Prep Baseball Report

Inside the Rankings: 2018 Newcomers

By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor – Illinois/Wisconsin

The 2018 rankings were recently expanded to 80, adding more than 20 new additions to the list. Today we take a deeper look at some of those new additions.

Eau Claire Memorial has put a big imprint on the state’s 2018 rankings, SS/RHP Tanner Kohlhepp jumped into the top 10 and RHP Jack Brown rose into the top 20. Zach Gustafson rounds out a trio of Old Abes who have cracked the top 25 in the state. Gustafson, a lanky RHP, is a highly projectable 6-foot-3, 165-pounds who sat 82-84 mph with good feel for his curveball at 71-73. Gustafson showed well at the Future Games and has a quick loose arm that has a big ceiling, projecting him to be an upper 80’s arm in the near future.

Just outside the top 25, left-handed hitting Colten Schild (Fox Valley Lutheran) has turned in a hot summer at the plate. Schild plays the game with pace and aggressiveness, a leadoff type bat who can get around the bases in a hurry and a second base defender at the next level.

In the top 35 a couple of new arms make the cut. RHP’s Taylor Jansen (Sun Prairie) and Mike McBriar (Oshkosh West) are a pair of high follows in the state. Jansen is a lean, long limbed 6-foot-2, 170-pounds with an easy arm that gets up to 86 mph and a hard breaking ball up to 77 mph. McBriar is more of a solid build at 6-foot, 205-pound who can also run a mid-80’s fastball out there. This spring McBriar posted a 0.50 ERA in the FVA as a sophomore en route to a first-team all-conference selection.

OF Grant Emme (Kaukauna) rounds out the top 40 newcomers, Emme possesses a premium run tool and a highly athletic right-handed hitting outfielder who recently committed to Eastern Illinois.

Here’s a quick look at more newcomers to the top 60:

OF/RHP Alex Oakley (Sun Prairie) – 6-foot-3, 195-pound R/R outfielder with upside in his bat.

RHP Jackson Brown (Oconomowoc) – Lanky RHP, 6-foot-2, 170-pounds up to 84 mph.

LHP Luke DePrey (Sun Prairie) – 5-foot-11, 185-pound southpaw touches 81 mph.

RHP Devin Fish (New Berlin Eisenhower) – Strong bodied RHP up to 84 mph.

OF Keagan Calchera (Eau Claire Memorial) – Rangy R/R outfielder, projectable frame.

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