Prep Baseball Report

2024 6A Area Round Preview

Brandon Gowins
Texas Scouting Director

TEXAS - With one round in the books, I wanted to take a look at some interesting matchups for this coming week in 6A and highlight whatever else caught my eye. There are some big time matchups this week with teams both expecting to advance. Let’s take a look at some matchups and other notes that caught my eye heading into this week.

Frenship Vs. Keller

This is a matchup that you would normally expect to see in a later round, but with Keller finishing 4th this year, this big matchup happens this weekend. Both teams have a stable of senior arms. Frenship has the ‘22 Future Gamer Brooks Roberson (Louisiana Tech) leading their staff. 2 Odessa recruits fill out their playoff rotation, with Nano Mendoza and Bryce LeBlanc both picking up a win in their 1st round matchup. Blinn Recruit, Landon Hutcheson, will come out of the pen as well as Jr. lefty Braxton Neel.  Hutcheson and Jr. infielder Holden Phillips get the tone started offensively out of the 1, 2 spot. 

*Brooks Roberson

Keller has pitching depth in spades. They have Senior’s Mason Cook (McLennan), Christopher Langley (Tyler JC), LHP Matthew Taylor (UTA), and Levi Shaffer (Southeastern Louisiana). Soph. SS/RHP Cole Koeninger can also come in out of the pen and run it up there. The question with the Indians is are they going to hit. Fisher Polydoroff (Weatherford) has the ability to carry an offense, and they have a lot of talent. Sr. Brady Reeves has some juice, and Jr.’s Bach Hartwig and Jake Scheiden have both shown flashes.  Koeninger and fellow sophomore Brock Burkett both have big time upside, and if they step up, Keller could make another deep run.

*Jake Scheiden

Mansfield Vs. Rockwall

This one has a chance to be a really good series.  Mansfield has been good all year, and has some fire power at the top of the order in Braxton Van Cleave (Kentucky), David Hogg (LSU) and Aidan Simmons. They also have a really good pitching rotation in Sr. RHP Trevor Berquist (NOC-Tonkawa), Jr. RHP Cade Julius and Soph. Lefty Travis Sample, who was big time last week. 

*Braxton Van Cleave

Rockwall is used to going deep in the playoffs, and Coach Rose has his team playing their best ball of the year. They have Sr. Keller Lindeman (Midland JC) leading their staff and Jr. LHP Landyn Locke has been really good down the stretch as well.  They are rock solid up the middle with Sr. C Jake Overstreet (Weatherford JC) and Sr. SS Pearson Riebock (OU) at short. Riebock sets the tone out of the leadoff spot, add Jr. Charles Mahaffey, Locke, Overstreet and Soph. 3B Dylan Cheek, and you have a potent, athletic lineup. 

*Pearson Riebock

Tomball Vs. Grand Oaks

This one has premium arms on both sides, and the question will be can Grand Oaks hang with Tomball offensively? Grand Oaks has Sr. Marc Barnhard (A&M), Jr. LHP Mason Kinchen (TTU), Sr. LHP Austin Dolezal (Texas State), Collin Toedter (HCU), and Houston Tomlinson (A&M) is back throwing as well. Offensively, they are led by Parker Blackman (Sam Houston State) and soph. SS Sebastian Segura.

*Marc Barnhard

Tomball comes in as our #2 team in the state and they are firing on both sides of the ball. Offensively, it starts with LSU recruit Cade Arrambide. He is in double digits with home runs and is a scary leadoff hitter. Their offense is littered with D1 players up and down the lineup.  They are great up the middle with Coleman Ryan and Blaine Lucas at short and 2nd, Arrambide behind the dish, and Braeden Scherzer (SHSU) in CF.  Tomball has a plethora of arms as well, led by sophomores CJ Sampson and Karson Reeder

*Cade Arrambide

New Braunfels vs. Dripping Springs

New Braunfels has had a great year with a record of 27-6-1. They have 2 reliable Sr. arms on the mound in Luke Harrington (Angelina JC) and Lucke Holt (Cisco). They are really good behind the dish with Jr. C Clayton Namken (A&M) back there and good in CF with Sr. Ryder Rutledge (Baylor).  The offense has depth and can put up some crooked numbers.

I have been a fan of Dripping Springs potential all spring, and they continue to get better. Cooper Rummel (Texas) continues to get more consistent on the mound with his low 90’s fastball. Sr. Jaxon Conover (Wharton Co.) was lights out last week in a win or go home game.  The X factor is Taylor Tracey (Tennessee), who has started throwing more and more as the season goes on and can be dominant when he is on. Tracey also is the catalyst for the offense, and he has some help with the likes of Jr’s Connor Helms (Texas State), Gavin Hoel, Traigh Perry, and Tristan Ciechanowicz. The winner of this series, has a chance to make a deep run.

*Cooper Rummel

JJ Pearce Pitching Staff

JJ Pearce has been a fixture in the playoffs the last couple of years, but this year has a little different feel. They have a 3 headed monster on the mound right now that is going to make it tough for any offense to put up numbers.  AJ Ripley (McLennan) has had a monster senior season. He has thrown multiple no hitters and has some of the best fastball command in north Texas, and it has ticked up into the low 90’s at times. Carson Bailey (Baylor) is fully healthy and the arm talent is undeniable. He has been in the zone down the stretch, and can be tough to square up with his low 90’s fastball. Navarro Recruit, Deegan Kubat has been lights out as well down the stretch. He is big and physical and comes right at you with a mid 90’s fastball. If Bailey and Kubat keep filling up the zone, the Mustangs are a team nobody wants to hit off.

*AJ Ripley

*Carson Bailey

*Degan Kubat