Prep Baseball Report

Blast from the Past: Max Anderson, 2020

By Joe Tourville
Partner, Blast Motion

In 2020, Blast Motion attended its first Super 60 Pro Showcase. Afterwards, Prep Baseball Report asked me to identify six players and Shooter Hunt invited me onto Coffee & Curveballs to talk about what we saw and what we took away.

After the 2020 Super 60, when we got back to our offices in San Diego, myself, Kyle Attl, Blast’s director of Pro team services, and Jacob Howenstein, Blast's biomechanist, each put together our own lists and compared them. There was one player who showed up on each of our lists, and it was the future Cornhusker, Max Anderson.

Here's what we saw from Anderson back in 2020:

First, Anderson averaged a Rotational Acceleration of 24g and a peak of 28.3g. This showed us that Anderson had the ability to rotate into his peak bat speed quickly, equipping him to make later decisions at the plate. He had power efficiency.

Secondly, Anderson also averaged around 80 percent in On-Plane Efficiency and he didn’t have one swing fall below 70 percent. This showed us that Anderson had the ability to consistently meet the plane of the incoming pitch location, thus giving him a higher percentage of making contact.

The third thing we liked about Anderson was perhaps the most impressive quality – his swing consistency – specifically, the repeatability of the movements in his load and contact positions. Anderson's average Early Connection was 92 degrees, and his average Connection at Impact was 89 degrees. For reference, it is incredibly difficult to find hitters who can average that close to 90 degrees for both Early Connection and Connection at Impact. This played a significant factor in all three of us selecting Anderson over other players who perhaps had much better traditional power profiles.

Now, did Anderson perform like a top-six hitter at the Super 60 that year? 

No, he didn't.

I’m not sure he was even a top-10 hitter at the showcase. However, we didn’t choose Anderson because of how good he was at that moment, we chose Anderson because he had one of the highest ceilings to work with of anyone at the 2022 Super 60 that year, offensively.

But all high-ceiling players require improvements, and the one part of Anderson's swing that needed development was his bat speed, it just wasn’t there yet. But it was really, really close. However, we all felt his bat speed would improve as he got older and stronger, specifically on a collegiate campus. That’s also just something we’ve seen in players at Blast.

Anderson can accelerate into his peak bat speed much quicker than a lot of hitters, but he just needed a higher peak bat speed (raw strength) to accelerate into. Combine that with his ability to repeat strong positions in his load and contact points while staying on plane with each incoming pitch – you have a hitter with the Power Profile, Contact Profile, and Swing-Consistency Profile that can contribute to a professional baseball organization. 

So, what has Max Anderson done since his performance at the 2020 Super 60?

+ Nebraska (2021), freshman season

  • Big Ten Freshman of the Year

  • Second Team, All-Big Ten

  • Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American

  • Second Team All-American

  • Big Ten All-Freshman Team

  • .332 BA

  • .386 OBP

  • .500 SLG

  • 61 hits

  • 8 doubles

  • 7 home runs

  • 32 RBI

  • 19 multi-hit games

  • 7 multi-RBI games 

+ Nebraska (2022), sophomore season

  • 12 doubles

  • 10 home runs

  • 45 RBI

  • .299 BA

  • .513 SLG

  • .387 OBP

  • 7 three-hit games

  • 4 games with 4 RBIs 

Anderson has also had two incredibly strong summers in the prestigious Cape Cod Summer Collegiate League, where he was named to the All-Star team in both seasons. In 2021, he hit .282 with four home runs – and an injury prevented him from playing in the league until June 29. In 2022's summer campaign, he hit .312 with seven doubles and two home runs.

I think it’s safe to say that Anderson has found the increase in Bat Speed we were hoping for, and at the right time too, as he's entering his draft-eligible junior season at Nebraska in 2023. Max is draft eligible this year at Nebraska, already off to a hot start. Four games into the season, and Anderson is 6-for-17 with a double, a homer, and five RBIs. 


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