Class of 2024 Showcase: Pitcher Analysis


By: Illinois Scouting Staff

On Sunday, October 9, PBR Illinois hosted the Class of 2024 Showcase at The MAX in McCook, Illinois. The event featured over 40 players from the 2024 class and gave our staff an in-depth look at a number of intriguing prospects within the state.

We are finishing up our post-event rollout today with the event's pitchers, found below. 

Braden Vanderheydt (Washington) and Jack Wilson (New Trier) are two other arms worth mentioning that fell just outside of the Top-five list. Vanderheydt has a long, athletic 6-foot-4, 174-pound frame with all kinds of room for continued physical development. He is still polishing his overall stuff but he has a loose quick arm, low-80’s fastball and one of the higher ceilings of the event. Wilson, who has been up to 83 mph in the past, sat 80-81 with a polished four-pitch mix, consistently landing both his breaking balls for strikes. 

TOP PITCHERS

1. Nick Bestrick, Sandburg (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP/OF
Body: 5-10, 175-pounds. Compact frame, strong lower half.
Delivery: Controlled tempo throughout, coils into balance point, drop/drive lower-half, remains in-line with the plate.
Arm Action: RH. Short arm out of the glove into an over-the-top slot.
FB: T86.8, 86-87 mph. Life through the zone. T2287, 2188 average rpm.
CB: 72-73 mph. Downer 11/5 shape. T1902, 1884 average rpm.
SL: 74-75 mph. Short 10/4 shape. T2341, 2244 average rpm.

2. Chris Danko, York (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: OF/RHP
Body: 6-1, 165-pounds. Lean, well-proportioned frame, room for added strength.
Delivery: Medium leg-lift, maintains slight knee-bend while striding down the mound, stride works in-line to the plate.
Arm Action: LH. Long/loose arm swing into a 3/4 slot.
FB: T83.5, 82-83 mph. Life through the zone with running action to the arm-side. T1928, 1822 average rpm.
CB: 64-65 mph. Downer 11/5 shape. T1637, 1615 average rpm.
SL: 67-67 mph. Tight 10/4 shape, feel for the zone. T1715, 1653 average rpm.
KN: 63-66 mph. Kills spin, downward action at times.

3. Nicholas Rayyan, Stevenson (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP/1B
Body: 6-1, 218-pounds. Strong lower half.
Delivery: Methodical windup, controlled leg-lift into balance point, drop/drive lower-half, strides slightly closed.
Arm Action: RH. Loose arm action. Medium arm circle into 3/4 slot.
FB: T84.6, 82-84 mph. Life through the zone with slight run. T1958, 1929 average rpm.
CB: 61-63 mph. Gradual 11/5 break, thrown for strikes with arm-speed.  T1988, 1878 average rpm.
CH: 74-75 mph. Feel for the pitch. Fade and depth for strikes. Thrown at arm speed. T1786, 1705 average rpm.

4. Joshua Caccia, St. Charles North (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP/OF
Body: 5-11, 165-pounds. Wiry, proportional frame, room to add strength.
Delivery: Stretch only, closed setup, uptempo pace throughout delivery, coils into balance point before moving with a quick/aggressive stride down the mound, stride works in-line with a closed landing foot.
Arm Action: RH. Long plunge arm action into lower 3/4 slot.
FB: T83.9, 82-84 mph. Life and run through the zone. T2371, 2309 average rpm.
CB: 72-73 mph. Sharp 11/5 action. Thrown at arm speed. T1951, 1911 average rpm.
SL: 72-73 mph. Sharp. Thrown at arm speed. T2207, 2119 average rpm.
CH: 78-79 mph. Developing feel. Flashed arm side run. T2000, 1939 average rpm.

5. Joe Stellano, Reed Custer (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: 2B/RHP
Body: 5-10, 160-pounds. Lean, well-proportioned frame, room for growth.
Delivery: High, athletic leg-lift, fluid tempo, maintains slight bend in the back knee throughout stride, stride works in-line.
Arm Action: RH. Long/loose arm swing into a 3/4 slot.
FB: T81.9, 80-81 mph. Heavy running action to the arm-side. T2059, 2019 average rpm.
SL: 71-73 mph. Sharp 10/4 action. T2173, 2108 average rpm.
CH: 75-77 mph. Flashed late fade to the arm-side. T1390, 1327 average rpm.

