Prep Baseball Report

Houston Preseason ID: Quick Hits

Brandon Gowins
Texas Scouting Director

TEXAS - On January 14th, we continued our 2024 Preseason with the Houston Preseason ID at Rice University. The day started off by the players running a 60, then throwing from defensive positions and taking batting practice. Following defense, Pitchers threw bullpens, where TrackMan data was recorded. Today, we take a look at some of the standouts from the day



Braxton Beaty LHP / OF / Angleton, TX / 2026

Beaty showed why he is one of the top arms in the ‘26 class on Sunday at Rice. The LSU commit showed a 4 pitch mix that all flashed above avg.  The lefty sat 88-89 on a cool day, and he did it with minimal effort. While Beaty isn’t the biggest pitcher, he still has an efficient delivery and never strains for another mph. It allows him to dot the fastball to both sides of the plate.  He throws a curve and slider, and they have distinct shapes.  While in the same velo band, the curve ball has good depth while the slider has more sweeping action.  Beaty also throws a quality change that has good sinking action.  Beaty had a super impressive freshman year for Angleton, and I expect him to top that this spring.



Bryce Krenek LHP / 1B / Katy Taylor, TX / 2026

This was my first time seeing Krenek, and it definitely won’t be my last. The talented southpaw filled up the zone with 4 pitches and throws with some attitude.  Kernek’s fastball sat in the upper 80’s topping out at 88. It had a lot of arm side run, and what was most impressive is his ability to get to the inside corner to a righty. He routinely hit that spot. He threw a quality slider that had good sweeping action. Krenek threw two versions of a changeup. He threw a traditional one that had good run and he threw it with great arm action. He also threw a split that he was able to kill the speed to below a 1,000 rpm’s and it had good tumbling action. Krenek really opened some eyes on Sunday, and I have a feeling he is about to gain a lot of momentum heading into the spring and summer. 



Walker Hurst OF / 1B / Pearland, TX / 2025

I have always been a big fan of Hurst. He is a physical athlete who moves well, and plays with some intensity. The 6’1 190 lb outfielder from Pearland had a really good day on Sunday. He ran in the 6.8’s on a chilly day, showing off his plus athleticism.  He has an accurate arm in the outfield and his throws have good carry on them. In the box, Hurst doesn’t have a lot of wasted motion in his swing, allowing him to take consistent swings with plus bat speed. He is pretty flat through the zone and his swing is geared for line drives right now. He consistently delivers mid 90’s exit velocities and that number continues to go up. Hurst is at powerhouse Pearland for his Jr. year, and I expect a big year from him.



Owen Horrell RHP / A&M Consolidated , TX / 2026

Horrell was on the ‘22 JFG team with Beaty and the talented righty is another arm that is capable of being dominant. Horrell had a good freshman year, but battled some injuries. On Sunday, he showed up  in great shape and looks ready to dominate his sophomore season. Horrell’s fastball sat in the mid 80’s topping out at 86.3. I expect that number to continue to climb this spring.  Owen also throws a sinker that is a tick or 2 slower than his 4 seam.  It can get over 20’’ of run and is a tough pitch to square up.  Horrell also throws a changeup and slider.  The change has the same movement as his sinker and really fades away from the LHH.  His slider has good horizontal break and is a tough pitch for righties to stay in on. 



Josh Hillman RHP / Trinity Classical School, TX / 2025

Sunday was my first time seeing Hillman and there was a lot to like. The 6’2 righty has a really loose and quick arm that makes me think we have some big velo jumps still coming.  His fastball topped out 85.2 on Sunday, and the pitch had good life in the zone.  He followed it up with a split/change that he was really able to kill the spin on, getting the avg. rpm’s under 1,000. The curveball had good shape, and showed depth, he just needs to continue to throw with more power.Hillman’s frame has tons of room for good weight, and if he attacks his strength training, I could see Hillman being a fast riser by end of the season. 



