Metro East Kickoff Classic Preview



By Illinois Scouting Staff

The inaugural Metro East Kickoff Classic sponsored by Prep Baseball Report is coming to the St. Louis Metro East area in mid-March. The three-day event will take place from March 16 - March 18th (Thursday-Saturday), featuring 19 teams from around the states of Illinois and Missouri. Games will be played at three locations in the Metro East area; Edwardsville HS, O’Fallon HS and GCS Ballpark in Sauget, IL.

The Prep Baseball Report will provide complete coverage of the Kickoff Classic, covering each location with full game reports including insider scouting notes and statistical highlights. The Prep Baseball Report website will host everything you need to know, including schedule, scores game recaps, scout blogs and more.

TEAMS (Head Coach)

  • Alton - (Todd Haug)
  • Belleville East - (Ryan Wiggs)
  • Benton - (Brett Blondi)
  • Carbondale - (Chad Perschbacher)
  • Chatham-Glenwood - (Pat Moomey)
  • Civic Memorial - (Nick Smith)
  • Columbia - (Neil O’Donnel)
  • Edwardsville - (Tim Funkhouser)
  • Harrisburg - (Jay Thompson)
  • Joliet Catholic - (Jared Voss)
  • Moline - (Craig Schimmel)
  • Mt. Vernon - (Tim Holloway)
  • Mt. Zion - (Matt Smith)
  • Niles Notre Dame - (Nelson Gord)
  • Normal West - (Chris Hawkins)
  • Oak Forest - (Ron Czarnecki)
  • O’Fallon - (Jason Portz)
  • Plainfield South - (Phil Bodine)
  • Salem - (Brian Lipe)
  • St. Louis University (MO) - (Steve Nicollerate)
  • St. Louis Marquette (MO) - (John Meyer)