5. Clay Gadbois, Kankakee (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP/SS
Body: 6-3, 170-pounds. Lean, high-waisted, projectable frame.
Delivery: Athletic, high leg-kick, tall/fall lower-half, long stride that remains in-line with the plate.
Arm Action: RH. Long arm out of the glove into a high 3/4 slot.
FB: T83.5, 82-83 mph. Life through the zone creates tilt at times, above-average spin. T2455, 2329 average rpm.
CB: 67-69 mph. Downer 11/5 shape. T2144, 2122 average rpm.
CH: 75-76 mph. Fade to the arm-side. T1946, 1806 average rpm.

BEST OF THE REST (LISTED ALPHABETICALLY)

Cole Benson, Oak Park-River Forest (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP/OF
Body: 6-4, 175-pounds. Thin frame, long levers, room for added muscle.
Delivery: High leg-kick into a tall/fall lower-half, stride works in-line.
Arm Action: RH. Long/loose arm circle into an over-the-top slot.
FB: T78.5, 76-77 mph. Some tilt through the zone. T1920, 1828 average rpm.
CB: 63-64 mph. Gradual 11/5 shape, downer action. T1908, 1873 average rpm.
SL: 68-69 mph. Short, 10/4 shape. T2083, 2004 average rpm.
CH: 67-70 mph. Fades to the arm-side. T1403, 1364 average rpm.

Leif Blair, Normal West (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP/3B
Body: 5-11, 190-pounds. Sturdy strong frame, defined lower half, broad shoulders.
Delivery: Controlled leg-lift into balance point, tall/fall lower-half, stride remains in-line with the plate.
Arm Action: RH. Long out of the glove into a high 3/4 slot.
FB: T73.8, 69-73 mph. Ride through the zone with slight arm-side run. T1859, 1763 average rpm.
CB: 57-61 mph. Gradual 11/5 shape, feel for the zone. T1757, 1677 average rpm.
CH: 64-66 mph. Fade to the arm-side, some feel for the zone. T1373, 1252 average rpm.
CUT: 63-66 mph. Short 10/4 shape. 

Cody DelFavero, Morris (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: OF/LHP
Body: 5-10, 175-pounds. Well-proportioned frame, strength in the lower half.
Delivery: Slightly up-tempo, coils into leg-lift, tall/fall lower-half, stride remains in-line.
Arm Action: LH. Medium arm circle into a 3/4 slot.
FB: T79.9, 78-79 mph. Mostly straight. T2187, 2103 average rpm.
CB: 67-68 mph. Tight 2/8 shape. T1811, 1750 average rpm.
CH: 68-69 mph. Fades to the arm-side, feel down and away. T1291, 1264 average rpm.

Colin Geier, Fenwick (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: OF/LHP
Body: 6-0, 165-pounds. Athletic frame, room to add.
Delivery: Stretch only, tall and fall delivery, stays closed down the mound.
Arm Action: LH. High 3/4 slot. In-line arm path.
FB: T76.9, 74-76 mph. Slight run to the arm-side.  T1960, 1858 average rpm.
CB: 66-67 mph. Spinner. Slight 1/7 break. Flashed downer action. T1953, 1903 average rpm.
SL: 66-67 mph. Drops arm slot. Tight horizontal break. Thrown at arm speed. T1887, 1843 average rpm.
CH: 70-72 mph. Slight run. Slows arm slightly to release.  T1430, 1324 average rpm.

Lance Kiesewetter, Henry-Senachwine (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: 1B/RHP
Body: 6-4, 230-pounds. Sturdy frame, long limbs, strength throughout.
Delivery: Medium leg-lift into balance point, tall/fall lower-half, stride remains in-line with the plate.
Arm Action: RH. Long arm swing into a high 3/4 to over-the-top slot.
FB: T83.5, 82-83 mph. Tilt through the zone. T2107, 2021 average rpm.
CB: 70-73 mph. Tight 11/5 shape. T2080, 2015 average rpm.
CH: 74-75 mph. Mostly straight through the zone. T1669, 1495 average rpm.
SPLT: 70-71 mph. Arm-side action.

