MN Preseason All-State: LHP Evaluations

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By Rob Allison
Prep Baseball Report Minnesota

Prep Baseball Report's MN Preseason All-State event took place on Sunday, March 20, 2016. The event was held at the Vadnais Sports Center in Vadnais Heights, MN. The event featured prospects from the 2017 class from Minnesota and North Dakota who showcased their talents in front of our scouting staff. Thank you to the players, parents, my staff and the Vadnais Sports Center for such a great event.

There were a number of great individual performances this year at the MN Preseason All-State. Also of note is the fact that official high school practices don't start in Minnesota until the Monday after the event. Look for many of these player's numbers to continue to improve as they start playing and working into mid-season form.

As we drill down into the statistics:

+ 21 players ran sub-7.2 60's.
+ 33 players recorded 85+ mph exit velocities
+ 18 players recorded 80+ mph infield throws
+ 13 players recorded 80+ mph outfield throws
+ 15 catchers recorded 70+ mph throws to second base
+ 8 catchers recorded sub-2.1 pop times
+ 40 pitchers were 80+ mph on the mound

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We highlight the left-handed pitchers with the top prospects along with evals for all players at event.


top LHP Prospects

Matt Arens, LHP, Apple Valley, 2017
6-foot-4, 200-pound left-handed pitcher. #15 ranked player in MN 2017 class. Highly projectable build. Up tempo, solid athleticism, many moving parts creating deception, hides baseball. Shows above avg. life on fastball, thrown for strikes, at 82-85 mph; touching 87 mph. Curveball has above avg. shape with sharp break; will be a swing and miss pitch in college. Changeup is firm and heavy currently; and thrown in and around. Did not pitch as a sophomore- high potential lefty with development and instruction.

Travis Brown, LHP, St. Michael-Albertville, 2017
5-foot-9, 160-pound left-handed pitcher. Small loose frame, above avg. pitchability, tuck and turn delivery, short arm action, hides baseball. Fastball has life with sinking action in bottom of zone at 79-82 mph. Good shape with tight spin on 1/7 breaking ball; depth is solid. Varying cut and run on changeup with fade at the plate. Strong follow in MN 2017 class; LHP with 3 pitches, pitchability, and competes well on mound.

Jimmy Connell, LHP/1B, Edina, 2017
6-foot-4, 215-pound left-handed hitting 2-way player. 7.57 runner. Large projectable frame. Sound mechanically with good rhythm and sequence. Short on back-side with stab down, arm is free and loose out front from ¾ slot. Throws fastball for strikes with quality arm-side sink at 78-80 mph; touching 83 mph. Developing feel for secondary with avg. action and feel for changeup; curveball flashes sharp break with 12/6 shape. Strong follow in 2017 class and and will make significant jump into the MN rankings. Tall athletic set-up. Good weight transfer, short finish through contact, inconsistent contact, mid/pull approach, 80 mph exit velocity. Good footwork, easy actions, soft glove, short release on throws, moves around bag well, 69 mph arm strength.

Bubba Horton, LHP, Maple Grove, 2017
6-foot-3, 185-pound left-handed pitcher. #3 ranked player in MN 2017 class; #249 overall. Verbal commit to U. of Minnesota. Tall projectable build. Primarily fastball/changeup combo. Simple delivery, sound rhythm, slight should tilt, up and over delivery, long arm action with good arm speed out front. Fastball was 84-86 mph; touching 87 mph with life in zone. Above avg. arm speed, feel, and action on changeup at 66-68 mph; consistently spotting up to arm-side of plate.

Leo Lerner, LHP, Cretin-Derham Hall, 2017
6-foot, 180-pound left-handed pitcher. Solid frame- stronger lower half. Good body control in delivery, lands slightly across body, with solid extension to plate. Short arm action, hides baseball from hitter, and comes out clean in front. Fastball was solid life with run and sink to arm-side of plate; 77-80 mph. Curveball has improved with better 1/7 shape and increased depth of break for strikes. Avg./ok feel for changeup with ability to show in zone and take away from hitter. Solid follow in 2017 class and will enter rankings.

