Best high school baseball player from each state for 2019

Kevin Askeland | Friday, January 18, 2019

Riley Greene, Bobby Witt Jr., Spencer Jones among the best players in the country for upcoming season.

MaxPreps throws out the first pitch on its 2019 high school baseball coverage with a look at the top baseball player in each state.

Players are not necessarily the No. 1 recruit in each state, but are instead chosen based on past performance and potential for the 2019 season. The list includes All-Americans and up-and-comers as teams begin workouts to hit the diamond.

Note: Players are not chosen for Montana, South Dakota and Wyoming, as those states do not have baseball as a sanctioned sport by their respective state governing bodies.

Best Baseball Player in Each State

Chandler Best, McGill-Toolen (Mobile)
A Class 7A All-State pitcher and a member of the All-Coastal Alabama first team, Best went 8-1 last year with a 0.66 ERA. He struck out 103 batters in 63.1 innings and tossed six shutouts, a no-hitter and a perfect game.

Leland Wilson, West (Anchorage)

According to Van Williams, American Legion media director in Alaska, Wilson was 8-2 in 11 starts in legion and high school baseball last year, with a 0.62 ERA and 100 strikeouts in 55.5 innings pitched. Wilson earned first team All-State honors from American Family Insurance, was first team All-Cook Inlet Conference and he was on the American Legion Alaska Team of Excellence.

Colten Keith, Verrado (Buckeye)
A MaxPreps Sophomore All-American last year and a Class 5A All-State pick in Arizona after batting .510 with 56 RBIs, 15 doubles, three triples and seven home runs. He's considered one of the top infield prospects in the Class of 2020.

Blake Adams, Har-Ber (Springdale)
Made the Arkansas Preps All-State team as a junior after leading the Wildcats to a state championship. He made the MaxPreps Junior All-American Team as he went 7-2 on the mound with a 2.05 ERA and 89 strikeouts. He also batted .411 with 42 RBIs, nine doubles and eight home runs.

Spencer Jones, La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad)
A standout at first base for La Costa Canyon, but is also considered one of the best left-handed pitchers heading into the 2019 MLB Draft. He has hit 93 mph on his fastball and is one of the bigger pitchers in the draft at 6-foot-7. He batted .414 with five home runs and 32 RBIs last year as well.

Sam Ireland, Mountain Vista (Highlands Ranch)
Was the Class 5A state Player of the Year and a MaxPreps Junior All-American last year after leading Mountain Vista to a state championship. He batted .400 with 43 RBIs, eight doubles and 11 home runs.

Max Cotier, Canterbury School (New Milford)
The Player of the Year in the Western New England Prep League last year. He has committed to play at Virginia next year. As a 12-year old, he helped lead New Milford to the Cal Ripken New England championship. He impressed at the Area Code Games with his ability to put the bat on the ball. Likely will play second base in college.
Graphic by Ryan Escobar
Dominic Velazquez, Dover
One of only two sophomores to make the coaches association All-State team. He went 7-2 on the mound with 97 strikeouts in 59 innings and a 2.02 ERA. He helped Dover, the No. 17 overall seed, reach the semifinals of the state tournament.

Riley Greene, Hagerty (Oviedo)
Florida is always loaded with talent and Greene might be the best of them as he ranks as one of the top outfield prospects heading into the 2019 MLB Draft. He made the MaxPreps Junior All-American Team last year after batting .405 with 36 runs, 26 RBIs and four home runs.

CJ Abrams, Blessed Trinity (Roswell)
Earned All-State honors last year after helping Blessed Trinity go deep in the Class 4A state playoffs. He batted .404 with 22 RBIs, six doubles and three home runs. He is considered one of the top infield prospects in the Class of 2019.

Shane Sasaki, 'Iolani (Honolulu)
One of the nation's top outfield prospects, Sasaki earned All-State honors last year while leading Division 1 in Hawaii with a 30 total hits on the season. He batted .448 with 14 RBIs and 21 runs scored.

Gabriel Hughes, Rocky Mountain (Meridian)
Gatorade named Hughes the state Player of the Year in 2018 after he led Rocky Mountain to a 24-5 record and the consolation title in the Class 5A playoffs. He went 7-1 with a 1.84 ERA and 59 strikeouts in 45.2 innings pitched. He also batted .461 with 31 RBIs and four home runs.

