Analyzing the Middle Infielders at the Pre-Season All State Showcase



By Chris Fuller and Mike Clark 

As we continue our in depth look and player write-ups from the Pre-Season All State Showcase, today we take a look at the middle infielders as some high-level prospects emerged from the event.  Several of those prospects are from the 2014 class, led by Ballard HS shortstop Trevor Putzig.  The more we see of Putzig (we first saw him in Louisville last month), the more he continues to impress.  Putzig is one of those players you just get a feeling about.  There is no disputing his measurable skills as he runs well (7.10), has very good arm strength (87 mph), and bat speed (88 mph exit velocity).  What I’m talking about is he is the kind of guy I want at the plate with the tying run on 2nd base and two outs in the last inning, the kind of player who thrives in pressure situations; that’s just the feeling I get about him. 

Also impressive in the class of 2014 were Beechwood SS Jason Suchanek, Mayfield SS Stuart Mills, and Ryle SS Mason Forbes, with several other solid performances coming from the class as well. 

The class of 2015 also produced a few impressive prospects as North Oldham SS Roman Millem was even more impressive than when we first saw him a month ago at our Louisville Prospect ID Showcase.  Scott County SS Bo Saunders also showed well and established himself as a prospect to follow in the 2015 class. 

A trio of unsigned seniors showed they have the potential to play at the next level in Campbell County SS Tyler Walsh, Trinity SS Connor Hill, and South Laurel SS Alex Sears (likely projects as corner infielder). 

Let’s get to the details. 

Top 2013 Middle Infielders 

1. Tyler Walsh, SS/OF/RHP, Campbell County HS, Class of 2013
6-foot, 180-pound prospect with athletic build, shows soft hands in infield, feet can be more fluid at times, good arm strength across the field at 82 mph, also showed 83 mph arm strength from outfield.  At the plate, he has a balanced setup, starts with bat on the shoulder and gets it off his shoulder on his load, takes a small stride with a nice rhythm, shows quick hands and good extension through the ball, good use of lower half in swing and weight transfer to a stiff front side, shows some power in swing with an 89 mph tee exit velocity, ran 7.22 60 yard dash.  Solid unsigned 2013 prospect. 

2. Connor Hill, SS, Trinity HS, Class of 2013
6-foot, 190-pound prospect with strong legs.  Defensively, shows soft hands and fluid footwork, plays through the ball, accurate arm, playable arm strength at 79 mph across the infield.  Offensively, starts with an athletic, balanced stance, uses a leg kick trigger, he is able to get foot down early to allow for good lower half approach generating good bat speed into the zone, hits with a stiff front side and high follow through to generate some power, showed good barrel awareness consistently squaring the ball up in his round, ran 7.16 60 yard dash, 85 mph tee exit velocity.  Hill is a solid unsigned 2013 prospect. 

3. Alex Sears, SS, South Laurel HS, Class of 2013
6-foot-4, 210-pound prospect, with a big, strong frame.  Defensively, seemed to have trouble keeping footing during evaluation, arm strength 75 mph across the infield.  At the plate, hits from a balanced setup, uses a big leg kick trigger, gets front foot down on time, shows good lower half torque in swing generating quick bat speed into the zone, shows strength in swing, projects to hit for power, consistently squared the ball up and hit a round full of hard line drives,registered 87 mph tee exit velocity. 

Top 2014 Middle Infielders 

1. Trevor Putzig, SS, Ballard HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-10, 170-pound prospect with athletic build.  Putzig is an impressive all around player, a sure Division I middle infield prospect.  Defensively, he shows soft hands, fluid footwork, and plays through the ball well with advanced arm strength of 87 mph across the field. At the plate, starts in an athletic position with front foot closed, back shoulder tall and hands slightly below back shoulder, smooth load, good lower half torque to generate power and weight transfer to a stiff front side allowing for a long high finish.  His advanced approach will make him a projectable D1 player, ran 7.10 60 yard dash, registered tee exit velocity of 88 mph. 

