Underclass Trials: Catcher Analysis


By Wisconsin Staff

The Wisconsin Underclass Trials is one of the most important events on our summer circuit, as it precludes a number of invite-only events, and the information gathered at this showcase is often helpful when determining where invitations need to be forwarded. The event was held on June 19 and rain moved us from The Rock Sports Complex to Hitters Baseball Academy in Caledonia, Wis.

There were over 100 prospects from the 2021, 2022, and 2023 graduating classes, representing all corners of Wisconsin. Starting today, we’ll be breaking down each position with an analysis story, beginning with the catchers.

TOP PROSPECTS

1. Anthony Tomczak, Muskego, 2021
Positional Profile: C
Body: 5-foot-11, 185-pounds. Strong build.
Hit: RHH. Open setup, smooth load, leg lift stride. Fast bat speed, long and uphill path to the baseball, gap-to-gap approach at the plate.
Power: 88 mph exit velocity from the tee with bat strength.
Arm: RH. C - 71 mph. Loose arm action from a high 3/4 arm slot.
Defense: 2.13-2.31 pop times. Active feet, soft hands, clean blocking abilities.
Run: 7.55 runner in the 60.

2. Noah Berndt, Winneconne, 2021
Positional Profile: C
Body: 6-foot-2, 215-pounds. Large, strong, imposing frame.
Hit: RHH. Open setup, minimal load, strides to bring himself even. Fast bat speed, level path to the baseball, gap-to-gap approach at the plate, fluid rhythm.
Power: 91 mph exit velocity from the tee. Consistent hard contact, natural lift and drive.
Arm: RH. C - 80 mph. Short arm action from a 3/4 arm slot.
Defense: 2.13-2.20 pop times. Feet work, controlled to exchange, agile for size.
Run: 7.49 runner in the 60. 

3. Nolan Rowe, Rice Lake, 2021
Positional Profile: C
Body: 6-foot-1, 180-pounds. Athletic build, strong lower half.
Hit: RHH. Open setup, minimal load, big leg kick stride. Long and level path to the baseball, flashed a gap-to-gap approach at the plate.
Power: 83 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 76 mph. Short arm action from an over the top slot. Above-average arm strength with some accuracy.
Defense: 2.01-2.13 pop times. Strong out of the crouch, fluid footwork, quick exchanges, overall athletic field position.
Run: 7.09 runner in the 60. 

4. Levi Kline, Baraboo, 2022
Positional Profile: C
Body: 6-foot-0, 160-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Balanced and athletic setup, hands load back, toe tap stride, maintains balance throughout. Fast bat speed, short and level path to the baseball, gap-to-gap approach at the plate, solid hand/eye skills.
Power: 85 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 65 mph. Short arm action from over-the-top slot.
Defense: 2.37-2.59 pop times. Soft hands, clean exchanges, plays through the baseball, an athletic receiver.
Run: 7.04 runner in the 60. 

5. Kellan Short, Catholic Memorial, 2021
Positional Profile: RHP/C
Body: 5-foot-8, 160-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Balanced, slightly open stance, hands fall back into load, leg kick stride, fluid rhythm.  Level bat path, gap-to-gap hitter.
Power: 81 mph exit velocity from the tee. Above-average bat strength, feel for barrel.
Arm: RH. C - 74 mph. Short, loose arm action from an over the top slot. Throws showed accuracy, some carry.
Defense: 2.09-2.13 pop times. Feet are active and gain ground on throws, clean exchanges.
Run: 7.64 runner in the 60. 

Best of the Rest (Listed Alphabetically) 

Zachary Alburg, Menomonee Falls, 2021
Positional Profile: C
Body: 5-foot-9, 165-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Balanced, crouched setup, hands load back, leg kick stride. Long and level path to the baseball, pull approach at the plate.
Power: 84 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 68 mph. Short arm action from a 3/4 arm slot, on target.
Defense: 2.22-2.40 pop times. Clean exchanges.
Run: 7.36 runner in the 60.

Aidan Andersen, Waukesha West, 2021
Positional Profile: C
Body: 6-foot-1, 175-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Wide and balanced setup, hands load back, short stride with a toe tap. Short and level path to the baseball.
Power: 83 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 67 mph. Short arm action from a low 3/4 slot. Throws showed accuracy.
Defense: 2.50-2.69 pop times. Active feet, clean exchanges.
Run: 7.91 runner in the 60. 

Ethan Goll, Marquette University, 2022
Positional Profile: C
Body: 5-foot-9, 140-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Open and tall setup, hands start high, minimal load, leg lift stride to bring himself even. Loose hands, level path to the baseball, flashed opposite field approach at the plate.
Power: 80 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 70 mph. Short, over the top arm action.
Defense: 2.28-2.35 pop times. Soft hands, fluid footwork, clean exchanges.
Run: 7.7 runner in the 60.

