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High School Crosscheck: Week 1


Nathan Rode and PBR Staff

Merritt Island HS, FL, and the PBR Florida Preseason Classic was the center of the draft universe last Thursday. With RHP Carter Stewart (Eau Gallie HS, FL) and RHP/C Mason Denaburg (Merritt Island HS, FL) starting in back-to-back games the day before the college season opened, more than 100 scouts dropped in to see two of the country’s top arms. Stewart had the afternoon game and certainly didn’t disappoint, but Denaburg stole the show the nightcap and faced off against OF Elijah Cabell (TNXL Academy, FL).

A Florida recruit, Denaburg put himself in the conversation for the top half of the first round. He was amped up early, losing control of his fastball while sitting 94-96 mph. He gave up a couple hard hits in the first inning, but settled down and dominated for the rest of his outing. His fastball was 91-94 with arm-side life after the first inning and he showed advanced command of the pitch. Most importantly, he showed an improved breaking ball. It morphed between curveball and slider shape, but it was a plus offering at times with late action and tight break at 77-81. In four innings of work, Denaburg struck out 10. He is extremely athletic on the mound and showed the ability to make adjustments.

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