Fri July 13, 2012
The Premier Prospect Upperclass Showcase at Evangel University yeilded some impressive prospects from the Midwest.
Here is a look at some of the top performers of the event:
Brayton Ballenger, SS, Springfield Catholic, Class of 2014:
Ballenger is an athletic 5-foot-10, 165-pound SS who impressed with his speed and athleticism. Ballenger posted the top 60 time of the event, running a 6.72. In the field, Ballenger has a good approach to the ball, with soft hands, a quick transfer, and played through the ball with accurate throws across the diamond. He also showed impressive range to both the forehand and backhand sides. At the plate, Ballenger has a slightly open stance and a short stride. He has quick hands that came down to the ball producing a level swing, and showing the ability to pull the ball. Ballenger looks to be one of the top Class of 2014 players in Missouri.
Justus Boever, RHP, Logan-Rogersville HS, Class of 2013:
Boever is a wiry 6-foot-4, 180-pound right handed pitcher who comes from a high ¾ arm slot with a long, loose arm and good rhythm on the mound. Boever’s fastball sat an easy 84-86 mph with late cut and was consistently thrown for a strike. He also showcased a sharp, late breaking 11-to-5 breaking ball (67-73) with fastball arm speed and a 68-71 mph change up down in the zone with arm side movement. Boever has plenty of room to fill out his frame, and as he continues to mature physically should see a spike in velocity.
Blake Brown, RHP/3B, Joplin HS, Class of 2013:
A two-way player, the 6-foot-1, 180-pound Brown proved to be effective on the mound, in the field, and at the plate. On the mound, Brown is a sidearm thrower who consistently kept the ball down in the zone and on the outside half of the plate. His fastball topped at 74 mph and showed some sink. He also threw a 65-67 mph breaking ball and a 63-65 mph change up that had some arm side run. At times, Brown had trouble finding a consistent release point, when he did he showed to be an effective pitcher, especially during the live batting practice session. In the field, Brown showed to be a confident fielder with a quick transfer. His throws came from the same side arm slot as his pitching arm slot, with a top throw of 75 mph. Offensively, Brown has a big load and long swing, which made consistent contact using all fields. When he shortened up his swing, he showed some pop in his bat, especially with pitches down in the zone.
Austyn Cochran, OF, Raymore-Peculiar HS, Class of 2014:
The strong bodied 6-foot, 200-pound Cochran impressed with his defensive actions and power potential at the plate. Cochran showed good instincts in the outfield, moves athletically through the baseball, and was accurate with all his throws (77 mph) that had some carry. At the plate, Cochran has an open stance and maintained excellent balance through contact. He has a very quiet approach at the plate, displaying loose hands and a quick bat through the zone that produced line drives with back spin carry. Additionally, Cochran ran a 7.38 60 and had a top exit velo of 88 mph off the bat. Cochran has the potential to be one of the top power hitters in the Class of 2014 as he continues to progress.
Ranger Curtis, 1B, Clever H, Class of 2013:
Curtis showed good mobility around first base with soft hands and fundamental footwork. Curtis comes off the bag well with throws on a line to second base when turning double plays. At the plate, the left handed hitting Curtis has a balanced stance and quick hands the produce barrel whip through the zone. He showed the ability to square up the ball with pull side power.
Evan Gruener, OF, Logan-Rogersville, Class of 2013:
The athletic 6-foot-1, 190-pound Gruener has proven to be one of the top outfielders in the Class of 2013, showing well in all facets of the game. Gruener showed his athletic ability in the field, with natural instincts reading the ball off the bat and taking aggressive, accurate routes to the baseball. He showed an accurate arm (83 mph) with all throws on a line to third base and home. Offensively, Gruener (hitting with an injured wrist) has an easy left-handed approach with a strong lower half. He has a balanced stance at the plate with fast bat speed creating barrel whip through the zone and driving the ball with power and backspin carry to the right side. Gruener had the top exit velo of 92 mph off the bat and ran a 6.92 60. Gruener should continue to see his stock rise as one of the top overall players in the Class of 2013.
Joshua Hampton, C/OF, Sikeston HS, Class of 2013:
At the plate, Hampton has a level swing that showed some glimpses of power. He was able to consistently square up on the ball and drive it gap to gap. In the outfield, the lanky 6-foot-1, 170-pounder showed fundamental movements to the ball with good routes and keeping his momentum toward his targets. His throws were accurate with some carry (78 mph). Behind the plate, Hampton showed quick feet, solid blocking skills and a quick exchange, resulting in a best pop time of 2.16 (75 mph). Hampton had an exit velo of 83 mph off the bat and ran a 7.42 60.
