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January 1, 2014

Pre-season 2014 Baseball look

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When you play summer baseball in Kansas, everyone is a pitcher no matter what position you play, which might explain why this year's team is led by some top quality athletes on the mound.

Even with all the quality seniors on the mound, some of our best athletes in that position may be coming out of the junior class and while there are at least nine pitchers committed this year to Division I programs, Wichita State and Kansas have each picked up two high profile in-state catchers.

Folks have been saying all along it's going to be a good year for baseball and why not. Look at the year football and volleyball have had so far. It is just plain a good athletic class for Kansas this year.

Prep Baseball Report in Kansas currently covers and ranks players in the state, and their rankings have the four catchers ranked among the top eight players in the Class of 2014. Check them out on a regular basis both at their Kansas web site as well as their twitter account.

Pre-season All State Team


Brett Anderson, Olathe East, ARKANSAS STATE is a 5-11 right handed middle infielder who can also play in the outfield. Anderson is a two year starter for East and plays summer ball for Building Champions out of the KC area. He hits second or third in the lineup, usually in the two hole and for his summer team, hit over 400 in 122 appearances last season.

Isaiah, Campbell, Olathe South, ARKANSAS 2015 is a six-foot four 220 pounder who has made an early commitment to the University of Arkansas. Has been selected to play in several all star games and was invited to tryout for the KC Area Scout team as well as the Texas Rangers top 50 Midwest Prospect Showcase. Second team Sunflower League as a sophomore.

Clayton Custer, BVNW not only can hoop it, but he is also ranked as the no. 4 baseball player in Kansas by Prep Baseball Report as a shortstop.

Ryan Cyr, Blue Valley, is a 6-foot-2 junior right handed pitcher was selected to the EKL first team as a sophomore pitcher and is one of the promising up and comers in the state. Selected as one of the top pitchers in the recent Barnstormers Showcase held at Missouri Western this past month.

Zach Engelken, Blue Valley West, NEBRASKA at 6-foot-four and a right hander, has a fastball in the 87-91 mph range with his commitment to the Husker program. Engelken was named the KBCA pitcher of the year for Class 6A as a junior.

Bret Fehr, Manhattan WICHITA STATE is a 6-foot-2 outfielder who hit 385 for Manhattan High School as a junior. Fehr was named to the second team coaches All State team as well as being a first team All-Centennial League selection. Fehr is also a returning Hovpen.rivals.com player.

Tanner Gragg, Blue Valley West, KANSAS is a 6-foot, 195 pound right hander is a three year letter winner so far under coach Bill McDonald. He is listed by Perfect Game as the No. 1 catcher in Kansas and the No. 2 player overall as well as being named to their Pre-season All-American team.

Garrett Hutson, Augusta junior was named to the second team All-State team as a sophomore from Circle and has since transferred to Augusta for his junior season. Hutson committed to Wichita State as a sophomore, but has since decommitted with the change of coaching staff there and has reopened his recruiting.

Tyler Jones, Andale, WICHITA STATE stands at 6-foot-3 and his junior season finished with a 1.02 earned run average and first team All-State honors on the KBCA team for Class 4A. His summer with the Wichita Sluggers resulted in a 0.73 earned run average.

Brandon Lee, Blue Valley, WEST POINT ACADEMY an outfielder who has made a commitment to baseball and country at the next level

TJ Martin, Blue Valley Southwest, KANSAS stands at 6-foot and weighs around 200 pounds and is the No. 2 ranked catcher and No. 6 player overall as ranked by Perfect Game. As a junior, Martin hit .451 for Coach Rick Sabbath and is a two time coaches All-State honored player.

Lucas Milner, Andover Central, was a returning Closer off last year's Hovpen team and has signed with two time Junior College World Series qualifier Neosho County for his freshman year of college.

Bryce Montes De Oca, Lawrence, MISSOURI ranked as the No. 1 recruit in Kansas Ranked No. 59 overall high school prospect in the country 2013 Underclass 1st Team All-American - Perfect Game All-American Classic game participant. Due to an elbow injury, did not pitch last spring. Fastball listed at 95 mph and at 6-foot-8 and 265 pounds, could pick up speed as it travels downhill toward hitters.

Ryan Ralston, BV West KANSAS ranked as the No. 2 right handed pitcher and No. 3 overall player in Kansas by Perfect Game as well as being the starting quarterback on West's semi finalist in football in Class 5A this past season. He was also named to the Coaches All-State team as a junior. So far, he has earned 10 letters in three sports at West including three in baseball.

Taylor Sanagorski, Bishop Carroll WICHITA STATE is a six footer who hit 389 for Bishop Carroll last season. A three year letter winner, Sanagorski has been behind the plate in three state tournament seasons so far for his high school team, winning one and finishing second in another.

Adam Thies, Olathe East, WICHITA STATE is listed as a six foot right handed pitcher but was also recruited as a shortstop as he hit 11 doubles and six home runs for his high school team as a junior. He pitched 20 innings with a couple saves.

Gunner Troutwine, Shawnee Mission East, WICHITA STATE is a six-foot-2 three year letter winner for his high school team and was a two year first team selection in the Sunflower League.

