Prep Baseball Report

Illinois 2026 Rankings: Risers

Illinois Scouting Staff

Yesterday we updated our Illinois class of 2026 rankings for the first time since late March, and there was quite a bit of movement throughout. Continue reading below to see which prospects made some notable jumps up the list.

Click HERE to find the complete updated 2026 rankings.


Kamrin Jenkins SS / RHP / Oswego, IL / 2026

3/15/24: "Uncommitted, currently ranked No. 39 in the state. Lean, athletic 6-foot, 166-pound frame with a high waist and plenty of room to add on strength. Started at shortstop and hit out of the leadoff spot for the Panthers. At the plate, the right-handed hitter impressed with his patience, not getting rushed or sped up and waiting on his pitch, also taking advantage of it when he got it, lifting a long home run over the left field wall. It’s a loose and easy swing, utilizing some rhythm in his hands with a controlled load, looks to try and stay on top of the ball, projects into more power as he matures. Above-average actions and feel for the position at shortstop, confident in his hands and with taking charge on plays, wants the ball hit to him. High-follow shortstop with a high ceiling."

Keaton Reinke OF / RHP / St. Charles North, IL / 2026

5/10/24: "Uncommitted. Currently ranked No. 21 in the state. Highly projectable and athletic 6-foot-4, 198-pound frame. Got the start on the mound for the Stars and threw it well despite some defensive miscues. Easy, simple delivery, medium balance point with a slight coil, leads with front hip down the mound with a drop/drive lower-half that starts with a pre-set back knee, works in-line. Long arm action in the back, delivers his arsenal from a high ¾ release. The fastball played with easy life out of his hand in the 86-88 mph range, topping out at 89 mph into the second inning while playing with some noticeable arm-side life. His breaking ball got better as his outing went on, playing around 75-77 mph, gained sharpness and feel as the outing went on, 11/5 plane for strikes and S/M. Flashed a straight change at 76-78 mph. High-ceiling 2026 in the state to keep tabs on."

Frank Costabile OF / RHP / Stevenson, IL / 2026

5/15/24: "Uncommitted. Currently ranked No. 14 in the state. Compact, 5-foot-9, 165-pound frame, round shoulders with strength throughout. Came out of the ‘pen and displayed premium arm talent. Easy mover with little perceived effort, clean operation, gets into his legs and works in-line, creates quality hip/shoulder separation. Creates above-average arm-speed that plays into a ¾ slot. Fastball cruised at 89-90 mph, working to both the bottom and top of the zone, holds plane with carry. Gained confidence in his slider that played at 81-83 mph, throws with intent, able to land for strikes and to put hitters away to his glove-side, played with sharp 10/4 action and late depth. Strong right-handed hitter, shot a double that nearly left the yard to the opposite field gap, strong/quick hands that gets extension and stays through the ball. High-level two-way prospect to know in the state."

Adam Swanson C / RHP / Ottawa Township, IL / 2026

2/24/24: "C Adam Swanson (Ottawa Township, 2026) is a no-doubt name to know from the event, showing well across the board this past weekend. Listed at 5-foot-10, 186-pounds with round/sloped shoulders and strength throughout, the right-handed hitter put on a show in BP with a max EV of 99.9 mph, averaging 95.1 mph throughout his round with a strong, easy swing that stays through the zone with a balanced finish. He took an impressive round of defense, working with a quick/clean glove-to-hand transfer, staying in-line while gaining ground on throws to second to create a pop-time as low as 1.87 seconds. His arm is also plenty strong, playing quick to release at 80 mph. He’s also a premium athlete, recording a 6.71 in the 60 to pair with a 35.9” max vertical jump." 

Luke Blackwell RHP / 3B / Valmeyer High School, IL / 2026

4/30/24: "Strong, physically advanced 6-foot-3, 195-pound sophomore that really looks the part in a uniform. Took the mound for the Pirates in a win over Dupo, punching out 13 over six innings of work with an earned run allowed on five hits. Works with tempo and rhythm, gets onto his backside, level shoulders work into a strong glove arm tuck, open toe at footstrike. Finishes with intent through release and onto a firm lead leg that sticks the landing consistently. Tight compact arm path, high ¾ finish with arm speed. Fastball held 86-89 mph throughout his outing, touched 89 multiple times late, with true hard arm-side run that covered the entire plate. Flashed tight slider with subtle tilt at 78-80 mph, used sparingly, and also showed feel for a fading changeup in warmups but did not show it in-game. Physically built small town multi-sport athlete that holds a high ceiling on the hill."

Cory Les SS / 3B / St. Laurence, IL / 2026

5/29/24: "Les is a physical left-handed hitter who looked natural starting in center field this spring despite being fairly new to the position. Listed at 6-foot, 205-pounds, Les turned in above-average run times for his age; 4.43 down the line and put together a number of quality at-bats in a look this spring. There is minimal wasted movement, strong hands, present bat speed and all kinds of loud contact off the barrel with the ability to use the whole field. If he can continue to profile as a center fielder his stock should only rise moving forward."