Jackson Sheckler, Galesburg (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: OF/RHP
Body: 5-9, 140-pounds. Athletic, wiry frame, room for growth.
Delivery: Stretch only, starts front foot closer to third, maintains bend in the back knee throughout stride, stride works in-line.
Arm Action: RH. Short out of the glove into a high 3/4 slot.
FB: T72.6, 70-72 mph. Slight running action to the arm-side. T1687, 1593 average rpm.
CB: 59-60 mph. Gradual 11/5 shape. T1980, 1820 average rpm.
CH: 65-66 mph. Heavy fade to the arm-side at times, feel down in the zone. T1356, 1285 average rpm.

Haiden Stocks, Decatur Lutheran (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: LHP/1B
Body: 5-11, 170-pounds. Athletic frame, high-waisted, room for growth.
Delivery: Methodical leg lift into aggressive stride, tall and fall delivery, creates extension out front.
Arm Action: LH. Quick arm into 3/4 slot.
FB: T76.5, 75-76 mph. Mostly straight, some ride through the zone. T1906, 1829 average rpm.
CB: 62-64 mph. Developing feel to spin. Flashed 1/7 action. T2010, 1947 average rpm.
CH: 69-71 mph. Thrown low in the zone. Some depth. Developing feel. T1594, 1538 average rpm.

Eli Travis, Oak Park-River Forest (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP
Body: 5-8, 165-pounds. Compact frame with strength.
Delivery: Stretch only, front foot starts open, maintains bend in the back-knee throughout stride, stride works in-line with the plate, athletic finish.
Arm Action: RH. Long out of the glove into a high 3/4 slot.
FB: T82.3, 80-82 mph. Mostly straight, some life through the zone. T1973, 1875 average rpm.
CB: 63-65 mph. 11/5 shape with depth, above-average spin. T2554, 2453 average rpm.

Braden Vanderheydt, Washington (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: OF/RHP
Body: 6-4, 178-pounds. Long limbed, lean build, room for added strength.
Delivery: Clean operation, high leg-lift into a slightly coiled balance point, maintains bend in the back knee throughout stride, stride works in-line.
Arm Action: RH. Long/clean arm swing into a high 3/4 slot.
FB: T82.5, 80-82 mph. Horizontal running action through the zone. T1968, 1782 average rpm.
CB: 64-68 mph. Flashed sharp 11/5 action, tight shape. T2053, 1952 average rpm.
CH: 66-70 mph. Similar action to the fastball, fades to the bottom of the zone. T1773, 1679 average rpm.
KN: 62-65 mph. Kills spin, knuckling action.

Jack Wilson, New Trier (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP
Body: 5-11, 183-pounds. Well-proportioned, strong lower half.
Delivery: Athletic, strong lead hip, drops into back knee before striding in-line down the mound.
Arm Action: RH. Clean arm circle into a high 3/4 slot.
FB: T81.9, 80-81 mph. Mostly straight, some life through the zone. T2278, 2104 average rpm.
CB: 69-70 mph. Sharp 11/5 shape, feel for the zone. T2295, 2246 average rpm.
SL: 69-71 mph. Backed up on him at times, flashed sharp 10/4 shape. T2266, 2155 average rpm.
CH: 76-77 mph. Thrown with intent, fades to the arm-side. T1597, 1539 average rpm.

Harry Young, Marist (IL), 2024
Positional Profile: RHP/OF
Body: 6-1, 165-pounds. Wiry frame, long limbs, room for growth.
Delivery: High leg-kick into balance point, tall/fall lower-half, stride remains in-line with the plate.
Arm Action: RH. Short arm circle into a high 3/4 slot.
FB: T76.9, 76-77 mph. Plays with some ride through the zone. T2293, 2183 average rpm.
SL: 66-67 mph. Tight 10/4 shape. T2120, 2086 average rpm.
CH: 71-72 mph. Mostly straight, slight fade to the arm-side at times. T1846, 1739 average rpm.

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