HS) has an athletic frame at 6-foot-2, 175-pounds. The junior had a solid all-around performance. He ran a 7.02 60-yard dash, made accurate throws from the outfield at 81 mph, and posted an exit velocity of 89 mph.

+ Worth noting, 2020 OF/1B Christopher Smith (Elkins HS) ran the best 60 time (6.99) of the day, but also stuck his nose into every low/short-hop throw at first base during the infield workout. He picked a lot of them, but also took multiple hops off the body, including one right off his chest - didn't flinch.

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