MN Preseason Underclass: Catching Evaluations

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By Rob Allison
Prep Baseball Report Minnesota

Prep Baseball Report's MN Preseason Underclass event took place on Saturday, March 19, 2016. The event was held at the Vadnais Sports Center in Vadnais Heights, MN. The event featured prospects from the 2018 and 2019 classes from Minnesota and South 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 Underclass. Also of note is the fact that official high school practices don't start in Minnesota until the day 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.

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Each day we breakdown each position with evaluations of players in attendance listed alphabetically.


top catching Prospects

Tony Barreca, C/OF, North Scott, 2018
5-foot-10, 165-pound right-handed hitting catcher/outfielder. 7.12 runner. Compact lean frame. Solid strength. Front heel turn trigger. Consistent solid contact. Mid/pull approach. 86 mph exit velocity. Flexible low set-up behind plate. Short exchanges, quick release, good direction to target, accurate arm with carry. 72 mph arm strength with 2.00 pop time.

Mason Nadolney, SS/C/RHP, Minnetonka, 2018
6-foot-3, 205-pound right-handed hitting utility player. 7.59 runner. Large frame with excellent strength for grad class. Physical presence at plate. Aggressive swings. Stays connected and short to contact. Gap to gap approach with above avg. pop in bat to pull side of field. Extra moving parts but shows some hitting ability. 94 mph exit velocity. Good flexibility and frame for position, athletic blocking mechanics, good strength holding pitches in zone. 75 mph arm strength with 2.19 pop time. Some raw/crude mechanics but has good tools to work with. Strong Follow in 2018 class.

Cameron Smrekar, C, Lakeville South, 2018
6-foot-3, 185-pound left-handed hitting catcher. 7.41 runner. Lean athletic build with stronger lower half. Physical presence at plate. Deeper load. Balanced swing with good weight transfer through contact. Flashes above avg. pop in bat. Gap to gap approach with ability to use opposite field. 90 mph exit velocity. Good frame and flexibility for position. Looks natural and comfortable receiving pitching. Narrow stance but is flexible. Lower arm slot, clean path, good arm strength. 74 mph with 2.32 pop time.

Mitch Stroh, C, Elk River, 2018
5-foot-10, 160-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 7.37 runner. Solid build and should continue to add quality size and strength. Rhythm in load. Clean path to contact with solid bat speed. Pulls off occasionally. Pull approach with present strength and pop in bat. 84 mph exit velocity. Athletic actions behind plate. Receives well on balls around plate. Quick feet, good direction, clean exchange, above avg. arm with carry and accuracy to bag. 2.05 pop time with 77 mph arm strength. Strong follow for 2018 class.

Michael Wallace, C/3B, Minneapolis Southwest, 2018
5-foot-9, 145-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 7.46 runner. Athletic build. Linear swing mechanics. Knee to knee trigger with flat bat plane through zone. Keeps barrel in hitting zone and stays through at contact. Gap to gap approach with ability to drive baseball to opposite field. 85 mph exit velocity. Flexible behind plate, receives with thumb underneath occasionally, light on feet, clean arm path with carry on throws. 2.28 pop time with 70 mph arm strength.

Ryan Wrobleski, C, Eden Prairie, 2018
5-foot-11, 175-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 7.6 runner. Strong build. Tall athletic stance. Deeper load. Clean bat path. Flashes above avg. strength in swing. Some lift at contact with mid/pull approach. 86 mph exit velocity. Quality low set-up behind plate. Receives low and away pitches well. Above avg. arm with clean path and carry/accuracy on throws. Extra step in footwork but makes up for it with 75 mph arm strength producing 1.99 pop time. Strong Follow in 2018 class.

catching Prospects

Kyle Chiriboga, 3B/C , Hopkins, 2018
5-foot-11, 150-pound right-handed hitting third baseman/catcher. 8.03 runner. Lean loose frame. Active load. Strides to square. Uphill swing plane with lift. Spray contact. Hard contact to middle of field. 78 mph exit velocity. Quick feet behind plate. Works hard to block and receive. Some strength in glove on balls up in zone. Loses direction on throws. Avg. arm action. 2.19 pop time with 70 mph arm strength.