2. Jason Suchanek, SS/OF, Beechwood HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-9, 165-pound prospect with strong lower half.  An all around impressive player that projects to be a high-level prospect.  Defensively, shows soft hands, good actions, fluid footwork, strong and accurate arm at 84 mph across the infield, also shows well in outfield playing through the ball with event best 89 mph arm strength.  At the plate, he uses a balanced setup with a high leg kick trigger and slight load, does a good job of getting front foot down, gets some lower half involved in swing but hips stop at contact causing some power loss due to front side being closed off, shows ability to square the ball on the barrel with a gap to gap approach, has some power potential with complete use of lower half, ran 6.96 60 yard dash, registered 86 mph tee exit velocity  Suchanek is a solid, high-level 2014 prospect.

 3. Stuart Mills, SS, Mayfield HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-8, 178-pound prospect with strong lower half.  Defensively, shows soft hands, good infield actions, strong arm across the field at 83 mph.  At the plate, hits from a balanced, athletic setup, he uses a small stride and smooth load, has an explosive lower half and plus bat speed through the zone with some slight uppercut, registered a 90 mph tee exit velocity.  He showed one of the best bat speeds in the event.  Mills projects to be a high-level 2014 prospect. 

4. Mason Forbes, SS/OF, Ryle HS, Class of 2014
6-foot, 168-pound prospect, defensively shows good footwork in infield, plays through the ball, hands showed definite improvement over previous showcase, good arm strength at 82 mph across the infield, good actions in outfield, ball comes out clean, 82 mph arm strength from outfield.  At the plate, he uses an open stance with high hand position and a slight bat wrap, has made significant adjustments to stride length by showing shorter stride and better balance, able to generate good lower half torque and transfers weight into a stiff front leg allowing for good extension with a slight upward bat path, generates good bat speed into the zone, ran 7.27 60 yard dash, registered 90 mph tee exit velocity.  Forbes is a definite prospect to follow in the 2014 class. 

5. Zac Ching, SS/RHP, Bullitt East HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-9, 155-pound prospect, shows quick exchange and short arm action, good arm strength across the field at 83 mph, footwork can be more fluid. At the plate, he uses a slightly open stance, wraps the bat and bars arm, uses a big leg kick trigger which generates power and uses a big finish through the ball, gets lower half torque in swing to create bat speed into the zone, registered an event best 91 mph tee exit velocity. 

6. Jeremy Downs, SS/OF, Ryle HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-9, 150-pound prospect, shows good infield actions, hands work, good lateral movement and footwork, solid arm strength at 79 mph across the field, also shows athletic actions in the outfield and plays through the ball extremely well, 85 mph arm strength from the outfield.  At the plate, starts in a balanced setup with the front foot turned in, has a fluid load with good weight transfer and backside turn.  Hits with a stiff front side and drives through the ball using a big follow through, registered 80 mph tee exit velocity, ran 7.38 60 yard dash. 

7. Cameron Ross, 2B/OF/RHP, Conner HS, Class of 2014
6-foot-1, 165-pound prospect, shows good athleticism, good arm strength across the infield at 81 mph, has a tendency to field ball deep and on heels, showed athletic actions in outfield playing though the ball, very good arm strength from outfield at 87 mph.  At the plate, starts his swing in a tall position with feet close together, uses a long stride, getting out past shoulder width, even with all of the movement keeps hands above the ball with a slight uppercut as he finishes swing, gets good lower half torque in swing, could have some timing issues as he faces tougher pitchers with good off speed pitches with the narrow setup and long stride, good athlete ran an event best 6.80 60 yard dash, 83 mph tee exit velocity. 

Top 2015 Infielders

1. Roman Millem, SS/OF, North Oldham HS, Class of 2015
6-foot-1, 161-pound athletic prospect.  Defensively, shows good infield actions, hands work, fluid footwork, plays through the ball, strong/accurate arm at 83 mph across the infield, also shows athletic actions in outfield, good outfield arm strength at 85 mph.  At the plate starts in an athletic stance, slightly open, short stride, uses hands well to get a quick path to the ball, gets good lower half torque in swing, hits off a stiff front side with a good follow through, had a good round consistently squaring the ball up, had an 84 mph tee exit velocity, runs well with a 6.99 60 yard dash.  Millem has the tools to be a potential high-level prospect in the class of 2015. 

2. Bo Saunders, SS, Scott County HS, Class of 2015
5-foot-11, 160 pound prospect, shows good infield actions and lateral movement, plays through the ball well, 76 mph arm strength across the field with more to come.  At the plate he starts in an athletic stance with some pre pitch movement, smooth load, short stride, shoulder level hand trigger, uses his lower half to get torque in his swing and gets good backside turn along with a stiff front leg at contact, path to the ball is short and generates good bat speed into the zone, ran 7.2 60 yard dash, 81 mph tee exit velocity.  Solid 2015 prospect. 