Matt McCormick, St. Laurence (Burbank)
The Gatorade State Player of the Year in Illinois as a junior, McCormick was the Prep Baseball Report Player of the Year as well. He batted .510 with 17 doubles, six triples and nine home runs with 48 RBIs while earning a spot as catcher on the MaxPreps Junior All-American Team.

Avery Short, Southport (Indianapolis)
A participant in the Under Armour All-American Game, Short has been one of the top strikeout pitchers in Indiana the past three seasons. He struck out 93 batters in 48.2 innings pitched last year with only six walks. He went 3-2 with a 0.86 ERA.

Jordan Ellison, Heights (Wichita)
Ellison's rise has been meteoric in Wichita as he went from being unnoticed as a sophomore to Class 5A state Player of the Year as a junior. He went 10-0 on the mound with 72 strikeouts and a 0.65 ERA in 53.2 innings pitched. He also batted .444 with five home runs and 27 RBIs.

Ryan Hawks, Warren East (Bowling Green)
Hawks made the All-State team as a two-way threat last year. He batted .403 with 25 RBIs, 11 doubles and four home runs. On the mound, Hawks was 8-0 with a 1.17 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 54 innings pitched.

Cade Doughty, Denham Springs
The All-Parish Player of the Year and an All-State selection, Doughty batted .327 last year with 32 RBIs and 15 stolen bases while playing shortstop. He also pitched, picking up three wins and eight saves while striking out 37 with a 0.26 ERA in 27.1 innings pitched. He will play at LSU next year.

Hunter Owen, South Portland
An All-State pick and a league MVP as a sophomore, the South Portland junior pitcher went 6-1 last season while striking out 65 batters with a 1.25 ERA in 39 innings pitched.

Gabe Delgado, Howard (Ellicott City)
Had a big year at the plate and on the mound as a junior. He went 5-2 with a 1.92 ERA and 73 strikeouts in 47.1 innings pitched. He also batted .339 with 13 RBIs while earning All-State honors.

Sebastian Keane, North Andover
A Northeastern University signee, Keane was the conference MVP last year and an All-Scholastics selection after going 4-1 on the mound with a 0.32 ERA and hitting .411 with 18 RBIs.

Dillon Kark, St. Mary Prep (Orchard Lake)
A pitcher/shortstop, Kark made the All-State team after leading St. Mary Prep to the state semifinals. He also pitched, striking out 18 batters in one game. He is headed to play at Michigan State.

Will Frisch, Stillwater

A corner infielder and pitcher, Frisch earned second team All-State honors last year from American Family Insurance and he helped Stillwater capture the Class 4A state championship last year. He has already signed to play for NCAA World Series champion Oregon State.

Jerrion Ealy, Jackson Prep (Jackson)
A two-sport star, Ealy could play at the next level in football, where he was an All-American pick. However, he could play professionally in baseball. One of the top outfield prospects in the Class of 2019, Ealy batted .368 with 41 runs and 20 RBIs last year.

Gage Singer, Aurora
The Houn Dawgs were one of the top teams in the nation last year thanks in large part to the play of Singer. An all-state shortstop and pitcher, Singer batted .478 with 40 RBIs and six home runs. He also went 4-0 on the mound with a 0.824 ERA.

Logan Van Treeck, Lincoln Southeast (Lincoln)
One of only three juniors on the All-Super State baseball team, Van Treeck went 5-2 on the mound with a 1.49 ERA. He also tossed a no-hitter against eventual state champion Creighton Prep.

Gavin Amelburu, Green Valley (Henderson)
A MaxPreps Junior All-American and a member of the Nevada Preps All-State Team at catcher, Amelburu batted .420 with 43 RBIs, eight doubles and eight home runs as a junior.
Will Spitznagel, Jesuit
File photo by Brian Murphy
Will Spitznagel, Jesuit
New Hampshire
Keagan Calero, Spaulding (Rochester)
One of the top middle infielders in New England, Calero earned All-State last year by American Family Insurance and by the Baseball Coaches Association.

