Spring Forward: Beach Arms to See

John Nolan
Virginia Assistant Director & Content Manager


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With 2017 officially in the books and 2018 upon us, PBR VA/DC will look ahead to the upcoming spring and the 2018 season in our Spring Forward series. In this series, we will focus primarily on players and teams that we have seen in 2017 and are looking forward to seeing again in 2018, these posts will not have anything to with prospect rankings.

Today we take a look at Beach pitchers that we are excited to see again in 2018. When we say Beach, we are generally referring to points southeast of Williamsburg, including Newport News, Norfolk, Virginia Beach, and Chesapeake.


Kris Artis RHP / Granby, VA / 2018

Artis is coming off of a strong 2017 season and showed the ability to pitch in the high 80s. An Old Dominion commit, Artis could garner some pro looks if his velocity jumps into the 90s this spring.





Reid Celata SS / Atlantic Shores Christian, VA / 2018

When we last saw Celata, he was shutting down Miller School's outstanding lineup for five innings in the VISAA Division II State Championship game. He showed consistent low 80s velocity, touching 85, and a good slider as well as a bulldog mentality that will give Shores a true ace this spring.





Scott Crosson LHP / Hickory, VA / 2020

Crosson showed the ability to sit in the 75-77 range reach 78 very early in his freshman year as well as the ability to command the strike zone with three pitches. His arm action and frame suggest there is more in the take and we look forward to checking in on his development.





Caleb Elder RHP / Great Bridge, VA / 2018

Elder is a Hampden-Sydney commit and was a big part of Great Bridge's run to the 4a State Tournament in 2017. He pitched in the low 80s in 2017 and showed feel for all three of his pitches throughout the year. Elder gives the Wildcats a potential senior ace in 2018.





Graham Firoved RHP / First Colonial, VA / 2018

Firoved is a Radford commit who got his fastball up to 91 in 2017. His lanky frame suggests there is more in the tank and he will get some pro looks this spring.





Jimmy Loper RHP / Hickory, VA / 2018

Loper had a very good 2017 as the second half of a dominant Hawks 1-2 punch in the rotation. This year he will move into the number one slot and in 2017 he demonstrated the ability to pitch in the upper 80s. With added strength this offseason, the Duke commit could jump into the 90s and garner some looks from pro scouts.





Trey Morgan LHP / Hampton, VA / 2019

We saw Morgan in the fall and he showed good pitchability from the left side with feel for three pitches, including a fastball that reached 80. His lanky frame suggests a velocity jump is in his future and Morgan has a chance to give Hampton a strong option at the top of its rotation. 





Nic Psimas RHP / Nansemond-Suffolk Academy, VA / 2019

We saw Psimas in the fall and at 6-6 he cuts an imposing figure. He has a projectable frame and sat 82-86, touching as high as 88. His breaking ball had potential but needed some work to be more consistent. His frame and arm action make him one of the most intriguing prospects in the 2019 class.





Kole Register RHP / Frank W. Cox, VA / 2018

We saw Register make a relief appearance for Cox in the 6a State Championship game and he showed a fastball that was 80-83 from a lower slot with a ton of movement. He also flashed a slider that has a chance to be a very good pitch. He has the potential to have a very good season in an expanded role for Cox in 2018.





Zachary Sanders RHP / Woodside, VA / 2018

Sanders is a VMI commit and showed the ability to pitch at 84-86 during the Commonwealth Games. He had an easy arm action that suggests there is more in his tank, more impressively he showed good feel and command of three pitches and advanced pitchability.





Jonathan Sawyers LHP / Atlantic Shores, VA / 2018

Sawyers is an Old Dominion commit and saw limited innings for Shores in 2017, but when he did pitch he dominated. He has a ton of upside and the ability to pile up strikeouts, he should join Celata as an outstanding 1-2 punch for the Seahawks as they look to return to the Division II State Title game in 2018.





Tanner Schobel SS / Walsingham Academy, VA / 2020

Schobel is a Virginia Tech commit who is still a legitimate two-way prospect. During the VISAA playoffs in 2017, he showed the ability to hit 81 and he has a chance to continue to add velocity and develop into a prospect with a big arm.





Antonio Velasquez RHP / Western Branch, VA / 2019

Velasquez has re-opened his recruiting and had a very good 2017 for the 6a State Champions. He saw a slight drop off from his 2016 velocity, working in the low 80s each time we saw him last spring from a low arm slot and showing a slider with some potential. An increase in velocity this spring will re-establish him as one of the top prospects in Virginia in the 2019 class and give Western Branch an ace as they defend their State Championship.





Gage Williams RHP / Nansemond River, VA / 2018

Injuries in 2016 thrust Williams into the Warriors' rotation earlier than expected, and his performance was a big part of Nansemond River's 5a State Championship run. Williams is a Longwood commit who is poised to have a big senior season for the Warriors. He has a tall lanky frame with plenty of projection and it will be interesting to see where he is at in his development.