Best of the rest (alphabetical order)


Grant Anderson, SS, Prestonburg HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-11, 182-pound prospect.  Defensively, shows good lateral movement, arm strength across the field at 73 mph.  At the plate, starts in a balanced stance, short stride, tends to wrap bat in load, gets some lower half torque in swing to generate moderate bat speed into the zone, registered 79 mph tee exit velocity, ran 7.34 60 yard dash. 

Jarrod Ball, SS/OF, Owen County HS, Class of 2014
6-foot-1, 150-pound prospect with lanky build.  Defensively, hands work, room to improve footwork, accurate arm across the infield at 74 mph, arm strength from the outfield at 73 mph.  At the plate, starts with a balanced, athletic stance with front foot slightly open, lifts front foot to stride, hands load down and back with a slight arm bar,  stays behind a stiff front side at contact, uses good extension and big follow through to generate a line drive swing, registered 81 mph tee exit velocity. 

Barron Blackford, 2B, East Jessamine HS, Class of 2015
6-foot, 150-pound prospect with lanky build, shows good hands, feet work, arm strength at 69 mph across the field, room to fill on frame and continue to develop arm strength.  At the plate, has a slightly open stance with a toe tap trigger, bars arm and wraps bat in load, chest level hand trigger, flat bat path, gets some lower half torque in swing, registered 78 mph tee exit velocity. 

Hunter Dunn, RHP/SS, Cooper HS, Class of 2014
6-foot-2, 185-pound prospect.  Defensively, shows good arm strength across the field at 80 mph, needs to improve hands and footwork.  At the plate, has a tall narrow stance at the plate with a short stride.  His hands drop as he loads, gets some lower half involved in swing.  Could get more weight transfer into the ball with better lower half torque, uses a stiff front side, registered 86 mph tee exit velocity, ran 7.19 60 yard dash. 

Darien Huff, SS/OF/RHP, Boone County HS, Class of 2014
6-foot, 170-pound prospect with athletic frame.  Defensively, hands work, has tendency to field ball on heels which will improve with more fluid footwork, shows good arm strength across the field at 81 mph, as an outfielder ball comes out clean, 83 mph arm strength.  Offensively, starts with a slightly open stance, short stride, body drifts forward at start of his swing causing for head movement, hands start back at shoulder level with an arm bar in load, can incorporate better lower half torque in swing to generate more bat speed, ran 7.35 60 yard dash.

John Masterson, 2B, Fairdale HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-10, 140-pound prospect, needs to continue working on hands and footwork, arm strength of 70 mph across the field.  At the plate, starts in a balanced, crouch setup, short stride, hands drop and slight arm bar in load, uses lower half to get backside turn and while staying behind his stiff front foot at contact.  He gets extended a little early, could benefit from letting ball get deeper, gets some lower half involved in his swing, ran 7.64 60 yard dash. 

Shunta Muto, SS, Bardstown HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-9, 135-pound prospect with small build.  Defensively, shows soft hands, good footwork, short arm action with 74 mph arm strength across the field, likely projects as 2B at next level. At the plate, starts with back foot turned towards the pitcher, open stance, bat wrap and arm bar in load, short stride, lacks complete use of lower half, arm bar causes him to get extended behind the plate making the bat drag through the zone, ran 7.38 60 yard dash, tee exit velocity of 81 mph.

Rex Rogers, 2B, St, Henry HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-11, 167-pound prospect, plays through the ball, hands work, arm strength of 75 mph across the infield.  At the plate, starts with a balanced setup with hands below the back shoulder, hands drop in load, short stride, front foot opens up early causing front foot to roll over on some swings, lower hand position causes him to bar the arm , lacks complete use of lower half in swing, runs well with 6.96 60 yard dash, registered 80 mph tee exit velocity.

Kyle Stevens, 2B, Western Hills HS, Class of 2014
5-foot-8, 165-pound prospect, shows good footwork and lateral movement, hands need to improve, fields ball deep, 75 mph arm strength across the field.  At the plate, starts with an athletic stance with hands high, short stride and stiff front side. Showed signs of backside turn on some swings gets good extension through the ball, registered 83 mph tee exit velocity.



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