Peoria Preseason I.D.: Top Overall Prospects

By Drew Locascio
Illinois Scouting Director

On Wednesday, February 26th, the PBR Illinois staff made its last stop on the high school winter showcase circuit for the third annual Peoria Preseason I.D. Approximately 70 prospects from the area and all high school classes made their way to the Louisville Slugger Dome in Peoria.

Shortly after the event’s conclusion we posted an early analysis of the event with our Quick Hits and Statistical Analysis pieces. We jump started our position-by-position breakdown by taking a dive into the catchers.

Today we conclude the analysis of the event with a look at the top overall prospects. At the top of the list is 2022 INF/RHP Nolan McMasters (Glenwood). McMasters did it all at the event, coming in as the No. 1 ranked infielder and No. 3 ranked arm. McMasters has advanced bat speed at the plate, tools to stick on the left-side of the diamond moving forward and a quick arm that 83-85 mph on the mound with feel for three. 

Talented LHP Brayden Closs (Warrensburg-Latham, 2021) comes in as the No. 2 overall prospect from Peoria. Closs has seen a huge jump in velocity in a year’s time and showed a polished three-pitch mix while running his fastball up to 86 mph. 

Read on below for the Top-10 overall prospects from the event.


Nolan McMasters SS / RHP / Glenwood , IL / 2022

Positional Profile: SS. Emerged as a high-follow 2022.
Body: 5-foot-10, 165-pounds. Athletic frame.
Hit: RHH. Balanced setup, quiet load and quick leg-kick timing trigger.  Fast bat, athletic hands, short path, stays through the zone and feel for the barrel. Worked gap-to-gap, fluid rhythm throughout.
Power: 87 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. INF - 88 mph. Short, quick arm, over-the-top slot and plays accurate with carry.
Defense: Athletic actions, quick feet, ranges well to both sides and comfortable on the move. Sure-handed and plays through the baseball.
Run: 7.19 runner in the 60. 

Positional Profile: RHP
Delivery: Repeatable drop and drive delivery, closed toe landing, directional to target. Throws with effort.
Arm Action: RH. Short, compact arm action works quick out of a high 3/4 slot.
FB: T85, 83-85 mph. Plays straight with life through the zone. Strikes.
CB: 68-70 mph. 12/6 shape. Sharp action with late break. Swing-and-miss pitch.
CH: 70-72 mph. Natural sinking action. Feel for pitch.

Brayden Closs LHP / Warrensburg-Latham, IL / 2021

Positional Profile: LHP
Body: 6-foot-2, 200-pounds. Strong, proportional frame.
Delivery: Smooth tall and fall delivery, shoulders stay level, works on line with target and lands square.
Arm Action: LH. Long arm path, high 3/4 slot, loose out front.
FB: T86, 82-85 mph. Plays straight. Pounds lower half of zone.
CB: 72-75 mph. 1/7 shape, thrown with intent and consistently landed for strikes.
CH: 76-78 mph. Maintains fastball arm speed. Straight movement; feel.

Sam Monroe OF / Moline, IL / 2020

Positional Profile: OF; One of the top uncommitted seniors in the state.
Body: 5-foot-9, 175-pounds. Athletic, compact frame.
Hit: LHH. Balanced setup, smooth load, high leg kick trigger, balanced through contact. Present bat speed, swings with intent, uphill path, knack for the barrel. Smooth rhythm throughout.
Power: 96 mph exit velocity from the tee.
Arm: RH. OF - 85 mph. Long and loose arm action, over-the-top slot. Accurate throws with carry.
Defense: Smooth, athletic actions, attacks the ball, feet field in rhythm, plays through the baseball.
Run: 7.11 runner in the 60.

Will Morris RHP / Plainfield South, IL / 2021

Positional Profile: RHP
Body: 6-foot-5, 180-pounds. Athletic build. Projects.
Delivery: Uptempo delivery, high leg kick, high front side, closed toe-landing, works direct to target. Throws with some effort.
Arm Action: RH. Long and loose arm action, high 3/4 slot. Quick arm.
FB: T87, 82-87 mph. Clean out the hand. Hard action with natural arm-side run.
CB: 66-67 mph. 11/5 shape. Thrown with intent.
CH: 75-76 mph. Showed both arm-side run and sink.

Josh Heyder C / 3B / Washington, IL / 2021

Positional Profile: C/3B
Body: 6-foot, 210-pounds. Broad-shouldered strong build with physicality throughout.
Hit: RHH. Balanced wide setup, smooth loading action and minimal stride. Quiet compact swing, strong hands, present bat strength, short path and flashed pull-side power.
Power: 91 mph exit velocity from the tee. Power potential.
Arm: RH. C - 80 mph. INF - 88 mph. Easy arm strength. Short over-the-top arm action and throws played with carry.
Defense: 2.07-2.19 pop times. Showed best behind the plate but has the ability to profile as a corner infielder as well. Clean and directional out of the crouch. Efficient and easy actions, advanced blocks; deadens the baseball in front. Quiet receiver, soft hands.
Run: 7.60 runner in the 60. 

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