Joey Humphrey, LHP/1B, Kickapoo HS, Class of 2014:
The undersized 5-foot-11, 155-pound Humphrey impressed on the mound and at 1B. On the mound, Humphrey comes from a ¾ arm slot with quick arm speed, a long, free arm, and good rhythm. His fastball sat 78-80 with late run and was consistently thrown for a strike. He also showed a 71-72 mph sweeping breaking ball with fastball arm speed and a 73 mph change up with arm side movement down in the zone. At 1B, Humphrey showed to be a sure handed fielder and came off the bag well in turning double plays. Offensively, Humphrey showed surprising power for a player of his size. He has a balanced stance with a long stride. Humphrey showed to have loose hands with a short, level swing and extension through contact with some pull side power. He had a to exit velo of 82 mph off the bat.
Bo McSpadden, 1B, Chelsea HS (OK), Class of 2014:
McSpadden is a big-bodied 6-foot-4, 215-pound first baseman. Around the base, McSpadden moves well for a player of his size, showing fluid footwork, a good glove and accurate throws to second and third base. Offensively, McSpadden showed the ability to consistently put the ball in spraying the ball to all fields. With more use of his lower half, he might find more consistency and the ability to drive the ball hard.
Joshua Miller, 1B, Joplin HS, Class of 2014:
Miller is an athletically built 6-foot-2, 205-pounds. He moved well around 1B with good hands and a sure glove with accurate throws to second when turning double plays (72 mph). Offensively, Miller has a good approach at the plate and takes a short path to the ball showing the ability to hit the ball to the opposite field. When he was able to barrel up the ball, he showed the potential to hit for some power, as evidenced by his 86 mph ball exit speed of the bat.
Winston Rasmussen, C, Har-Ber HS (AR), Class of 2013:
A veteran of PBR events, Rasmussen continues to impress with his powerful swing at the plate. Rasmussen is very quite in the box, and uses his strong lower half and quick, loose hands to square up on the ball producing impressive barrel whip through the zone. He showed plus pull-side power, driving balls deep in the left center gap. The ball jumps off his bat with backspin carry. Winston has a top exit velo of 88 mph off the bat. Behind the plate, Rasmussen showed the ability to stick the ball during bullpen sessions and had good instincts blocking balls in the dirt. His top pop time was 2.10.
Adam St. Peter, 1B/RHP, Joplin HS, Class of 2013:
A physically imposing 6-foot-4, 225-pounds, St. Peter showed to be a consistent and effective player on the mound and at the plate. One the mound, St. Peter comes from an over the top arm slot with quick arm speed and showed the ability to command three pitches for strikes. His fastball sat 80-81 down in the zone with some cut action, breaking ball had a sharp, late breaking 12-to-6 shape, and a 67-70 mph change up. At first base, St. Peter has confident hands and works well around the bag with good body control in turning double plays. Offensively, St. Peter has a short stride and smooth load at the plate. He showed the ability to drive the ball hard, showing good power to the right center field power alley and effectively using all fields.
Colton Vaught, OF, Crane HS, Class of 2014:
Vaught is a 5-foot-6, 130-pound outfielder. In the field, Vaught took good routes to the ball and demonstrated good body control in his approach. At the plate, Vaught showed the ability to make consistent contact, spraying the ball to all fields. Vaught ran a 7.28 60.
Bryce Wilson, RHP, Clever HS, Class of 2013:
The lanky 6-foot-3, 175-pound Wilson is a RHPwho throws three pitches. His heavy fastball sat 74-76 with some arm side run and was consistently thrown for a strike. He also showed near fastball arm speed with his 66-67 mph breaking ball that gradual movement and a 66 mph change up. Wilson looks to be a raw talent who with some mechanical tweaks and physical maturity should see a spike in velocity and more consistency with all his pitches.
Chance Wolfe, C/RHP, Clever HS, Class of 2013:
Wolfe is an athletic 6-foot-1, 165-pound two way player who excelled in all facets of his game. Behind the plate, Wolfe has a sturdy base and keeps the ball centered on his body and showed the ability to stick pitches in all parts of the zone. He has quick feet on this throws to second base, with a top pop time of 2.16. At the plate, Wolfe has a smooth load and good balance, showing some rhythm. He showed a level swing that produced gap to gap line drives. Wolfe had a top exit velo of 83 mph. On the mound, Wolfe has free and easy arm action and threw all pitches for a strike. His fastball topped at 83 mph and showed some arm side run, while being kept down in the zone. Wolfe also threw a 67-68 breaking ball with sharp 11-to-7 movement and a 69-71 change up with some late sink and fade.
Wade Wood, 3B, Tipton HS, Class of 2013:
Wood is a solidly built 5-foot-11, 198-pound player who showed to be a powerful hitter. Starting with a slightly open stance, Wood has good rhythm at the plate. Using a strong lower hand and strong hands, Wood produced barrel whip through the zone driving the ball with backspin carry gap to gap. Wood had a top exit velo of 88 mph off the bat. In the field, Wood showed good footwork and concise lateral movement in fielding the ball out in front with a quick, clean transfer and accurate 74-78 mph throws across the diamond. Wood ran a 7.09 60.