Prep Baseball Report

2023 Top 10 Prospects (Utah Winter Update)

Jeff Scholzen
Utah Scouting Director


The summer is complete, and now it’s time to reveal a class of players that goes well beyond the top 10, of which many after 10, could have been in the top 10 rankings. This class I’ve been following since many of them were 9-10 years old, as many played with or against my son, giving me a unique advantage in getting to know these players, not only as ballplayers, but as young men. Many of these players were members of the first ever Team Utah, that represented the Beehive state at the prestigious Future Games at LakePoint Sports in GA, the last weekend of July. This class is as deep a college prospect class as I’ve seen in quite some time from the state, and it wouldn’t surprise me if a few reached beyond the collegiate level. With 2 years of high school left with this class, this class not only are making names for themselves right now, but could be doing some special things individually and for their teams when they are seniors. This will be a fun class to follow moving forward! ENJOY ....

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Ryder Robinson SS / 2B / American Fork, UT / 2023


Commitment: Texas Christian U (TCU)

A Future Games participant and stole the show according to Shooter Hunt on workout day. Team Utah was hurt by a late start and we got started around 10pm to hit and most coaches had called it a night, but Ryder stepped in and barreled balls to the allies with 92 mph EV’s with a crisp, fluid, yet slightly uphill smooth stroke from both sides of the plate. The swings looked like a mirror was flipped, as he had the same virtual look on both sides of the plate. Barreled balls in all directions. In the game he showed defensively like the workout, with educated feet and soft hands in playing ground up and out front with a fringe to avg, but accurate on line arm. The defense looks a bit like a 16 yr old version of former UNLV 1st Rd pick Bryson Stott and former 5th Rd ASU pick Gage Workman (who I drafted out of HS). The game clock is slow and even though the slew of over 300 college coaches, of which were baring down on us, Ryder didn’t let any moment get too big. He took vicious cuts at cripple count FB’s that he just missed in fouling straight back to the screen. Tough with 2 K’s, Robinson was tough to put away as he has plus hand/eye to spoil pitches and spit on tough pitches for quality takes. 

Cole Kershaw 1B / 3B / Jordan, UT / 2023


Commitment: Utah

MaxPreps 6A Utah Player of the Year

6A Triple Crown Leader

The best power bat of any class in the state.

3/6/21 - The biggest jump of all the players from the previous event and Cole put on a show with the bat. This is the kind of bat that draws attention from events like this. Will be on the radar in short order. Hits from a semi open and wide stance and waggles and bounces the bat for rhythm and timing over this back shoulder. Brings the bat to a stop from a high elbow and hits from a semi dead hand position, but it doesn’t take away from his power or the ability to get the bat started and whistle it through the zone. Scoring in the top 5 of bat speed, and rotational acceleration, as well as the 3rd highest exit velo of 99.23, Kershaw also had the events best avg distance of 342 ft and blasted one ball 405 ft over the RCF monster net. It was one of 3-4 he hit over the net during BP, and only one ball has been hit in a game over the net, since the ballpark was built a handful of years ago. Was a good day for Mr. Kershaw!

Ryker Schow OF / 2B / Pleasant Grove, UT / 2023


Commitment: Brigham Young U (BYU)


An All-Future Team recognition in LakePoint was well deserved, as he was the catalyst for Team Utah with an high contact 1 and 2 hitter in front of him, Schow would see runners on and double down on the focus and no moment got too big for him. After a 4-4 performance with 3 RBI in Game one, Schow notched 5 hits with 2 2B’s and made all the plays in RF, but it was a play with runners in scoring position playing CF, that he ranges into RCF and left his feet on a slide and made a very nice catch that prevented runs from scoring. Ryker drew interest from a couple of PAC 12 schools and a Big West school at the Future Games, along with a couple of in state offers in tow, however in the end, Schow decided to stay in his backyard to play for the BYU Cougars! 

Tyler Ball RHP / Skyridge, UT / 2023


Commitment: Stanford

Area Code Underclass Alum '21 - Have seen him a number of times since he was 13. Plays for a very good HS coach, who was a former BYU recruiting coordinator for over a decade. Features a Lg lean athletic build, that’s tapered into a lower ½ that’s getting stronger and filling out. 16 years old and 602 195 and projects another 15 Lbs at maturity. Tyler has a classic side step to start a synced up med kick to a solid overall operation. Really uses his legs while featuring a drop/drive delivery from a HTQ loose, live arm stroke. Gets good ext out front and finishes pitches. The FB 88-94 shows control to move the ball in/out to all 4 quadrants. Delivery and feel to have command in time. The CB 76-78 takes on some TQ SLV type action and show the makings of a solid to plus pitch moving forward. The CH 78-80 shows feel to sink, while maintaining arm speed. Will be fun to watch him grow and mature over the next 2 years.