Ryan Och, LHP, Chanhassen, 2017
6-foot-2, 175-pound left-handed pitcher. #47 ranked player in MN 2017 class. Lean athletic frame. Simple mechanics, low effort, hides baseball, ball jumps out of hand. Fastball shows life with varying cut and sink at 82-84 mph; touching 87 mph. Has developed consistent slot with breaking ball; 1/7 shape with tight rotation, short sharp break, and lands in zone consistently. Solid feel for changeup; keeps down and way to arm-side. Has made big strides in overall pitching since summer/fall. Strong follow in 2017 class; solid riser in rankings.

Connor Young, LHP, Eden Prairie, 2017
6-foot-3, 205-pound left-handed pitcher. Durable frame with stronger lower half. Deep arm path, slight cross-fire delivery, low ¾ slot. Shows life on fastball, solid deception, at 80-83 mph. Solid feel and command of changeup with fade. Inconsistent release point on breaking ball; better suited for slider/cutter with arm action and slot. Solid follow in 2017 class.

Nick Zwack, LHP, Monticello, 2017
6-foot-3, 195-pound left-handed pitcher. #33 ranked player in MN 2017 class. Solid frame. Simple balance point, controlled front leg, clean 2-piece arm action, OT slot. Leverages fastball downhill with good command to arm-side of plate at 82-84 mph. Varying shape on curveball with tight rotation and feel for zone. Above avg. command of changeup with fade at 67-69 mph. Solid follow in MN 2017 class.


Lhp Prospects

Nick Fischer, LHP, Valley Lutheran, 2017
6-foot-6, 230-pound left-handed pitcher. Pitches mechanically. Stiff actions. Short arm action. Ball comes out of hand clean. Fastball has arm-side run at 78-80 mph. 12/6 breaking ball with loose spin. Straight changeup at 72-73 mph. Big body, has some things you can’t teach, will benefit from instruction. Could be good project guy for college progam.

Mitchell Gabrelcik, LHP/OF, Buffalo, 2017
6-foot-3, 180-pound left-handed hitting 2-way player. Solid balance point, lands across body occasionally, when in-line has good extension to plate. Shows solid life on fastball, for strikes, at 77-79 mph. Inconsistent breaking ball with short break at 71-73 mph. Hand is underneath changeup at release creating avg. action and fade. 7.06 runner. Square stance, body load, short through zone, gap to gap approach, uses hands in swing. 78 mph exit velocity. Decent athlete, raw mechanics, stiff arm action from low ¾ slot, elevated throws to target. 74 mph arm strength.

Nick Kindschuh, LHP, Chanhassen, 2017
6-foot-1, 190-pound left-handed pitcher. Up tempo delivery, high leg kick, slight tuck and turn, hides baseball, direction to plate, short on back-side, clean out front, ¾ slot, command of fastball to arm-side of plate. Fastball was 72-74 mph; touching 75 mph. Flashes solid shape and depth on 1/7 breaking ball. Showed arm-side fade to changeup; feel improved the more he threw it.

Zach Olson, LHP, Elk River, 2017
5-foot-10, 200-pound left-handed pitcher. Solid balance point, direction to plate, falls down mound on release. Long arm action from OT slot. Shows command of fastball to arm-side of plate with running action at 70-72 mph; touching 74 mph. Varying command of curveball which shows solid shape and depth. Changeup has fade; tends to slow arm action.

Connor Peterson, LHP/OF, Farmington, 2017
5-foot-9, 150-pound left-handed hitting 2-way player. Sound mechanically on mound. Lands slightly across body in delivery. Fastball was 67-69 mph. Breaking ball was 55-58 mph. Changeup was 61-62 mph. 7.81 runner. Open stance, loses posture at contact, negative weight through swing, mid/away approach. 71 mph exit velocity. Solid fielder, long release, solid accuracy, 68 mph arm strength.

Torben Urdahl, LHP, Eden Prairie, 2017
6-foot-2, 185-pound left-handed pitcher. Strong durable frame. Up tempo delivery, moving parts create deception, high front side, stab in arm action, comes out clean in front. Fastball was 78-80 mph, late sink, and solid life. Varying shape on curveball with sharp break and depth. Solid fade on changeup to arm-side of plate. Follow in 2017 class.


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