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2012 Spring Top Prospect Showcase






2012 Top Prospects

Zach Coppola - OF - 2012 - Windsor Heights, IA
Zach Coppola (2012, OF, Dowling Catholic HS, Windsor Heights, IA): Coppola didn’t play in Saturday or Sunday’s games but did enough during the workout to warrant this spot. His 6.68 sixty and 91 mph velo from the outfield were both event bests.

Kevin Elder - RHP - 2012 - Burlington, IL
Kevin Elder (2012, RHP, Burlington Central HS, Burlington, IL): Elder’s feel for pitching and command will allow him to have success at the next level. He sat 88-90 and threw two different curveballs, the better one at 78-79 with sharpness and depth.

Ryan Erickson - LHP - 2012 - Mason City, IA
Ryan Erickson (2012, LHP, Mason City, IA HS): Lean and loose with good feel for pitching, Erickson is a projectable arm who figures to keep on improving. His fastball was up to 85 and he showed the ability to cut it at 80 in addition to a 73-75 slider with depth and shape that he commands well and a 69-71 mph change with sink.

Will Gormally - OF - 2012 - Fort Dodge, IA
Will Gormally (2012, OF, Fort Dodge Senior HS, Fort Dodge, IA): Gormally is a nice mix of tools, projectability and performance. He ran a 6.90 sixty, tied Copolla with 91 mph velo from the outfield, took a very solid BP showing a quick bat and was aggressive during games, routinely squaring balls up.

Calvin Mathews - RHP - 2012 - Bloomfield, IA
Calvin Matthews (2012, RHP, Davis County HS, Bloomfield, IA): Mathews has been a consistent performer over the last two years during PG Leagues and Showcases. He sat 88-90 Sunday, pounding the lower half of the strike zone, also throwing a 76-78 mph curveball with horizontal break.

JD Nielsen - LHP - 2012 - Winterset, IA
JD Nielsen (2012, LHP, Martensdale-St. Marys HS, Winterset, IA): Tall and very long, Nielsen has developed nicely as an athlete and pitcher since his first PG event two years ago. He threw at 84 and still projects for more with clean mechanics and arm speed. He mixed pitches up with a two-seamer, changeup, and curveball all showing as solid pitches.

Carlos Pena - RHP - 2012 - Columbus, OH
Carlos Pena (2012, RHP, West HS, Columbus, OH): Pena passes the eye test with his strong, mature build and lots of strength. He topped at 88 and his fastball is heavy with sink, he repeats well and was able to throw consistent strikes. Both his changeup and curveball showed good potential and he was able to mix pitches and keep hitters off balance.

Tyler Peyton - RHP - 2012 - Grimes, IA
Tyler Peyton (2012, RHP, Dallas Center-Grimes HS, Grimes, IA): Peyton has increased his arm strength since last fall when he topped at 86 during the WWBA Kernels Foundation Tournament He topped at 90 with good chance for more as his arm is quick and loose.

Alec Rash - RHP - 2012 - Adel, IA
Alec Rash (2012, RHP, ADM HS, Adel, IA): Rash was 91-93, touching 94 Sunday in front of a large scouting contingent. He has a fast arm and showed consistent run and sink in the zone. Rash flashed a quality changeup and solid slider and his continued progress of command and off-speed pitches will determine how high he is drafted in June.


2013 Top Prospects

Austin Battaglia - RHP - 2013 - Waukee, IA
Austin Battaglia (2013, IF/RHP, Waukee, IA HS): Battaglia is a very solid all-around player with tools to play multiple infield positions. He also showed very good feel for pitching, rolling thru a quick inning and topping at 79. He stood out most with the bat with his quiet approach and quick swing with extension.

Nick Belzer - RHP - 2013 - Ankeny, IA
Nick Belzer (2013, RHP/MIF, Ankeny, IA HS): Lean and projectable, Belzer showed a quick and loose arm, working up to 86 with his fastball. His consistent mechanics allowed him to throws strikes with his fastball, a 70-72 mph curveball, and 72-73 mph changeup.

Bo Bower - OF - 2013 - Iowa City, IA
Bo Bower (2013, OF/RHP, West Branch HS, Iowa City, IA): A strong, well proportioned athlete, Bower ran a 6.87, showed solid skills in the outfield and has an aggressive, line drive swing at the plate showing strength and projecting for power.

Cody Brandt - LHP - 2013 - West Branch, IA
Cody Brandt (2013, LHP, West Branch, IA HS): Big and strong at 6’6, 230, Brandt shows a lot of potential on the mound. He topped at 85 with a smooth easy delivery and more velocity to come. He throws on a downhill plane and his 76 mph change had sink.

Derek Burkamper - RHP - 2013 - Muscatine, IA
Derek Burkamper (2013, RHP, Muscatine, IA HS): Athletic and projectable with a feel for three pitches, Burkamper has a bright future. He topped at 87 with loose, whippy arm action. His delivery is easy and he has good present velo on his off speed pitches, both which point to more velocity in the future.

Tyler Butz - 3B - 2013 - Walford, IA
Tyler Butz (2013, 3B/OF, Prairie HS, Cedar Rapids, IA): A solid athlete who has very good feel for 3B with soft hands and carry on his throws. Butz has pop in his bat and a smooth swing that projects to gain bat speed and more power as he fills out.

