Prep Baseball Report

MD/DE 2026 Rankings: Risers

Jamie Naill
Maryland Scouting Director

Follow @PBRMaryland
 + Instagram

Over the course of the last few weeks, our staff has updated the Class of 2024 and 2025 Rankings, and now turn our attention to the Class of 2026. Yesterday, our staff highlighted six highly talented players that enter the rankings for the first time, and today we take a look at five players who make a notable rise in the Top 100.

Click HERE to see the "New Faces" story.



Kai Schmelzer C / 3B / Wootton , MD / 2026

Schmelzer adds his name to a very short list of players that exceed expectations each time our staff sees him, and once again the Wootton backstop shined at the Mid-Atlantic State Games in November. The impact on the game, both offensively and defensively has always been a forefront and something that stands out immediately. The hit tool continues to make strides, with feel for the barrel and the ability to showcase an uptick in power increasing quickly, while remaining consistent to a whole field line drive approach. Although the hit tool is present, the defensive actions is what makes Schmelzer so special and the added arm strength only increases the stock.     

Arian Vargas RHP / Archbishop Spalding , MD / 2026

An arm making a huge jump in this week's update, the 6-foot-2, 190 pound righty has some of the more high octane stuff in the class. It's a controlled, high intent makeup with quick arm speed through release, working the fastball steadily into the mid to upper 80's with a sharp, downer breaking ball and developing feel for the changeup. Feel for the zone, with the ability to induce swing and miss consistently in and out of the zone makes for this to be one of the more enticing arms to get eyes on heading into the winter months.  

Parker Kopp 3B / RHP / Tuscarora , MD / 2026

For the second consecutive update, the physical, 6-foot-1, 190 pound Tuscarora product makes a jump in the rankings after an impressive showing at the Mid-Atlantic State Games. The pro-style workout was as expected, consistently showcasing the pull side strength at the dish with loud contact produced to the left center field gap. In game, the whole field, line drive approach came to fruition and really showcased the growth in Kopp's hit tool, lacing multiple line drives to the opposite field with authority. As the body cleans up a bit and the approach becomes more and more consistent, this hit tool has the makings to become special in this highly talented class.

Sam Rosenwald LHP / 1B / Sherwood , MD / 2026

Yet another standout performance at the Mid-Atlantic State Games, the two-way Sherwood product put on a show all weekend long. The hit tool was consistent and loud, spraying line drives to the pull side with rhythm and some whip in the barrel. On the bump, it's a three pitch mix that pounds the zone and shows feel for both sides of the plate, mixing the fastball and curveball in any count for strikes. The fastball/sinker is certainly something that grabs attention, running up to 24 inches of horizontal break in the low 80's. As strength is added to the frame, Rosenwald's game looks to explode on both sides of the ball.


Lucas Sigafoose OF / 1B / St. Mary's Ryken, MD / 2026

Heading into the Fall months, our staff hadn't had the chance to get a ton of eyes on the St. Mary's Ryken product, however a standout performance at the Mid-Atlantic State Games sees the long, 6-foot-4, 170 pound outfielder make a substantial jump in this week's update. The run tool is advanced for the size, turning out a 6.88 60-yard at the event, following it up with a smooth gap-to-gap approach at the dish that produced consistent line drives to both alleys. Power will continue to tick up as strength is added and the frame fills out, and if the athleticism stays consistent, this is certainly a name that will gain attention heading into the winter months.