Michael Morris OF / 3B / St Pius X, TX / 2026

Morris was another one that made a strong first impression on Sunday. The sophomore from St. Pius X had the highest exit velocity of the event, topping out at 100.3 mph. The left handed hitter starts with his feet close together, really loads on his backside and uses plus bat speed to drive the ball. Morris worked in the outfield and infield during the defensive portion of the workouts and showed good actions and feel. He profiles as a corner outfielder or 3rd baseman. Overall, a nice day for Morris.



Logan Lorenz 1B / OF / Strake Jesuit, TX / 2025

The big, physical LHH from Strake Jesuit looks the part of a middle of the order bat.  He has good rhythm in the box, and showed a pretty short and direct path to the ball. He has some loft in his swing, and with his strength and plus bat speed, Lorenz projects to have some big pull side power. His best exit velo was 98.3 mph and his top bat speed wat 85.7 mph. Lorenz looked solid around the bag at first as well during the defensive workouts.



Matthew Scott C / 3B / Paetow, TX / 2025

Scott is another one who made big jumps this offseason. The Jr. catcher showed up more physical and it translated to his numbers. His max exit velocity was 98.2 mph and his top distance was 380 ft. Scott has good rhythm in the box and above avg. bat speed. He has consistently hit when I have seen him in game, so it translates.  He is a leader behind the plate and is always trying to help his pitcher. He is a good receiver and looks to be moving better behind the plate. I’m excited to see Scott this spring. 



Aiden Sanchez OF / LHP / J. Frank Dobie, TX / 2025

One of the more exciting athletes I have seen this pre season was Sanchez.  The 6’3 205 lb. Junior offers plenty of intrigue.  He is a left handed pitcher that is also a switch hitter.  On the mound, Sanchez is raw but there is a lot of upside. With a quick change, Sanchez’s fastball went up 3 mph and topped out at 84.2 mph. He has feel for his secondaries as well, he just needs more mound time and to continue to learn to be aggressive on the mound. At the plate, the 6.9 runner offers some power at the plate. He has a good swing from both sides, but he really showed some juice from the right. The swing was a little more compact and he consistently barreled the baseball. Sanchez has a lot of tools, and is just scratching the surface of what he can become. 



Easton Cantrell C / OF / Santa Fe, TX / 2027

One of the stars of the day was the freshman, and he showed out in multiple areas. He is a good athlete who has some present strength. He ran a 7.01 60 and moved extremely well  behind the plate.  He had a good bp session that saw him top out at 93.2 mph. He showed good bat speed, and he projects to have some power as he continues to mature.  He has an average arm, but behind the plate it really plays up because his feet are so good. He managed a 2.01 pop time with great footwork and a quick release.  He still has some rawness in the receiving and blocking, but the want to was evident behind the plate. Cantrell had a great first showing, and I am excited to follow up on him this spring/summer. 



Grant Shepherd LHP / OF / Pearland , TX / 2026

Shepherd was another 2 way talent that impressed me on Sunday. The LHP/OF from Pearland showed well in all phases.  He showed off his arm when throwing from the OF, as he topped out at 88 mph with great carry on his throws. In the box, he showed off plus blast motion numbers with a very impressive max rotational acceleration of 27.12 G’s.  He showed the ability to drive the ball with authority to the pull side.  Where I really was impressed was on the mound. The southpaw topped out at 84.2 mph with a clean and low effort delivery. The velo should continue to climb as he gets more physical. The changeup has a chance to be a weapon for him. He really kills the spin on it and throws it with good hand speed. Overall, a very impressive day for Shepherd.




Houston Rising Stars ID TX 03/10 The John Cooper School
DFW Rising Stars ID TX 03/30 Lake Dallas High School
San Antonio Rising Stars ID TX 04/07 Cornerstone Christian HS
2024 TX Rising Stars Games (Invite-Only) TX 05/18 Prestonwood Christian Academy