Brandon Thomsen C / 3B / St Viator, IL / 2026

4/20/24: "Uncommitted, currently ranked No. 33 in the state, and measures in at a lean 6-foot-1, 188-pounds. Started behind the plate for the Lions and batted out of the three-hole. Defensively, he looks the part of a high-level defender in the sophomore class. He’s flexible and looks comfortable in the crouch, he is a soft receiver, and a willing blocker. Thomsen didn’t get to show off his arm in-game but in between innings it played strong and true with accuracy to the bag. Offensively, the right-handed hitter has a tall setup in the box with rhythmic pre-pitch movement. He uses a barrel-tip load to pair with a short leg kick stride, while utilizing a strong lower half when he swings. Thomsen has a flat bat path, capable of line drive contact, and finished the day 1-for-3."

Dylan Kassab C / 1B / Hinsdale Central, IL / 2026

4/19/24: "Uncommitted. Currently ranked No. 34 in the state. 5-foot-10, 190-pound frame, some strength throughout his build. Started behind the plate and hit out of the three-hole for the Red Devils, recording two hits on the day with a double, single and an RBI. Strong right-handed swing, flat path, creates some bat-speed through the zone, controlled aggression. Strong defender behind the plate with steady hands, active blocker, limits the run game with a quick glove-to-hand, strong arm plays with life and carry, plays true and on the bag. High-follow 2026 prospect."

Chase Lockwood RHP / 3B / Libertyville High School, IL / 2026

4/23/24: "Mentioned in our Week 5 Scout Blog for his day at the plate, the uncommitted Sophomore got the start on the mound for the Wildcats. Lockwood gave his team a strong pitching performance, going 6 1/3 innings with seven strikeouts, two walks, two runs (one earned) and nine hits allowed. Lockwood had a 66% strike rate over his outing with two innings of multiple strikeouts. He showed a three-pitch mix, utilizing a fastball, slider and change-up. His fastball plays easy out of the hand and firm through the zone with occasional run, sitting 82-85 mph throughout. Backing the fastball was a slider with late action that generates soft contact and swing-and-miss, sitting 70-73 mph. Lockwood flashed the changeup at times, showing a similar profile as the fastball, coming in at 78-80 mph. At the plate, Lockwood went 1-for-4 at the plate with two RBIs."

Braydon McKendrick LHP / OF / Brother Rice, IL / 2026

3/16/24: "Uncommitted. Ranked No. 34 in the state’s sophomore class. 5-foot-10, 176.6-pound frame with strength and athleticism throughout. Provided a quality and polished look for a sophomore, showed the ability to command pitches, including having a feel for his off-speed pitches. Repeats his delivery, easy mover down the mound, has a long and loose arm path out of a ¾ slot. His fastball sat 83-85 mph with slight cut. Mixed in two separate breaking balls; a slider that sat 72-75 mph with 2/8 shape and 2200-2400 rpm, and a curveball that sat 67-69 mph with 12/6 shape and 2300-2500 rpm. A high-level arm in the state’s 2026 class."

Patrick Connors OF / 2B / Hinsdale Central, IL / 2026

8/8/23: "OF/INF Patrick Connors (Hinsdale Central, 2026) impressed at this event last year, and the right-handed hitting utility man continues to look the part as an advanced right-handed bat in the state’s sophomore group. In BP, Connors swung a clean, controlled barrel with a loose, easy all-around operation that consistently stayed on the barrel. He translated that knack for hitting to the gameplay portion, where Connors totaled four hits, and he didn’t strikeout, either. Defensively, Connors is a free-flowing mover in the outfield with confident, athletic actions to pair."

Chase Milburn RHP / 3B / Edwardsville , IL / 2026

5/22/24: "6-foot-2, 195-pound frame with well-proportioned strength throughout and room to tack on more, ranked No. 50 overall in the state’s sophomore class. Turned in an excellent start for the Tigers in their regional semi-final win, tossing a complete game shutout with three hits, one walk, and four strikeouts on just 69 pitches. Works in rhythm and controls the game with a slowed heart rate. Hunched at balance point, front side stays closed, drop/drive delivery with an in-line finish through a firm lead leg. Arm plays with some reach on the backside, continuous through release from a high ¾ slot. Advanced feel to pitch, knows how to mix-and-mitch and keep hitters off balance. Showed four pitches in this look, all of them for strikes. Fastball played in the low-80s, touching 84 mph a handful of times in the first two innings, with some downhill action on the corners. Spun two different breaking balls; a tight upper-70s slider that holds plane with late action to it and a high-arching, bendy curveball at 64-66 mph that he used as a change of pace pitch. Threw a changeup at fastball arm speed to left-handed hitters at 74-75 mph that showed natural fade. Starter profile that has done nothing but perform when called upon for the Tigers this season."

