Prospect Identification Showcase 2.18.13: Middle Infield Analysis



By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Director - Illinois

Continuing our coverage of the Prospect Identification Showcase on February 18th we take a look at middle infielders. This group was highlighted by Rylan Bannon a 2014 graduate of Joliet Catholic Academy. The lanky middle infielder showed excellent athleticism and a strong arm. Kevin Clifford (Naperville Central HS, 2015) and Jake Milosch (St. Charles East HS, 2015) also showed solid fielding actions and the ability to play on the move. Here’s how we broke down the middle infield group.

Top Middle Infielders

1. Rylan Bannon, Joliet Catholic Academy, MIF, Class of 2014
Athletic frame with some length, lean build, 5-foot-10, 150-pound infielder. Defensively shows solid actions, soft hands, and excellent body control. Arm works from a high ¾ arm slot, short arm action, shows accuracy, arm shows carry, 79 mph across the diamond. Exchange is quick and clean, tends to throw off back side. Offensively hits from a slightly open stance, smooth load, uses short stride. Bat path is short, gets some extension, hits with rhythm. Bat speed is present, 85 mph exit velocity, works the middle of the field well, consistent contact, shows barrel awareness.

2. Kevin Clifford, Naperville Central HS, MIF, Class of 2015
Strong build, strong lower half, wide shoulders, 5-foot-7, 178-pound middle infielder. Defensively shows athleticism, footwork is quick. Arm action is short and loose, shows carry, 77 mph across the diamond. Offensively shows strength. Hits from balanced setup, slightly longer stride, good balance throughout. Bat speed is present, 88 mph exit velocity from the tee, swing has pop, solid barrel whip through the zone. Also ran a 4.39 home to first.

3. Jake Milosch, St. Charles East HS, MIF, Class of 2015
Athletic build, 5-foot-10, 165-pound middle infielder. Defensively shows soft hands, above average athletic actions. Arm plays well across the diamond, loose arm, lower arm slot, shows accuracy, 75 mph across the infield. At the plate hits from an open stance, good balance throughout. Gets extension, some uphill tendencies, aggressive swing, 82 mph exit velocity from the tee.

4. Connor Mapes, Champaign Central HS, MIF, Class of 2015
Athletic, 6-foot, 160-pound middle infielder. Shows excellent foot speed, 4.08 runner home to first. Defensively shows quick fluid footwork, has some body control, 72 mph arm across the diamond. Offensively hits from a balanced setup, uses short stride. Balance can improve throughout swing, shows bat speed, 81 mph exit velocity from the tee.

5. Ryne Elvers, Sacred Heart Griffin HS, MIF, Class of 2014
6-foot, 175-pound middle infielder. Defensively shows athletic feet, moves well laterally, 4.26 runner home to first. Athletic fielding position, arm action shows length, pats glove before release, long exchange, can eliminate glove pat for quicker release. Offensively swing works well, tends to hit off back side, solid balance throughout, 78 mph exit velocity.

6. Mark Martin, Evergreen Park HS, SS, Class of 2015
5-foot-11, 160-pound switch hitting shortstop. Arm action is long, high ¾ arm slot, shows accuracy across the diamond, 77 mph across the diamond. Hits from both sides of the plate, natural side from the right side, 69 mph exit velocity from the left side, 77 mph from the right side.

7. Tanner Maskey, Springfield HS, SS/3B, Class of 2015
5-foot-7, 160-pound infielder. Hands work defensively, glove shows soft feel, quick and clean exchange. Feet work quickly, choppy feet, 4.4 runner home to first. Offensively hits from a good setup, open stance, short stride. Makes hard contact, get extension, some pop.

8. Alan Sanchez, Richards HS, SS, Class of 2014
Athletic 5-foot-9, 150-pound middle infielder. Defensively shows excellent pre pitch actions. Hands work cleanly, shows softness in glove, athletic fielding actions. Arm action is short, shows carry, 76 mph across the diamond. Hits from a balanced setup, smooth load, short stride. Bat path is level, line drive hitter, gets extension, good bat path.