Luke Hessenauer, Milton, 2021
Positional Profile: C
Body: 6-foot-2, 220-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Tall and open setup, lowers hands when loading, leg lift stride to bring himself even. Long and uphill path to the baseball, pull approach at the plate.
Power: 91 mph exit velocity from the tee. Present bat strength, looking to lift.
Arm: RH. C - 72 mph. Long arm action from a 3/4 arm slot.
Defense: 2.20-2.34 pop times. Clean exchanges, can get tall.
Run: 8.12 runner in the 60.

Tyler Hofmann, Germantown, 2022
Positional Profile: C/INF
Body: 5-foot-6, 150-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Wide and balanced setup, minimal load, short stride. Short and level path to the baseball, line drive approach at the plate.
Power: 78 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 70 mph. Short arm action from a high 3/4 arm slot. Throws flashed carry.
Defense: 2.20-2.37 pop times. Soft hands, fluid footwork, clean exchanges, plays through the baseball.
Run: 8.13 runner in the 60. 

Boone Kirst, Ashwaubenon, 2023
Positional Profile: INF/C
Body: 6-foot-2, 175-pounds. Lean, wiry frame.
Hit: RHH.  Wide base, balanced setup. Short stride, minimal load, short and level path to the ball. Line-drive approach.
Power: 79 mph exit velocity from the tee. Barrel feel with projection as he adds muscle, matures.
Arm: RH. C - 67 mph. Long arm action from the chute, throws consistently on line.
Defense: 2.40-2.65 pop times. Balanced, controlled footwork from the crouch, works through the baseball.
Run: 7.65 runner in the 60.

Andrew Kisting, New Berlin Eisenhower, 2021
Positional Profile: C
Body: 5-foot-11, 155-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Slightly open setup, tilts barrel forward when loading, short stride. Long, uphill path to the baseball, line drive approach at the plate with some gap-to-gap contact.
Power: 78 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 71 mph. Short arm action from a 3/4 slot.
Defense: 2.32-2.53 pop times. Active feet, gains ground on throws, clean exchanges and blocking ability.
Run: 7.76 runner in the 60. 

Evan Long, Tomah, 2021
Positional Profile: RHP/C
Body: 6-foot-0, 180-pounds. Athletic frame, strength in lower half.
Hit: RHH. Open setup, hands load back, leg lift stride to bring himself even. Level and long path to the baseball, simple and fluid rhythm throughout swing.
Power: 74 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 76 mph. Short arm action from a high 3/4 slot.
Defense: 2.28-2.63 pop times. Gains ground on throws, reliable hands.
Run: 7.89 runner in the 60.

Ian Merry, Sheboygan North, 2022
Positional Profile: C
Body: 5-foot-10, 170-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Balanced setup, minimal load, leg lift stride. Level and long path to the baseball, hits in some rhythm.
Power: 81 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 67 mph. Long arm action, high 3/4 slot.
Defense: 2.25-2.47 pop times. Steady hands, clean exchanges, active feet.
Run: 7.89 runner in the 60. 

Aidan Ripp, Sun Prairie, 2022
Positional Profile: C
Body: 6-foot-1, 190-pounds. Lanky, projectable frame.
Hit: RHH. Balanced and wide setup, minimal load, short stride.  Long path to the baseball, fluid rhythm throughout swing. Uphill plane, two-handed through finish.
Power: 87 mph exit velocity from the tee. Looking to lift, power projection.
Arm: RH. C - 66 mph. Short arm action, high 3/4 arm slot.
Defense: 2.34-2.41 pop times. Two-handed receiving, direct footwork to target.
Run: 7.8 runner in the 60.

Jayden Talavera, South Milwaukee, 2022
Positional Profile: C
Body: 5-foot-11, 165-pounds.
Hit: RHH. Slightly open setup with a short, toe tap stride. Long and uphill path to the baseball, flashed a pull approach at the plate, fluid rhythm throughout swing.
Power: 83 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 69 mph. Loose arm action, high 3/4 slot.
Defense: 2.43-2.50 pop times. Taller setup, clean exchanges.
Run: 8.32 runner in the 60. 

Caden Van Duyse, Ashwaubenon, 2023
Positional Profile: C/OF
Body: 5-foot-11, 145-pounds
Hit: LHH. Tall and open setup, hands drop into load, short stride to even. Level and long path to the baseball, pull approach at the plate.
Power: 69 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. C - 62 mph. Long arm action from a high 3/4 slot.
Defense: 2.47-2.66 pop times. Quiet, direct footwork.
Run: 7.55 runner in the 60.

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