Recruiting Roundup: 12/15-12/31

By Andy Sroka
Staff Writer

For the last couple of weeks, we’ve been collecting the top-10 storylines of 2018 as well as the most-viewed player profiles of the year. To officially close out the year, we’ll compile the year’s final Recruiting Roundup. Despite it being the holiday season, there were still plenty of college commitments made over the past two weeks, including a few high-profile underclassmen.

So, with that, let’s get to the last set of prospects who announced their commitments before the new year.


Tristan Cazel RHP / St. Charles North, IL / 2019


6/12/18 - 6-foot, 180-pound, athletic, strong frame, lower half and shoulders continue to broaden, right-handed pitcher. Ultra fast tempo, smooth rhythm, drop and drive delivery works on-line, lands toe open, finishes athletically. Short, loose arm action, short stab on back-side, arm works quickly to get out front. Fastball, late run action, thrown with intent, kept in zone, sat 85-87. Curveball, maintains arm speed, 11/5 shape, sharp action, located low in the zone, 70-71. Splitter, maintains slot and speed, tumble action, 76-80.

Justin Gasper RHP / Lockport, IL / 2019


10/7/18 - 6-foot-1, 181-pound right-handed pitcher with some projection. Works from over-the-top slot, long arm action. Tall-and-fall type with high front side, some rhythm, lands square. Fastball, occasional tilt, sat 79-81 mph, touched 83. Curveball, 12/6 shape, 65-67 mph. Changeup, thrown near-fastball arm speed, some fade, 71-72 mph.

Ben Harris RHP / C / Prairie Ridge , IL / 2019


8/7/18 - 6-foot-3, 170-pound, athletically-built, two-way prospect with plenty of room for continued physical development. At the plate, right-handed hitter, balanced setup, pre-pitch load, leg-kick timing trigger and maintains balance. Fluid rhythm, loose hands, creates bat speed at times, gap-to-gap approach and registered an 84 mph exit velocity from a tee. Singled and scored a run in game play. 7.22 runner in the 60, laser-timed. Defensively, quick feet, athletic out of the crouch, stays on-line. Short, quick arm action, throws have life, clocked at 76 mph from the crouch. Pop times ranged between 1.97-2.15. On the mound, right-handed pitcher, compact, repeatable delivery, works on-line and lands slightly closed. Short, loose, quick arm action from a high ¾ slot. Fastball, arm-side-run, sat 85-87 mph. Slider, flashed sharp action, 11/5 plane, 72-73 mph. Saw one changeup at 77 mph. Should be a high-follow unsigned senior moving forward.

Will Hissong OF / Hononegah, IL / 2019


10/7/18 - 5-foot-11, 155-pound left-handed hitting outfielder, lean lanky frame. Hits from a balanced stance, loads hands back with leg kick trigger, average balance. Bat path is level, made line drive contact in BP, favors pull side showed gap to gap abilities. 87 mph exit velocity from the tee. Defensively arm plays long out of a high ¾ slot, 83 mph from the outfield. Actions showed ability to play through the baseball. 7.75 runner in the 60. On the mound works from a tall and fall delivery, stays level and balanced, uses slide step in stretch. Fastball plays 78-80 mph. Curveball has 11/5 shape, 66-69 mph. Changeup has above average action for age, works with arm speed and fades, 70-73 mph.

Charlie Hodges RHP / Delavan, IL / 2019


2/26/17 - The 6-foot-2, 175 pound lanky right-handed pitcher possesses a drop and drive delivery with some arm speed.  Stays in line, level shoulders. Finishes athletically. Fastball sat 82-83, touching 85 with command at the knees. Room to fill in physically and add more velocity.  Change-up was erratic, missing high at times. Breaking ball sat 64-68 with 11/5 shape and some late depth. Athletic frame, follow in 2019 class.

Dominic Listi OF / LHP / Prairie Ridge, IL / 2019


8/7/18 - 6-foot, 178-pound, left-handed hitting two-way player, athletic frame translates to the field. Defensively, natural actions, feet work in rhythm, gets behind the baseball, exchanges are quick and clean, plays through with soft hands. Arm is long and loose with present arm speed, clean, high ¾ slot, throws carried with accuracy, topped 87 mph from the outfield. At the plate, wide setup, drop/bar load, long toe tap trigger. Strong hands, long, uphill bat path, flashed line drive ability, present bat speed, exit velocity topped 90 mph from a tee. Went 2-for-2 in gameplay with a double to centerfield and a single to the pull side. Also, stole second base, 7.27 runner in the 60. On the mound, repeatable, hybrid delivery, works in-line, lands square, athletic finish, rhythm involved. Arm is long and loose, speeds up through window, clean high ¾ slot. Fastball, some late run, mostly straight, topped 83 mph, sat 80-82 mph. Feel for curveball, 1/7 shape for strikes with arm speed, 66-69 mph. Changeup played at 72 mph.

Daniel Marion OF / West Aurora, IL / 2019


8/7/18 - 5-foot-8, 210-pound, right-handed hitting outfielder, thick build, present strength in frame. At the plate, balanced, wide setup, back load, short stride. Short, uphill bat path, gap to gap approach with power potential, hard contact, rhythm involved. Strength in hands generated present bat speed, exit velocity topped 89 mph from a tee. Defensively, fluid footwork, clean exchanges, plays through the baseball. Long arm action, over the top slot, throws topped 73 mph from the outfield. 7.62 runner in the 60.