9. Alex DiFranco, Neuqua Valley HS, 2B/SS, Class of 2015
5-foot-10, 155-pound middle infielder. Defensively shows athleticism, fields the baseball athletically left of center, footwork shows fluidity, 4.33 runner home to first. Arm shows some accuracy across the diamond, 77 mph. Offensively, hits from an open stance, slightly longer stride. Lower half works, solid balance throughout. Bat speed present, short bat path, 80 mph exit velocity from the tee. Young middle infielder with some projection.

10. Rashid Shepard, Lincoln Park HS, MIF, Class of 2014
Strong build, 5-foot-9, 185-pound middle infielder. Offensively hits from a balanced setup, uses short stride, good balance throughout. Strong hands, aggressive swing, excellent pop and bat speed, above average barrel whip. Explosive bat speed, 97 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively shows some body control, arm action is long, shows stiffness, over the top slot, 71 mph across the diamond. Runs 4.82 home to first.

Best of the Rest (Listed Alphabetically)

Colin Andrews, St, Ignatius HS, SS/OF, Class of 2014
Athletic build, shows strength, 5-foot-10, 178-pound infielder. Defensively, shows solid hands, average athleticism, some infield actions. Arm plays at 78 mph. Offensively, hits from a balanced setup, long stride. Occasional bat speed, 86 mph exit velocity from the tee. Lunges to the baseball, needs to stay back longer. Bat speed and strength have potential.

Trey Barnes, Limestone HS, 3B/MIF, Class of 2014
Frame carries some strength, 5-foot-9, 175-pound infielder. Arm works at 74 mph across the diamond. Foot speed is evident, 4.25 runner home to first. At the plate hits from a balanced setup, no stride approach, lower half lacks involvement. Shows strength at the plate, 84 mph exit velocity from the tee, solid bat speed, gets extension.

Richard Barnum, Springfield HS, MIF/OF, Class of 2015
Undersized, 5-foot-4, 110-pounds, lacks overall strength, left handed hitting middle infielder. Defensively shows some athleticism, efficient actions, lacks arm strength, 63 mph across the diamond. Offensively hits from the left side, slightly open stance, short stride. Hands work well, bat path is compact, slap hitter, 4.38 home to first time.

Garrett Bright, Crystal Lake South HS, MIF, Class of 2015
Lanky frame, 5-foot-11, 160-pound middle infielder. Rangy infielder, shows some quickness in feet, 4.37 runner home to first. 74 mph arm strength across the diamond. Hits from a balanced setup, slight arm bar load, minimal lower half involvement. Bat path is level, line drive hitter, shows bat speed, 81 mph exit velocity from the tee.

Dominic Calamari, Cary Grove HS, SS, Class of 2016
5-foot-8, 160-pound shortstop. Offensively, hits from a balanced setup, uses short stride. Abbreviated finish, 73 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm action is long, ¾ arm slot, 68 mph across the diamond, lacks pre pitch setup.

Seth Coffey, Ottawa Township HS, SS/RHP, Class of 2014
5-foot-10, 160-pound two way player. On the mound fastball is mostly straight, thrown for strikes, 77-79 mph. Curveball has 11/5 shape, flashes sharp action, near fastball arm speed, thrown with feel in the zone, 65-67 mph. Change up lacks feel, decelerates arm speed, 69-73 mph, lacked control, pitch will improve with aggressive arm action. Offensively hits from a slightly open stance, bat wrap load, short stride approach. 75 mph exit velocity from the tee, shows some extension.

Jack Coney, Prospect HS, MIF/RHP, Class of 2016
Lanky frame, 6-foot, 150-pound two way player. On the mound, works from a high ¾ arm slot with a long loose arm action. Fastball has slight run, 74-75, touching 76 mph. Breaking ball has 11/5 shape, 62-66 mph. Changeup has sinking action, decelerates arm action, 63-68 mph. Hits from a balanced stance, slight dive to the baseball. Lower half collapses some, 66 mph exit velocity from the tee.

Ben Dolezal, Cary Grove HS, MIF, Class of 2016
5-foot-11, 154-pound middle infielder. Hands show quickness in the field, exchange is quick. Arm plays with some accuracy, 72 mph across the diamond. Hits from a balanced stance, short stride. Moderate bat speed, path is level to the baseball, line drive type hitter.

