Prep Baseball Report

An Early Look At The 2016 Season

By Steve Nielsen and Matt Huck
PBR Wisconsin Staff

This spring season the scouting community will get familiar with the Wisconsin highway system as several pro scouts will be pounding the pavement in the Badger State chasing several of the state’s top seniors. On top of that there are several high interest matchups to circle on your calendar and our staff has put together a few highlights to look for.

April 1

Indian Trail vs. Arrowhead

Last year this game was one of the most highly anticipated matchups of the year (game story) and this season will be no different, albeit with more on the line. This will be one of the first opportunities for scouts to get an in game look at Gavin Lux. Scouts will be looking forward to a possible matchup against one of Arrowheads top arms, a matchup against RHP Nathan Brown would pack the stands and give scouts an opportunity to see him versus premium pitching.

April 8-9

The annual Woodside High School Challenge is back for 2016 and features teams from each division. The Division I side includes Eau Claire Memorial, Stoughton, Eau Claire North, New Richmond, Wausaw West, and Union Grove.

April 23

Vernona  vs. Arrowhead (DH)

Just as high interest as the Indian Trail game, this game will be a matchup Verona’s Ben Rortvedt against one of Arrowheads premium arms in Nathan Brown or Ryan Schmitt. A double header matchup, it’s a big opportunity for pro scouts to sit on most likely eight at-bats from one of the top catching prospects in the country. It will be a can’t-miss game for scouts as they look to lock in on Rortvedt during the shorter spring season in Wisconsin.    

May 14

Sun Prairie Tournament

Sun Prairie is again hosting a four team tournament with Appleton West, Bay Port, and Indian Trail. A tournament our staff covered last year, this is a great chance to matchup some of the top teams from both north and south parts of the state.

Arrowhead vs. Milwaukee Lutheran

After finishing last season under .500 Milwaukee Lutheran ran off seven straight wins to take home the Division II state title. The Red Knights only lost three seniors and brings back their top four hitters and pitchers from last year’s state title team. Wisconsin-Milwaukee recruit Nick Winter leads the team at the plate and on the mound, along with TD Walker and Ryan Selner who are all Division I commits. If Milwaukee Lutheran can continue its run from last year, this matchup could have big implications on the Little Ten Conference.

May 17

May 17th could be a big day for deciding many conference championships across the state.

Appleton North vs. Kimberly

Both teams look to be at the top of the Fox Valley Association as the regular season comes to an end. Last season Kimberly took both matchups by a score of 3-2 and 3-0 in the regular season. They met again in the Sectional Semifinal with Kimberly winning 5-4 in nine innings.

Sun Prairie vs. Janesville Craig

Last season the two teams split the season series, with Craig winning the Big Eight Conference title en route to the Division I state championship. Craig boasts some of the top uncommitted prospects in the state with 2017 middle infielders Jack Blomgren and Noah Berghammer along with 2018 catcher Jacob Campbell. Sun Prairie’s top junior Ben Hauser is also still uncommitted along with one of the top 2017 prospects in Missouri transferring to Sun Prairie, SS Walker Jenkins, a toolsy defender with switch hitting abilities. This could be an valuable game for college recruiters as well.

May 21

Milwaukee Lutheran vs. Lake County Lutheran

This game will be a high profile matchup featuring D2 state champion Milwaukee Lutheran and D3 state champion Lake County Lutheran. Last season Lake County Lutheran capped a 60-2 run over the course of the last two seasons and look to compete again for a Division III State Title.

May 24

Indian Trail vs. Tremper

This will be the final of three matchups for the two Kenosha schools and could be the deciding game for the Southeast Conference championship. Both programs project to be at the top of the conference and will also be a good matchup of high level prospects. Along with Lux and Justin Lavey, five of the top 40 seniors and eight of the top 80 juniors will be in this game. There is a good chance scouts will get a final look at Lux against a good arm in either Keith Kutzler or Jacob DeLabio.

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