Billy Bird 1B / LHP / Timpanogos, UT / 2023


Commitment: Utah

A Future Games participant with good size and present and projectable strength. A two way type that is being recruited as such. It starts with big pull side juice from the 1B position and he has some natural lift and ext to drive the ball to all parts of the field. He will have all fields power when all is said and done. Right now it plays straight away to the pull side and he had a very good sophomore season with the bat. The arm is the intriguing part as he has a little Mark Mulder feel to him. The delivery is a raise the leg and tuck the front shoulder with a late shoulder turn out front. The arm swing is low TQ and with some length and whip. He gets to a full finish out front and does have some spin out at times, but is correctable. The FB was 83-86 at LakePoint, but have seen 88 in the spring. The FB has some late natural sink and the CB sweeps. The CH is the weapon as he can kill spin and shows FB arm speed to create deception. The CH dives and has some turnover effect in the bottom part of the zone. One of the better two way guys out there. 

Grant Scholzen SS / 2B / Hurricane, UT / 2023


Commitment: U of the Pacific

Scholzen had another strong showing, during the workout phase. With one of the better mechanically sound swings in the state, regardless of class. After posting hand speed and bat speeds of 24.6 and 78.3 at the Future Games in GA, Scholzen posted 24 and 73.6 at the recent All-State Games w/an EV of 91.4. Defensively he surrounds the ball and creates solid angles to be in position to create a line to his target with soft hands and educated feet and enough arm for short stints at SS at the next level, but should settle in as an offensive 2B. Is a catalyst at the plate with a keen understanding of controlling the K zone, and shows abv avg pitch recognition. 

Cameron Nielson RHP / SS / Cottonwood, UT / 2023


Commitment: Utah

A Future Games and West Coast Games participant, Nielsen went to LakePoint as a pitcher only and drew attention with his easy loose arm that was up to 88 three weeks ago. But we took him to Las Vegas for the inaugural WCG’s as a two way type, to play SS/3B and again take his turn on the mound. As a hitter, Cameron put up the best peak bat speed at 83.2 along with a 99.15 EV in the workout at LakePoint. At the WCG’s Nielson put together a strong defensive showing in game play and made all the plays with his strong (87 mph) arm across the INF. At the plate, he was a bit rusty as he has been on the mound for about a month vs the “dirt”, but he hit two well struck balls through the right side of the INF. Was also able to see him at a college prospect camp last weekend in Utah, and he stung a couple of pulled balls, with one a “screamer” right at the 3B that was caught on a line. The arm on mound once again drew significant interest in Las Vegas as he was 84-88 T89 with an easy delivery and showing the type of fluidity to the delivery that will be a low 90’s arm by next spring and maybe a big arm by his senior year in 2023. 

Brayden Marx RHP / Pleasant Grove, UT / 2023


Commitment: Uncommitted

A Future and West Coast Games participate, which he has attracted college interest in each event. Marx has that wiry twitch at 6-0 165 with a loose arm. He has a high knee kick to his delivery with the lower leg extended out and features a medium compact HTQ arm stroke. The arm is quick and short through the window and gets solid ext out front. The ball exits his hand clean with the FB 86-88 at both the Future and West Coast Games. Brayden touched 90 at the Summer ID event 2 weeks before the Future Games, however the separator with Marx is the CB 71-73 registered a 2717 spin rate, which is the highest in the state. The pitch is a plus pitch and he can locate it and land it in the zone, while burying it late in the count for swing and misses. The ceiling is high, and as he continues to fill out and add strength with maturity, the velocity should jump into the low 90’s before he’s out of HS. I really like this kid’s stuff now and his future potential!

Petey Soto Jr. SS / OF / Crimson Cliffs , UT / 2023


Commitment: Dixie State U

A Future Games alum - A slick fielding INF at 5-10 145, has a lean, even proportion frame with abv avg athleticism and can play all 9 spots on the Diamond. Soto can handle 3 INF spots along with CF and makes all look as if it’s his primary spot. A quick twitch live lower allows for graceful defensive actions and his feet/hands have a chance to play abv avg in time. His hands are smooth/quick and he plays from the ground up, while syncing his hands and feet, in getting off strong accurate throws across the diamond. The arm is avg by MLB standards now and will definitely be plus in the near future. A 60 yard dash time of 6.94 should improve even more over the next few years, as he fills out and continues to add size and leg strength. The bat has some Latin type flair in that he can be a free swinger and then also grind out an AB and spray LD’s to all fields. With a young immature body now, Soto can lift it out to the pull side when he squares it up. A conventional RH even props square stance, he gets quality separation and takes an aggressive, but lengthy pass at the baseball, with a fast bat. It will be fun to see where the versatile, athletic, flashy INF takes his game in the future.

Maddax Peck RHP / OF / Bingham, UT / 2023


Commitment: Uncommitted

An athletic two way stud, that could develop either way in CF or on the mound, as he shows a fluid on line bat with hand speed and bat speeds of 20 and 67, though shows big EV’s of 93 and ran a 6.93/60 at the All-State Games. It was a catch in CF during the game that drew raves, as he leaped and crashed into the wall in dead center for a spectacular play. On the mound and with some time off, he reached 86, but has been up to 88 during the summer. The delivery is clean and the HTQ arm stroke is pure. As scouts say, “smooth and easy, gets better faster”. Look for big things to come for the newest entry into the upcoming Top 10 rankings!