Matt Dunne, Oak Lawn HS, RHP/MIF, Class of 2014
5-foot-10, 185-pound two way player. Defensively shows an athletic release of the baseball, quick clean exchange, can release the baseball on the move. Offensively hits from a slightly open stance, level bat path, 78 mph exit velocity. From the mound uses a drop and drive style delivery, delivery is up tempo, arm action is short and from a high ¾ arm slot. Fastball is straight at 77-79 mph. Curveball has 11/5 action at 67 mph and a fading changeup at 71-73 mph.

Austin Ebeling, Wheaton HS, RHP/MIF, Class of 2014
5-foot-8, 165-pound two way player. On the mound, delivery shows effort, herky jerky actions. Arm works from a high ¾ arm slot, long arm action. Fastball flashes sink, 77-79 mph. Curveball works on 11/5 plane, shows lateral action, 66-69 mph. Changeup is straight, 73-74 mph, some feel for the pitch. Offensively, hits from a slightly open stance, bat wrap load, good setup, solid balance throughout, 72 mph exit velocity. Defensively, arm works quickly, shows quick release, 76 mph across the diamond, solid hands.

George Karavidas, Glenbrook South HS, SS/RHP, Class of 2015
5-foot-10, 165-pound left handed hitting two way player. Defensively shows some body control, average athleticism. Arm action is short and over the top, shows accuracy, 73 mph across the diamond. Offensively hits from the left side, balanced setup, short stride, toe tap trigger. Bat path shows occasional length, flashes a pull side approach, line drive hitter.

Nick Kirk, Cary Grove HS, SS/OF, Class of 2016
5-foot-10, 148-pound infielder. Defensively arm works from a ¾ slot, 69 mph across the diamond.  Runs a 4.76 home to first. Offensively hits from a wide, balanced setup, uses short stride, high back elbow. Level bat path, excellent balance throughout, lacks overall strength. Swing has potential, needs to add strength.

Alec Kozak, Sycamore HS, INF, Class of 2014
Athletic body, 5-foot-10, 180-pound infielder. Hands show a soft feel defensively, lacks footwork, 4.48 runner down the line, arm plays well, 75 mph across the diamond, exchange can be shortened. Hits from a balanced setup, uses short stide, hgh back elbow. Possesses some barrel awareness, line drive hitter, shows bat speed, 92 mph exit velocity from the tee.

Nicholas Lahrman, McHenry West HS, SS/OF/RHP, Class of 2016
Athletic frame, 5-foot-9, 150-pound two way player. Defensively shows quick feet in the field. Arm action is long, high ¾ arm slot with some accuracy (74 mph).  Offensively uses short stride, wide stance. Bat path is level, line drive hitter, two piece swing. On the mound, fastball is mostly straight, occasional run, 73-76 mph. Slider lacks action, 66-70 mph. Splitter shows occasional depth, 64-65 mph.

Troy McClaughry, McHenry HS, SS/RHP, Class of 2015
6-foot, 165-pound two way player. On the mound, arm works from a high ¾ slot, long action, long levers. Fastball is 76-78 mph, erratic action. Curveball has 11/5 shape, arm shows deceleration, 62-64 mph. Changeup has some fading action, showed the ability to throw fro strikes, 64-65 mph. Hits from a slightly closed stance, uses short stride. Some back side collapse, lacks overall balance, 76 mph exit velocity from the tee.

Jack Mellen, Illinois Valley Central HS, SS/3B, Class of 2015
5-foot-8, 145-pound switch hitting infielder. Defensively shows solid body control, fields the ball athletically, reliable hands. Arm shows some carry, long transfer, glove pat before release, some windup release. Offensively hits from both sides of the plate. Uses open stance, stride has slight dive to the plate. Left handed shows slight stiffness, right handed appears to be natural side. Showed similar exit velocities from both sides of the plate, 72 mph from the left side, 71 mph from the right side.

Kraeton Moll, Jacobs HS, MIF, Class of 2016
5-foot-7, 142-pound middle infielder, some projection. Shows athleticism defensively, quick footwork, exchange is quick and clean. Arm action is long, shows accuracy, 68 mph across the diamond. Offensively hits from a wide stance. Lower half has some collapse, gets some extension, inside out bat path, opposite field hitter. 4.83 home to first time.