Anthony Denkinger - SS - 2013 - Windsor Heights, IA
Anthony Denkinger (2013, SS/OF/RHP, Dowling Catholic HS, Windsor Heights, IA): Denkinger earned his billing as the top position player of the showcase, showing smooth easy athleticism and defensive skills that will profile at SS or in the OF. The ball comes off his bat very well and he hit two home runs during batting practice.

Brennan Hammer - OF - 2013 - Cedar Rapids, IA
Brennan Hammer (2013, OF/1B/LHP, Prairie HS, Cedar Rapids, IA): A smooth, left handed stroke with good bat speed and some loft makes Hammer a very intriguing prospect with the bat. He is athletic, showing good defensive tools in the OF and at 1B and projects for a velo spike as he gains strength in his body.

Matthew Johnson - 3B - 2013 - Ankeny, IA
Matthew Johnson (2013, 3B/RHP, Ankeny, IA HS): An interesting two-way player, Johnson is a left-handed hitting 3B with clean hands and solid arm strength. He has an easy line drive swing, strong hands and projects to make a lot of contact as well. He stood out even more on the mound with loose easy arm action and 86 mph velocity with feel for a curve and change

Joel Lanning - OF - 2013 - Ankeny, IA
Joel Lanning (2013, C/OF, Ankeny, IA HS): Another member of Ankeny’s impressive HS roster, Lanning is a strong and versatile athlete with lots of potential. A highly sought QB recruit as well, Lanning threw 87 from the outfield and an event best 79 mph catcher velo. He ran a 7.09 sixty and showed strength in his swing and bat speed.

Benjamin Miller - LHP - 2013 - Clive, IA
Ben Miller (2013, LHP, Valley HS, Clive, IA): Miller is left-handed and topped at 89 mph. Those two attributes alone put him in any top prospect discussion. He also showed pitchability and a changeup with late life and sink.

Mitchell Moser - MIF - 2013 - Atkins, IA
Mitch Moser (2013, MIF/RHP/OF, Benton Community HS, Atkins, IA): Lean and long armed, Moser is a versatile prospect with good fielding actions on the infield, bat speed and bat control at the plate. His speed could also project well as an OF and he threw a solid inning on the mound, showing command and three pitches.

Austin Stroschein - RHP - 2013 - Marion, IA
Austin Stroschein (2013, RHP, Linn-Mar, Marion, IA): Another long, projectable pitcher Stroschein was up to 87 a four mph jump from last fall. Another velocity jump could be in store this summer as he fills out and adds strength. His arm works well and he is balanced in his delivery and also throws a 70-72 mph curveball.

Dom Thompson-Williams - OF - 2013 - Sioux City, IA
Dom Thompson-Williams (2013, OF, Sioux City East, Sioux City, IA): Athletic with very good present tools, Williams ran a 7.09 sixty and threw 87 from the outfield. He hit well in games and is a very solid defensive center fielder. Williams is short to the ball at the plate with the ability to pull pitches on the inner half and slap balls the other way and use his wheels.


2014 Top Prospects

Nick Biancalana - RHP - 2014 - Des Moines, IA
Nick Biancalana (2014, RHP/1B/3B, Roosevelt HS, Des Moines, IA): Not quite as big and strong as McKinney, Biancalana is 6’2, 215 and sat 84-87 with his fastball. He projects to throw in the 90s very soon as his power arm action and downhill plane are good signs, as is a slider at 77-78.

Mitch Keller - RHP - 2014 - Cedar Rapids, IA
Mitch Keller (2014, RHP, Xavier HS, Cedar Rapids, IA): The younger brother of PG veteran and current Nebraska RHP Jon Keller, Mitch is a very projectable arm with very easy arm action and present velo up to 86. It is easy to dream on Keller throwing 90 in a year as his body has lots of room to fill out and add strength. He also showed developing feel for both a changeup and curveball.

Ryan Lillard - SS - 2014 - Urbandale, IA
Ryan Lilard (2014, MIF/3B, Urbandale, IA HS): Another projectable 2014 grad, Lilard is long and lean but his levers work well at present. He ran a 7.03 sixty and threw 85 across the infield each of which has a good chance of improving as he fills out. He is short to the ball at the plate at has very good hand eye coordination, leading to all fields contact.

Keaton McKinney - RHP - 2014 - Ankeny, IA
Keaton McKinney (2014, 1B/RHP, Ankeny, IA HS): The recent Arkansas commit is a big, strong player who has been up to 88 mph off the mound in the past. He just swung the bat this weekend and showed glimpses of his huge power potential.

Kolton Smith - OF - 2014 - Toledo, IA
Kolton Smith (2014, MIF, South Tama HS, Toledo, IA): Lean and athletic with quick hands and feet, Smith profiles as a second baseman who hits leadoff, gets on base and steals a lot of bases. He currently goes the other way almost exclusively but showed the bat speed to pull pitches as well.

J.T. Sole - C - 2014 - Cedar Falls, IA
J.T. Sole (2014, C, Cedar Falls, IA HS): Sole continues to develop and play above his tools. He is a very good receiver and has increased his throwing velo and lowered his pop time significantly over the last year. He has also developed with the bat, showing strength and driving the ball with a short, compact swing.

Jake Westphal - RHP - 2014 - Sioux City, IA
Jake Westphal (2014, MIF, Sioux City East, Sioux City, IA): Simply put, Westphal is a ballplayer. A little undersized Westphal doesn’t have a tool that seperates himself but makes every play look easy at SS, squares up every kind of pitching and is always in the right place. Look for Westphal to continue to stand out at the top of the order and in the middle infield.