Prep Baseball Report

Kenosha Preseason I.D.: Quick Hits

PBR Scouting Staff

The first leg of Wisconsin preseason events is in the books, the Kenosha Preseason I.D. finished with nearly 100 prospects from Wisconsin and Illinois who showed off their winter gains for the PBR scouting staff. Below is a quick compilation of our first impressions from the event. Stay tuned for a complete statistical analysis on Tuesday and further positional breakdowns in the weeks to come.

A Pair of Plus Arms from Westosha Central

  • Austin Glidden (Westosha Central, 2019) stepped back into the spotlight in Kenosha on Saturday. An all-around athlete, the 6-foot-1, 160-pound Glidden wowed with his plus infield arm, topping out at a 91 mph dart from short to first. On the mound, his heavy fastball averaged 85 mph and he paired it with a sharp 11/5 curveball, and a deceptive changeup. He consistently mixed in his three-pitch arsenal for strikes. At the plate, Glidden recorded a 90 mph exit velocity from a tee, and ran a 4.26 from home to first, further accentuating his athleticism.

  • Alex Salerno (Westosha Central, 2019), like his teammate Glidden, is a talented athlete with an uber arm. In Kenosha, Salerno threw a ball out of the crowhop 92 mph from the outfield. He, too, pitches and was regularly throwing 82 mph fastballs with sink. Salerno was also tossing a neat 11/5 curveball and a fading changeup. At the plate, he can be a gap-to-gap hitter with a compact swing. The two aforementioned will shine as defenders in Paddock Lake this spring.

  • In addition to these Westosha Central juniors, they’re joined by Andrew Hrncar (2020) who flashed some promise with his simple swing that should make it easy to connect for regular contact. His athleticism in the outfield gives him another dimension for the Falcons as well.

Illinois Freshman Stand Out

  • Catcher Emmanuel Scott (St. Ignatius, 2021) grabbed our attention right away with his lean athletic frame at 5-foot-11, 150-pounds. Scott posses quick twitch hands at the plate resulting in a short compact stroke. His receiving skills were on par if not better than any of the upperclassmen catchers in attendance and showed a quick release that will continue to produce above average pop times as his arm strength improves.

  • LHP Eric Orloff (Glenbrook North, 2021) capped off the event on a high note. The southpaw was the last arm to throw on the day and got better as his bullpen progressed, finishing his last three fastballs at 77, 78, and 79 mph respectively. Orloff already has polished secondary stuff with a biting 1/7 curveball and deceptive changeup. His clean and easy high ¾ arm action is only going to produce better stuff with age.

2019 Lefties Make Their Mark

  • Joel Grunert (Oak Creek, 2019) was a pleasant surprise for our staff. The 5-foot-11, 195 pound lefty showed a 4-5 mph uptick in velocity since last seeing him in May. He was poised and accurate with his high 70s fastball that topped at 80 mph with a little late run on it. He coupled his fastball with a curve of the 1/7 variety, and a changeup he demonstrated good feel for. The changeup in particular paired well with his fastball due to its similarity in arm action. He could make for an intriguing collegiate prospect soon, with some room to grow.

  • Grunert, however, wasn’t the only lefty to make a name for himself on Saturday. Christopher Barnes (Sussex Hamilton, 2019) utilizes a low 80s fastball that topped at 83 mph and routinely cuts late and hard from his over-the-top release. In his big, projectable 6-foot-2, 190 pound frame, Barnes is one to follow as he matures. His offspeed repertoire requires some finesse, but the outline of an arm that can play at the next level is here.

Dutton Brothers

  • Tremper prospects Reese (2019) and Riley (2021) both showed well on Saturday. Reese is a strong armed junior who was 86 mph across the infield with athletic actions and took his arm strength to the mound where he flashed a hard sharp curveball at 71-75 mph. Riley has all the actions of a middle infield defender and will likely stick there, whether it’s short or second base will be determined by the maturation process of his tools.

Trio Of Bradford Battery Mates

  • Junior Riley Hughes (Bradford, 2019) is the likely Red Devil starting catcher this season and showed a knack for receiving with soft hands and quiet presentation. His arm plays up from the 78 mph reading, showing easy carry and pinpoint accuracy to bases.

  • Two Bradford arms that Hughes will be working with this season who showed well on Saturday were junior RHP Kyle McKinnon and sophomore RHP Nick Cairo. McKinnon has a downhill fastball at 82-84 mph that couples nicely with his sharp 12/6 curveball. Cairo, just a sophomore, is up to 83 mph out of a clean, easy arm action.

2020 Follows

  • OF Jack Heiring (Christian Life, 2020) was one of the more intriguing prospects of the day. A high ceiling sophomore, Heiring stands 6-foot-3, 160-pounds and moves easy in the outfield and down the line. Offensively his right-handed bat and long levers pack present pop while projecting for more. Heiring throws from the left side (87 mph from the outfield) but also is intriguing on the mound working downhill at 80 mph.

  • Tyler Swanson (Burlington Catholic, 2020) is an ultra athletic sophomore with an impressive toolset. At 5-foot-10, 180-pounds he’s already physically advanced from his peers and generates intriguing numbers running a 4.37 down the line, 86 mph across the infield and posting a 94 mph exit velocity from the tee.

  • Another athletic looking sophomore from the Burlington area is Dalton Damon (Burlington, 2020). Damon gets down the line in a hurry and shows above-average arm strength and bat speed. He has excellent feet in the outfield and could project as a centerfield prospect at the next level.

  • A lean and projectable 6-foot-1, 160-pound Jake Gessert (St. Joseph, 2020) is surely a follow prospect on the infield. His 4.25 home to first time and 86 mph exit velocity piques interest, but it’s his projection and athletic actions that caught our eyes.

  • Nathan Rentas (Warren, IL, 2020) is a compact 5-foot-11, 200-pounds who generates serious bat speed from the left side. His power potential there at the next level is a follow.

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