Ben Cradle, C, Bloomington Kennedy, 2019
5-foot-10, 150-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 8.38 runner. Leg kick trigger. Clean bat path through zone with whippy bat speed. Has extension through contact. Gap to gap approach with ability to go other way. 78 mph exit velocity. High set-up behind plate. Some length to exchange. Throws uphill occasionally losing posture. 69 mph arm strength with 2.31 pop time.

Dawson Hensley, C/RHP, Shakopee, 2018
6-foot-2, 215-pound right-handed hitting 2-way player. 8.01 runner. Tall stance. Long stride with good balalance. Keeps hands back and loaded well. Stays in middle of field with above avg. pop in bat. 77 mph exit velocity. Receives well, works hard to block, clean exchanges, hitch in arm action effecting accuracy to bag. 2.3 pop time with 72 mph arm strength.

Ben Kinney, C, Kasson-Mantorville, 2018
6-foot-2, 175-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 8.3 runner. Knee to knee trigger with in-line stride. Clean bat path. Short finish after contact with middle/away approach. 81 mph exit velocity. Good posture receiving- stays tall and quiet with upper half. Clean exchanges. Loses direction on throws with feet. 67 mph arm strength with 2.45 pop time.

Nelson Linscott, C, Eden Prairie, 2018
5-foot-8, 178-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 7.99 runner. Strong compact frame. Creates rhythm in load. Stays in middle of field. Solid line drive and ground ball contact. 74 mph exit velocity. Feet are in-line with target, length to exchange, frames well on balls over plate. 69 mph arm strength with 2.39 pop time.

Isaac Nett, SS/C, Albany, 2019
5-foot-8, 145-pound left-handed hitting shortstop/catcher. 7.21 runner. Balanced lower half in swing. Drops hands in stride. Mid/pull approach with 76 mph exit velocity. Narrow set-up behind plate with tall stance. Clean arm path on throws. Long exchange to hand. 67 mph arm strength with 2.5 pop time.

Matthew Nunn, C, Edina, 2018
6-foot-1, 160-pound left-handed hitting catcher. 8.18 runner. Square stance with short stride. Balanced swing. Flat bat path. Spray contact to all fields. 69 mph exit velocity. Narrow stance. Blocks well. Clean transfer. Length to exchange. 63 mph arm strength with 2.41 pop time.

Jose Rodgers-Valdez, C, South St. Paul, 2018
5-foot-6, 140-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 8.28 runner. Square stance. Simple swing. Line drive swing plane. Short to contact. Gap to gap approach with ability to go the other way. 74 mph exit velocity. Flexible lower half, centers ball with body when receiving, long stride in throws, clean arm action, longer exchange and release. 71 mph arm strength with 2.31 pop time.

Ethan Roe, C, Blake, 2018
6-foot-1, 165-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 7.25 runner. Lean athletic build. Choppy rhythm in load. Good hand eye coordination with bat. Shifts weight well through contact. Shows solid pop in bat. 78 mph exit velocity. Quick feet with lateral mobility. Strong receiver. Works underneath and up through pitches. Low slot with arm quickness and good direction on throws. 2.22 pop time with 70 mph arm strength.

Robbie Smith, C, Waconia, 2018
5-foot-8, 180-pound right-handed hitting catcher. 7.18 runner. Strong frame. Athletic set-up. Deep load with short finish. Consistent solid contact with mid/pull approach. 80 mph exit velocity. Wide stance behind plate with flexible lower half. Shows strength in receiving, is quiet behind plate, and is quick to block with good mechanics. Light on feet with clean transfer to glove. Length to release producing 2.44 pop times with 64 mph arm strength.

Ean VonWald, C, Foley, 2018
6-foot-2, 180-pound left-handed hitting catcher. 7.81 runner. Double tap trigger with lift in swing. Pull approach. Solid contact on balls up in zone. 71 mph exit velocity. Balanced set-up, raw mechanics, open stride to throw. 66 mph arm strength with 2.25 pop time.



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