Tyler Muselman, Lincoln-Way East HS, SS/RHP, Class of 2015
Lanky frame, 5-foot-9, 140-pound two way player. Defensively arm works with length, side arm release, shows some accuracy (64 mph). Offensively hits from an open stance, drops hands at load, uses slight leg kick, 70 mph exit velocity from the tee. On the mound fastball is straight, 65-67 mph. Slider has minimal action, 54-58 mph, changeup at 57-59 mph.

TJ Papousek, Joliet Catholic Academy, INF, Class of 2015
5-foot-8, 140-pound infielder. Defensively shows excellent pre pitch setup, hands are reliable, exchange is quick and clean. Arm action shows some athleticism, short loose arm, high ¾ slot, shows accuracy across the diamond, 71 mph across the diamond. Overall solid defender. Offensively hits from a balanced setup, no stride approach, arm bar load. Shows pull side tendencies, bat path promotes pull side approach, 74 mph exit velocity from the tee.

Cody Rupp, Limestone HS, MIF, Class of 2014
5-foot-7, 150-pound middle infielder. Defensively shows quick hands, some body control, plays fast. Arm shows accuracy, 77 mph across the diamond. Offensively uses short stride, loads with some bat wrap. Path is short and level, lacks some extension, repeatable swing. 81 mph exit velocity from the tee.

Christian Sanchez, Minooka HS, SS/RHP, Class of 2015
Slender build, 5-foot-11, 146-pound two way player. Over the top arm action from the outfield with some carry (81 mph). Shows some athleticism, footwork lacks consistency in the infield. Offensively hits from a balanced setup, shows some whip, level path, some uphill tendencies, 80 mph exit velocity. Works gap to gap, lacks strength, singles hitter. On the mound, fastball has run in the strike zone, 77-79 mph, flashed 80 mph. Curveball has 11/5 tilt, 66-69 mph. Change up has feel, fading action with slight sink, thrown with command, 70-72 mph. Also showed splitter with occasional life, lacked control, 66-67.

Sean Sullivan, St. Thomas Moore HS, C/INF, Class of 2014
5-foot-10, 170-pound catcher and infielder. Solid arm from behind the plate, stayed on line from a short, over the top slot, 2.12-2.25 pop times. Offensively hits from a slightly open stance, stride dives to the baseball, shows opposite field approach.

Daniel Tenayuca, Jacobs HS, RHP/INF, Class of 2015
Small frame, 5-foot-7, 135-pound two way player. Defensively plays multiple positions. In the outfield uses crow hop well, traditional outfield arm action, long over the top arm slot, 76 mph from the outfield. On the infield, fields deep, hands lack softness, 73 mph across the diamond. 4.34 home to first. Offensively, hits from slightly closed stance, slight dive over the plate. Bat path is short and level, line drive type hitter, clean bat path. Solid overall swing, lacks strength, will improve with strength.

Joe Tidaback, Providence Catholic HS, MIF, Class of 2014
5-foot-9, 160-pound middle infielder. Defensively shows solid hands with some body control. Arm strength across the diamond is 70 mph. Offensively hits from a balanced setup, shows opposite field approach, bottom hand dominant.

Cody Torres, Steinmetz HS, SS/3B, Class of 2015
5-foot-8, 174-pound infielder. Offensively hits from a balanced stance, showed comparable bat speed, 80 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively lacked arm action, 66 mph across the diamond. 4.71 runner home to first.

Brett Twohill, Lemont HS, MIF, Class of 2014
5-foot-11, 160-pound middle infielder. 71 mph arm across the diamond, 4.63 runner home to first. Hits from a balanced setup, uses short stride. Makes hard contact, some uphill path, hits off backside.

Gunner Vega, Metea Valley HS, SS, Class of 2014
6-foot-2, 165-pound middle infielder. Arm plays at 75 mph across the diamond, shows solid glove work. 4.5 runner home to first. Offensively hits from a balanced setup, heel lift trigger. Hits off back side, some uphill path. 76 mph exit velocity from the tee.

Daniel Weis, Joliet Catholic Academy, MIF, Class of 2014
Lanky athletic frame, 5-foot-10, 160-pound left handed hitting infielder. Defensively shows athletic feet, quick footwork, fields the baseball athletically. Arm plays at 70 mph across the diamond. Offensively hits from a balanced setup, slightly closed, short stride, good balance throughout. Repeatable swing, makes consistent contact, short path, line drive approach.

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