Prep Baseball Report

2024 Team Preview: Aledo Bearcats

Prep Baseball Texas Staff

The 2024 Texas high school baseball season is quickly approaching and, as usual, excitement is abound throughout the state. Players and coaches have been working in preparation for the upcoming season and, as is the case each year, there are some very talented players and teams across Texas.

Teams across the state have goals and aspirations to finish their seasons in Austin at the UIL State Tournament in June, but there is plenty of work to be done before that becomes reality. We hope to familiarize our readers with many of the teams across the state as we preview individual teams across Texas. We will take you right up to first pitch this season with these team previews, eventually releasing our Preseason Power 30 rankings that’ll carry us into the opening week of action.

Please keep checking back throughout the season as we will be your one-stop shop for everything related to high school baseball across the state. Each week we will be releasing our Players of the Week and updating the Power 30 rankings.

Our 2024 preseason coverage continues today.

High School: Aledo Bearcats
Head Coach: Chad Barry
UIL Classification: UIL Class 5A (District 5)
Team Strengths: Pitching & Defense
2023 Record (Playoff Finish): 23-12 (5A Area Finalists)
Key Players Lost: Trace Mazon (Weatherford College), Brooks Dwinell (Grayson), Bosten Dwinell (Grayson), Bryce McCain (Oklahoma State), Robert Burk (Ranger), Matthew Clark (Hill)



+ INF Boyd Thompson (2024; Seminole State JC) - First Team All-District
+ INF Ryan Jones (2024; Texas Tech)

*2024 Ryan Jones*

+ OF/RHP Garrett Rester (2024; Western Texas JC) - First Team All-District
+ RHP Luke Saunders (2024; Seminole State JC) - Second Team All-District

*2024 Luke Saunders*

+ RHP Riley Haug (2024; Ouachita Baptist)
+ C/INF Brennon Evans (2025; uncommitted)


+ RHP Devin Miller (2025; uncommitted)
+ OF/LHP Lucas Nawrocki (2026)

*2026 Lucas Nawrocki*

+ CIF/RHP Luke Sandefur (2026)

*2026 Luke Sandefur*

+ INF/UTL Landon Barnes (2026)


+ RHP/CIF Hudson Harbuck (2027)


Primed for another strong season heading into 2024 are Coach Chad Berry and the Aledo Bearcats. Expected to be built on their pitching and defense heading into the spring, the Bearcats appear to have a squad that can build off a 2023 season that saw them finish as 5A Area Finalists. Among the key returners, the Bearcats will bring back five seniors who are committed to playing at the next level, with three of the five earning All-District honors in 2023.

Headlining this year’s group looks to be senior INF Boyd Thompson (Seminole State JC). Thompson earned First Team All-District last spring, and is projected to play up the middle in the infield for the Bearcats in 2024. Another First Team All-District recipient from 2023 is back in senior OF/RHP Garrett Rester (Western Texas JC), who will factor as a two-way player for Aledo this spring. Also returning for the Bearcats will be senior RHP Riley Haug (Ouachita Baptist), who will be a key factor in what should be a strong Aledo pitching staff. Another senior to note for the Bearcats entering 2024 is INF Andrew Weckel (2024; uncommitted). We saw Weckel this past fall at the North Texas Senior Games where he showed strength at the dish with a max EV of 93.8 mph. 

The Bearcats’ 2024 roster will feature two seniors that can be found inside our 2024 rankings for the state of Texas in INF Ryan Jones (2024; Texas Tech) and RHP Luke Saunders (2024; Seminole State JC). Both Jones and Saunders were Texas State Games participants this past fall and should be x-factors for Aledo this season. Jones is currently ranked No. 58, and is a strong player that has put up loud numbers for our staff both in the batter’s box and on the infield dirt. A left-handed hitter, we have seen Jones put up max EV’s north of 95 mph at times with a quick bat to pair (71.8 mph avg bat speed). Defensively, he has also shown the type of arm strength that should allow him to stick on the left side of the infield at the next level, with his best bullet coming in at 90 mph across the diamond. Saunders is currently ranked No. 196 and was Second Team All-District last season. At 6-foot-2, 190-pounds with some room still left to fill out the frame, Saunders has a clean arm and a feel to spin the ball. His fastball has worked in the 87-89 mph range (T90) with 2200+ rpm on average, while his curveball has sat 72-75 mph with a max spin rate of 2200+ rpm, and rounding out his mix with a changeup that has played in the 83-84 mph range with a feel for the zone.

In the junior class, the Bearcats will bring back C/INF Brennon Evans (uncommitted), while welcoming in RHP Devin Miller (uncommitted) to the varsity squad for 2024. The Bearcats also appear to have a strong sophomore nucleus expected to make varsity impacts this spring in OF/LHP Lucas Nawrocki, CIF/RHP Luke Sandefur, and INF/UTL Landon Barnes. Nawrocki and Sandefur both find themselves ranked in our 2026 rankings with Nawrocki coming in at No. 42, and Sadefur checking in at No. 107 respectively. Nawrocki is another toolsy player that has strength in the barrel (95.3 mph max EV) from the left side with bat speed to pair (72.8 mph max), and strong left-handed arm in the outfield at 90 mph. Sandefur is an intriguing two-way prospect at an athletic 5-foot-9, 175-pounds. At the plate, Sandefur has strength from the right side, putting up EV’s in the low 90’s (T93) while posting an average batted ball distance of 222 feet at the Waco Preseason ID last month. At the same event, Sandefur worked with a mid-80’s fastball (T85.9) on the bump that worked with 14.4” of horizontal movement on average. He complemented the fastball with a high-spin curve (avg 2600+ rpm) at 72-74 mph, and rounded things out with a high-70’s changeup that played with arm-side action (avg 19.3” HM). Keep an eye on freshman RHP/CIF Hudson Harbuck as a potential instant impact player for the Bearcats this spring as well.

There is a ton of talent throughout each class for the Bearcats heading into 2024 and should give Coach Chad Barry a lot to be excited about for this year and beyond. With their returning and incoming talent, mixed in with what should be a strong pitching staff and defensive lineup for 2024, look for Aledo to be a strong 5A team again this spring.

Find more information on the 2024 Aledo Bearcats program below:
+ Follow Aledo on X: @AHSBSBLBooster
+ Prep Baseball Texas, Power 30 Homepage

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