Prep Baseball Report

Preseason Power 25 Countdown: No. 1 Arrowhead

By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor – Wisconsin/Illinois

Let’s get ready to kick off the 2015 baseball season. Tomorrow is opening day around the state for spring baseball. Whether or not the weather will cooperate is another story. But to get our spring baseball juices flowing, today we reveal the No. 1 team in our Preseason Power 25 rankings.

If you’ve missed any of the countdown, follow the link below to catch up on all of the Preseason Power 25 teams. Good luck to all this spring and we look forward to seeing you on the diamond.

CLICK HERE for complete Preseason Power 25.

No. 1 Arrowhead

2014 Record: 23-8
WIAA Classification: 1
Wisconsin Little Ten
Head Coach:
Vince Mancuso
2014 Playoff Run:
Sectional Quarterfinals (Summer)


Jack Bredeson, RHP, 2015 (Michigan)
Mike Bauer, C, 2015 (McHenry County JC)
Sam Swan, MIF, 2015 (UW-Milwaukee)
Chris Bernatz, RHP, 2015
Nate Brown, RHP/MIF, 2016 (Florida)
Dominic Clementi, OF, 2016 (Michigan)
Ryan Schmitt, RHP, 2016 (Western Kentucky)
Johnny Duranso, OF, 2016
Derek Crawley, RHP, 2017
Jeff Holtz, C, 2018 (Indiana)


Moving from summer to spring baseball, 2015 will be the first year this Arrowhead team will be playing together at full strength. That being said, team chemistry will be one of the few hurdles this team has to face. Several of their top players will be new this year as they have always opted to play summer travel baseball instead of high school. Weaving these talented prospects into an already formidable squad will be the task of Head Coach Vince Mancuso and his staff in order to make the transition as smooth as possible.


You can basically throw out any record or stats from last year’s club as the 2015 Warhawks will look completely different and play a completely different schedule. But here’s a couple stats for you to chew on. Arrowhead has seven college commits in their program already, six of which are Division 1 recruits, that’s the same number of D1 recruits as the No. 2 (Bay Port) and No. 3 (Appleton North) teams combined.


Arrowhead has one of the top freshman prospects in the Midwest. C Jeff Holtz who is already committed to Indiana University was one of the more highly recruited prospects in the state this winter. Holtz has a 6-foot-3, 180-pound projectable frame, already posts 2.0 pop times, runs a 7.03 60 which is highly advanced speed for a catcher at his age, and his bat may be the best tool in his bag. Expect to see Holtz name near the top of many of our 2018 player rankings when they launch later this spring. Of all the highly touted prospects in the Arrowhead program, Holtz may have one of the highest ceilings of them all.


Arrowhead is absolutely loaded with talent. It’s impossible to look at these guys on paper and not say they have the most talent in the state, and that’s basically what preseason rankings are, on paper. Arrowhead hasn’t played a game yet with this squad as they have moved from summer to spring baseball. We’ve been saying it for years that Arrowhead had the most talented collection of baseball players walking their hallways, the problem was none of them wanted to play high school baseball because of the conflict with summer travel organizations. Well, put all that in the rear view mirror because the Warhawks are now playing spring baseball and they are loaded with Division 1 prospects all over the field. There is not a team in the state that can match the pitching prowess of Arrowhead in 2015. RHP’s Jack Bredeson, Nate Brown, Ryan Schmitt and Chris Bernatz can all pitch in the upper 80’s while we’ve seen Florida Gator commit Brown touch low 90 numbers in multiple outings, and that quartet of arms doesn’t include sophomore Derek Crowley who went 5-0 last year as a freshman for the Warhawks. Moving on from their pitching staff, Arrowhead has possibly the best freshman prospect in the state, Jeff Holtz who is already committed to Indiana. Holtz, a catcher, might have to concede time behind the plate to senior Mike Bauer but Holtz bat is as good as any and should find its way into the lineup somewhere. Michigan commit Dominic Clementi is one of the top outfield prospects in the state and most likely will man CF with his 6.84 speed and cannon of an arm. Arrowhead will also be adding UW-Milwaukee commit MIF Sam Swan back to the roster after suffering a knee injury last year, expect Nate Brown to pair up with him in the middle of the infield when he’s not pitching.

Although maybe a controversial pick seeing as though they have zero track record together, Arrowhead is our preseason favorite to take home the hardware in 2015, regardless if it will be the first season for these guys to play together or not, there is not a team in the state with more talent on the field.

If you are a high school coach and have yet to send in your Preseason Questionnaire please fill one out HERE.

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