PLAYERS TO WATCH

  • Reid Detmers, LHP, Chatham-Glenwood, 2017 - Louisville commit, one of the most polished and advanced pitchers in Illinois. Worked at an easy 88-90 mph with his fastball at the Super 60 with a three pitch feel for strikes.
  • Jacob Maton, RHP, Chatham-Glenwood, 2018 - Coastal Carolina commit, is one of the top junior arms in Illinois. Maton, who sits in the upper 80’s, was a standout at last summer’s Future Games. Maton and Detmers look to be the top 1-2 punch on the mound in the state and give the Titans a legitimate chance to win Class 3A this season.
  • Hayden Juenger, RHP/SS, O’Fallon, 2018 - One of the top uncommitted arms in the 2018 class. This is his first season in a Panther uniform after transferring from Collinsville. Juenger recently attended our Preseason All-State and sat an easy 87-88 mph, touched 89 with feel for the zone. He should also be one of the top position players for O’Fallon this spring.
  • Logan Boente, RHP, O’Fallon, 2018 - Was the No. 2/3 starter for O’Fallon last season as a sophomore. Went 7-1 with a 2.31 ERA last season. Will once again be a conference starter for the Panthers.
  • Josh Gibson, INF, O’Fallon, 2019 - Recent Missouri State commit, started every game at second base as a freshman last season for the Panthers. He hit .324 with 14 runs batted in last season. May be asked to play some on the left-side of the infield this season.
  • Dylan Burris, OF, Edwardsville, 2017 - Wabash Valley commit. Left/left outfielder with bat speed at the plate and should hit somewhere at the top of the order for the Tigers. Hit .448 as a junior last season. Sidenote; Burris recently broke the Edwardsville indoor track record with a 4.5 40.
  • Kade Burns, INF, Edwardsville, 2017 - Central Missouri commit. Athletic, quick-twitch left-handed hitter. Smooth infielder and good instincts on the bases.
  • Andrew Frank, RHP, Edwardsville, 2017 - Uncommitted. 6-foot-5, projectable righty struck out 35 in 33 innings last season. Fastball sits in the mid-to-upper 80’s.
  • Austin Marozas, RHP, Plainfield South, 2017 - Kentucky commit, currently ranked No. 1 in the Illinois Class of 2017. At 6-foot-7, 240-pounds Marozas works from a ¾ arm angle with a slight crossfiire delivery. He showed increased velocity this winter at the Super 60 running his fastball up to 93 mph with heavy sinking life.
  • Konnor Ash, RHP, Plainfield South, 2017 - Missouri commit. Ash and Marozas rival the 1-2 punch of Chatham-Glenwood’s Maton and Detmers. Ash has a live arm, easily sits in the upper 80’s and features and above-average three-pitch mix.
  • Ben Cruikshank, LHP, Belleville East, 2018 - Missouri State commit. Long, projectable left-handed pitcher, works in the upper 80s with his fastball.
  • Aiden Tyrell, LHP, Joliet Catholic, 2018 - Notre Dame commit. Quick armed lefty up to 87 mph with his fastball. Can throw his breaking ball for a strikes.
  • Jared Cushing, SS/3B, Joliet Catholic, 2019 - Saw time on varsity as a freshman for the Hilltoppers. Gap to gap approach at the plate with a loose swing, creating backspin. Will play on the left side of the diamond for JCA this season.
  • Jake Jones, RHP, Oak Forest, 2017 - Murray State commit. 6-foot-4, 180-pound, long levered right-handed pitcher sits in the mid 80’s with his fastball and mixes in a sharp 12/6 curveball.
  • Mike Edwards, RHP, Oak Forest, 2017 - Wisconsin-Milwaukee commit. Big-bodied right-hander sits 85-88 mph with a three-pitch mix.
  • Jonah Smith, LHP, Mt. Zion, 2018 - Illinois State commit. Currently ranked No. 67 in Illinois, has a projectable frame and sits in the low 80’s with his fastball.
  • Dalton Lambert, RHP, Harrisburg, 2018 - The 6-foot-3, 190-pound righty recently attended one of our winter events. Gets tilt on his 84-85 mph fastball and showed an above-average three-pitch mix.
  • Walker Brockhouse, RHP, Mt. Vernon, 2017 - 6-foot-4, 175-pound, lanky, athletic right-handed pitcher was the top overall prospect at this winter’s Unsigned Senior Showcase. Quick arm, fastball sat 84-87 mph and flashed a sharp 12/6 curveball.
  • Caleb Jacobs, 3B, Normal West, 2017 - Western Illinois commit, has a strong 6-foot-2, 210-pound, frame and was a 2016 first team All-Conference selection.
  • Peyton Dillingham CF, Normal West, 2017 - Heartland CC commit, was a first team All-Conference in 2016 and is a three-year starter Normal West.
  • Max Rimac, LHP, Niles Notre Dame, 2017 -  Cicso JC commit. Rimac leads the pitching staff for a team that has given up the least amount of runs in the ESCC the past two years. The LHP runs his fastball into the mid 80s.
  • Brody Harding, SS, Moline, 2019 - Illinois commit, left-handed hitting shortstop, handles the bat extremely well.
  • Gary Volz, RHP, Alton, 2018 - Hard throwing right-hander went 8-1 as a sophomore last season.
  • Robby Taul, RHP, Alton, 2019 - Is an advanced underclass arm with a high upside.  

FULL GAME SCHEDULE

PBR GAMES OF THE DAY

Thursday: O’Fallon vs. Chatham-Glenwood (7:00 PM, GCS Park)

Friday: Edwardsville vs. Plainfield South (7:00 PM, Tom Pile Field)

Saturday: Joliet Catholic vs. Edwardsville (11:00 AM, Tom Pile Field)

LOCATIONS

  • GCS Park (Grizzlie Stadium), 2301 Grizzlie Bear Blvd., Sauget, IL 62206
  • Blazier Field (O’Fallon HS), 718 Parkview Drive, O'Fallon, IL 62269
  • Tom Pile Field (Edwardsville HS), 6161 Center Grove Rd, Edwardsville, IL 62025

RELATED CONTENT