Alex VanPelt, St. Thomas Aquinas, WICHITA STATE is a six foot four left hander who also plays first base for his high school and was a two year letter winner for the Saints. He also earned three bowling letters and played basketball for his high school.

Keylan KIllgore, Wichita Heights, WICHITA STATE commitment as a junior from Heights is a 6-foot-3, 160 pound left handed pitcher is another from the Class of 2015 who has a year to pick up velocity on his fastball but control is where it is at presently.

Nick Wilson, OF, DH, Mill Valley, 2013 All State Selection who was named the Offensive player of the year by his high school team as a junior and was selected to the KVL first team as a designated hitter and held that spot on the Coaches All State team as well.

Players to watch:

We might add here that the recruiting of baseball players is entirely different than any other sport as the junior college route doesn't necessarily mean that they weren't good enough to sign Division I out of high school. Many times, with the professional signing regulations from Major League Baseball, it is advantageous to play a year of junior college ball then go to the professional team system as opposed to having to stick it out with a Division I club for three years before they can sign.

There are some very good players listed with our player to watch who have signed with some top junior college programs and should be watched with that in mind this spring.


Name, HS, Grade if not senior, College commitment

Tommy Barnhouse, Leavenworth, 10
Evan Bourn, BV West, Neosho County
Will Brennan, Blue Valley 10
Christian Cederio, Colgan, PSU
Henry deNoble, Manhattan, Iowa Western CC
Brandon Gomer, Shawnee Mission Northwest
Austin Hansen, Olathe Northwest, 11
Brogan Heinen, Hayden 11
Sam Hersh, Eisenhower, Iowa Western CC
Austin Higgins, Shawnee Heights
Miller Hogan, Blue Valley Southwest
Greysen Jenista, DeSoto 11
Joe Lienhard, Kapaun 11
Allen McCae, Bishop Carroll 10
Justin McNorton, Topeka Seaman
Jordan Miller, Bishop Carroll
Braden Minor, Eisenhower, 10
Wally Nellor, Gardner Edgerton Johnson County
Easton Palmer, Larned, Garden City CC
Neal Pint, Saint Thomas Aquinas, 10
Alex Ruxlow, McPherson
Brendan Stanek, BV Southwest 11
Miles Starks, Andover
Cory Steward, Wichita East, 11
Jesse Steinbring, Manhattan 11
Jacob Sylvester, Shawnee Mission West, Iowa Western
Seth Troll, Maize

Noah Croft, Saint Thomas Aquinas 11
Reid Fehr, Topeka Seaman
Tyler Garrison, Mill Valley
Drew Green, Lawrence
Chase Kilty, BV Northwest

Quinn Appletoff, Shawnee Mission East, SOUTHWEST BAPTIST
Alec Beatty, Topeka High; 11
Jacob Biller, Manhattan, Fort Scott CC
Connor Boyer, SE Saline, FT HAYS
Kameron Clark Highland Park
Joel Edwards, STA
Cam Estrada, Arkansas City
Blake Fisher, Olathe South, PSU
Jackson Fuller BVNW Lindenwood University
Jared Gates, Wichita Northwest, Iowa Western CC
Austin Giannola, Shawnee Mission South
Drake Herrman, BVSW, PSU
Brady Hoover, Maize, Hutchinson CC
Drew Johnson, Maize, Neosho County
Connor Kaiser, Blue Valley West 11
Alex King, St. James University, Hutchinson CC
Brett Macary, Frontenac, PSU
Jacob Means, Gardner Edgerton , Cowley County
Clayton Milford, Andale
Tyler Palmore, Bishop Carroll
Dayton Pomeroy, Shawnee Heights, Barton County
Ben Ramberg, Topeka West, Butler CC
Garrett Rankin, Derby
Dan Reilly, BV West
Chase Robinson, Blue Valley, Neosho County
Mitch Rogers, Blue Valley
Blake Shinkle, BV Southwest, 11
Garrett Smith, BV West
Kier Stamp, Andover Central
Chad Thomas, Olathe East, Neosho County
Tyler Watson, STA
Brylie Ware, Sedgwick
Wade Winter, Andale 11

Evan Bourn, BV West
Sam Davis, Blue Valley West
Jackson Fuller, BVNW, LINDENWOOD
Mack Gowing, Bishop Carroll, Hutchinson CC
John Labelle, Campus
Aaron Mar, Salina South
Zach Nachbar, Salina South
Tyler Palmer, Washburn Rural
Jack Pauley, STA
Nick Pascuzzi, STA, ROCKHURST
Ben Rodriguez, Paola NEWMAN
Josh Rogers, Blue Valley North,
Kolten Schenker, Augusta Cowley County
Connor Swope, Washburn Rural
Caleb Tapia, Winfield
Trevor Wayman, Mulvane
Ryan Wedermeyer, Olathe Northwest, DRURY
Curtis Whitten, Wichita Heights, 11

Utility :
Jason Barbour, Valley Center 11
Blake Crager, Valley Center; 11
Austin Dunn, Wellington
Josh Farrington, Wichita Heights
Bryce Fischer, Bishop Carroll
Trent McMaster, Washburn Rural.

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