Johnny Nelson SS / RHP / Oak Park-River Forest, IL / 2026

5/8/24: "Uncommitted. Currently ranked No. 51 in the state. Lean and projectable 6-foot-2, 173-pound frame with some strength, still has plenty of room to add on. Started at third base and hit out of the six-hole for the Huskies as a sophomore. The right-handed hitter has a loose, upside swing that creates easy power to the gaps, working to stay short to the ball with quick hands; finished the day with three barrels but only one hit to show for it, being a double to the left/center gap. Quality defender at third, moves well around the bag with soft hands, arm plays with life across the diamond. High-follow 2026 in the state."

Jack Schiek RHP / 3B / Lockport, IL / 2026

2/19/24: "RHP/INF Jack Schiek (Lockport, 2026) impressed on both sides of the ball on Monday, particularly on the mound. Listed at a lean and projectable 6-foot-2, 155-pounds, the right-hander has a balanced delivery with an athletic and clean operation, utilizing a full arm loop with some quickness out front. His fastball played in the 82-85 mph range with carry and over 2,300 rpm at times. He went to two different breaking balls, the first being a curveball at 68-71 mph with depth off an 11/5 plane, while the second was a tighter lateral slider at 71-72 mph, showing some feel for both offerings. Lastly, he went to a straight changeup at 76-78 mph, maintaining arm-speed throughout. At the plate, the right-handed hitter has a level bat path, creating extension through the zone while working line-drives up the middle with some natural life at times, utilizing his levers well. On the infield, Schiek has smooth hands with quality actions, reaching up to 82 mph across the diamond with a loose arm."

Jailen Veliz SS / 2B / Yorkville, IL / 2026

4/18/24: "Uncommitted. The right-handed hitting infielder is currently ranked No. 56 in the State. Veliz was slotted into the sixth hole and played third base for the Foxes. In the box, Veliz is in an athletic, crouched position with a wide base. Loads slightly into the back leg with a quick toe tap trigger to start the swing. Quick, compact swing through the zone allows him to hit the ball where it's pitched with purpose. With two outs and a 2-2 count during his first at-bat, Veliz was able to stay short to the baseball to record a sharply hit single to center field for a single and score a run. His second at-bat, Veliz kept his hands inside the ball to go the other way and drive in another run. Defensilvey, has quick, controlled actions to the baseball with athletic hands."

Jacob Matise RHP / 3B / Mt. Carmel - Chicago, IL / 2026

5/25/24: "Uncommitted. Currently ranked No. 93 in the state. 6-foot-1, 173-pound frame, athletic with a high waist, room to add strength. The right-hander got the start for the Caravan and threw the ball well to help them claim their regional championship, firing a complete game (7IP) with just four hits allowed, one earned run, one walk and nine strikeouts. He moves well down the mound with a fluid tempo and uninterrupted arm action, getting into his legs while staying in-line and delivering his arsenal from a high ¾ window. His fastball cruised around 82-84 mph, topping out at 85 mph with the ability to move it to both sides of the plate. His curveball was his out-pitch, going to it regularly for swing/miss around 67-69 mph with 11/5 shape and feel. He also flashed a straight changeup in the mid/upper-70s. Definitely an arm to follow moving forward."

Anthony Chavez 1B / LHP / Mount Carmel, IL / 2026

4/15/24: "Uncommitted. Currently ranked No. 65 in the state, went 2-for-2 with a double, a walk and a run scored out of the three-hole for Mt. Carmel. We saw Chavez two weeks ago, and he was on the barrel more consistently in this look. The left-handed hitter had a patient, yet mature approach Monday; not chasing pitches out of the zone, and getting quality swings off on pitches in the zone. He also showed an above-average arm for the first base position before the game during I/O, playing loose and easy with carry on his throws. Chavez is another sophomore to continue to monitor for the Caravan."

Colton Benaitis C / 3B / Lockport, IL / 2026

4/17/24: "Uncommitted. Currently ranked No. 90 in the state. Lean, wiry 6-foot, 165-pound frame, projectable with room to fill out. Started at third base and hit out of the two-hole for the Porters. Simple right-handed swing with little wasted movement, stays short to the ball, works to stay on top with quality bat-to-ball skills, showed the ability to battle and handle 90+ mph throughout his at-bats. Steady, sure-handed actions at third base. Follow 2025 prospect." 

Johnny Andretich OF / 1B / Plainfield North, IL / 2026

10/15/23: "OF Johnny Andretich (Plainfield North, 2026) is an athletic left/left prospect that showed well at the plate in Sunday’s look. Andretich worked on the barrel to the middle of the field, keeping a level barrel through the zone with strong hands to pair. Andretich also ran a 7.12 60 with quick, athletic feet from the outfield."

Related Content