Ryan McGrath RHP / St. Laurence, IL / 2019


10/7/18 - 5-foot-10, 187-pound right-handed pitcher, sturdy build, solid lower half. Works fast and uptempo, lands closed and in rhythm. Arm plays over the top, short quick draw. Fastball is straight, 77-78 mph, touched 79 mph. Curveball has 11/5 shape, gradual action, better feel out of the stretch, 63-65 mph. Changeup is straight, 68-74 mph.

Elijah Paplanus RHP / Huntley, IL / 2019


7/18/17 - 6-foot, 160-pound right-handed hitting utility player. On the mound works from a ¾ arm a ¾ arm angle with a long arm action. Drop and drive delivery with some rhythm. Fastball flashed running action at 79-81 mph. Curveball has 11-5 shape at 65-66 mph. Changeup sat 70-73 mph. At the plate hits from a tall, closed setup with a long stride. Pull hitter with a long, uphill swing path. 86 mph exit velocity from a tee. Ran the 60 at 7.23. Defensively took drills in both the infield and the outfield. Threw 81 mph across the infield and 79 mph from the outfield.

Davis Pasco RHP/ OF / Huntley, IL / 2019


1/28/18 - 6-foot, 160-pound, well-proportioned, two-way prospect. Right-handed hitter, balanced setup, short stride and simple overall approach. Short bat path, line-drive type and 81 mph exit velocity from a tee. In the outfield, works through the ball, long arm action, high ¾ slot and throws topped at 82 mph. 4.51 home-to-first runner. On the mound, right-handed pitcher, delivery works with some rhythm, lands square with regular effort throughout. Long, loose arm action, high ¾ slot. Fastball, slight arm-side-run, 78-79 mph, touched 80. Curveball, sweeping 10/4 shape, slider action at times, thrown for strikes, 66-68 mph.Changeup, sink and fade action, thrown for strikes, 71-73 mph.

Christian Scianna INF / Jacobs, IL / 2019


2/26/17 - 5-foot-6, 145-pound, right-handed hitting second baseman. Offensively, flashed bat speed, hard contact, lift in swing. Recorded an exit velocity of 87 mph. Open setup with a leg lift timing trigger. Defensively, soft hands, fluid footwork, quick and clean exchange, athletic fielding position. Long arm action with the ability to throw from multiple angles. Throws flashed accuracy and were clocked at 80 mph across the diamond.

Jordan Veldman C / Mahomet-Seymour, IL / 2019


8/9/17 - 5-foot-11, 158-pound, right-handed hitting catcher and middle infielder. Offensively, open setup, short stride, maintains good balance. Line drive approach, present bat speed, level barrel path, gains extension, fluid rhythm, 83 mph exit velocity. Ran a 7.29 60. Defensively, behind the plate traditional catcher’s arm action, short, over-the-top slot, accurate, fluid footwork, clean exchanges, 72 mph from the crouch, pop times between 2.18-2.29. In the field, short arm action, over-the-top slot, fluid footwork, clean exchanges, maintains body control, 76 mph across the infield.


Gage Armstrong IL Sycamore C Rock Valley JC
Ryan Doubek IL Marist OF Benedictine
T.J. Fleita IL Maine South RHP Illinois Central College
Jack Flynders IL Providence Catholic 1B/OF Kishwaukee JC
Peyton Stegeman IL Quincy Notre Dame SS Illinois College


Noah DeLuga LHP / Lake Zurich, IL / 2020


4/24/18 - Currently ranked No. 12 in Illinois’ Class of 2020. 6-foot, 175-pound left-handed pitcher, proportionally built with strong, broad shoulders. Had previously worked exclusively out of the stretch, featured a simple wind up delivery this outing, still with lift to squared landing. High ¾ slot, arm action is long on the backside, has seemingly smoothed out wrist action at the apex of his draw, works loosely and quickly out front. Fastball, slight armside run, sat 88-89, touching 91 in the first inning, dipped slightly to 86-88 by the fifth (last seen sitting 84-86 @ Underclass Invitational on 2.18.18). Curveball, 72-76, 2/8 shape, sharp action, can manipulate into a sweeping action, on occasion arm action becomes too long on the backside causing him to miss high and away to righties. Tossed 5.0 innings against Lake Forest, allowing five hits and one earned run while striking out 12. 

Dane Thomas OF / Marist, IL / 2020


5/17/18 - Currently ranked No. 32 in the Illinois 2020 class. 5-foot-10, 155-pound, left-handed hitting, outfielder, thin frame, athletic build, plays bigger than listed size. Hit in the two-hole and manned centerfield for the Redhawks finishing 0-for-1 with three walks, two runs and a stolen base. Walked on four straight balls twice and again on five, confidently taking balls just missing the strike zone. Calm pre-swing, even setup, short toe-tap trigger, maintains balance. Loose hands, level path, rhythm in swing. Hustles out of the box and regularly looks to advance to the next base. Defensively profiles as centerfielder. Can easily cover ground in the gaps and make plays confidently in stride. Arm plays, hit the cut-offs, quick release, high ¾ slot.


Joshua McAlister SS / Homewood-Flossmoor, IL / 2021


A toolsy, athletic middle infield with a lot of raw talent. He has a chance to impact the varsity roster as a sophomore on a loaded Homewood-Flossmoor squad this spring.