New Jersey
Jack Leiter, Delbarton (Morristown)
Leiter, the son of former Major League pitcher Al Leiter, has been rising up the recruiting lists after pitching a no-hitter in the Non-Public a semis against Don Bosco Prep last year. He finished 6-3 last season with 77 strikeouts while earning second team All-State honors.

New Mexico
Ben Schoneman, La Cueva (Albuquerque)
An All-State hitter and pitcher for the state champion Bears, Schoneman batted .382 with 24 runs, 29 RBIs and 11 doubles. He also went 8-1 on the mound with 52 strikeouts and a 2.09 ERA.

New York
Jason Diaz, Kellenberg Memorial (Uniondale)
Perhaps the best pitching prospect on Long Island as a sophomore when he was hitting 94 mph on his fastball and leading Kellenberg to a state championship, Diaz did not have as dominant a junior season. However, he is still considered one of the best pitching prospects in the state with a fastball hovering in the low 90s.

North Carolina
Chris Villamin, Ledford Senior (Thomasville)
Villamin helped the Panthers to the Class 2A state championship game against Whiteville. He earned Class 2A All-State honors. He's one of the top returning pitchers in the Class of 2019 after going 10-2 with a 0.67 ERA and 139 strikeouts in 73.1 innings pitched.

North Dakota
Cade Feeney, Century (Bismarck)
A three-sport standout, Feeney quarterbacked the football team to the state championship game last fall, helped the basketball team win a state championship last year and led the baseball team to a state crown as a sophomore. A junior, Feeney is looking to repeat as a state champion on the diamond this spring.

Mack Anglin, Highland (Marengo)
A Clemson signee, Anglin was conference MVP last year and All-State selection. He posted a 4-1 record during the regular season last year with a 1.22 ERA and 45 strikeouts in 23 innings pitched.

Kale Davis, Westmoore (Oklahoma City)
Committed to play at Oklahoma State, Davis was All-Big City first team and All-State second team by the Oklahoman last year. He went 8-0 with a 2.14 ERA and 90 strikeouts in 52.1 innings pitched.

Will Spitznagel, Jesuit (Portland)
Honorable mention All-State in football as a quarterback in the fall, Spitznagel was All-State first team in baseball as a junior. A shortstop, Spitznagel has committed to play at Oregon next year. A three-sport star, Spitznagel is also a standout on the basketball team.

Tyler Kehoe, Archbishop Carroll (Radnor)
An All-State outfielder/pitcher, Kehoe was undefeated on the mound for the Patriots, going 5-0 with a 1.95 ERA and 47 strikeouts in 32.1 innings pitched. He also batted .348 with 23 runs and 25 RBIs.

Rhode Island
Broc French, South Kingstown (Wakefield)

An All-State selection as a junior, French was part of a dominant pitching staff at South Kingstown. He went 7-1 with a 1.75 ERA and 43 strikeouts. He also batted .408 with 13 RBIs.

South Carolina
Geoffrey Gilbert, Bishop England (Charleston)
The All-Low Country Player of the Year and the Class 3A state Player of the Year by the Baseball Coaches Association, Gilbert led Bishop England to a Class 3A state championship. He went 8-0 on the mound with 73 strikeouts and a 0.33 ERA. He also batted .446 with 26 RBIs.

South Dakota
Dylan Kirkeby, Brandon Valley (Brandon)
The senior pitcher helped lead Brandon Valley to a Class A state championship over defending champion Roosevelt last year. He had 56 strikeouts and a 0.35 ERA in 39.1 innings pitched last year while earning All-State honors.

John Rhodes, Chattanooga Christian
Rhodes earned All-State honors last year after leading the state in batting average with a .578 average. He was also second in the state in home runs with 15.

Bobby Witt, Colleyville Heritage
The MaxPreps Junior of the Year last season, Witt Jr., the son of former MLB pitcher Bobby Witt, was also the Dallas News All-Area Offensive Player of the Year. The shortstop is considered the top prep draft prospect for the 2019 MLB draft. He batted .475 with 13 doubles, five triples, 10 home runs and 44 RBIs last year.

Dalton Hodge, Cottonwood (Salt Lake City)
Hodge was All-State by the Deseret News and by American Family Insurance last year. The outfielder batted .475 with 25 RBI, 41 runs scored and 25 RBIs.

Colby Brouillette, Bellows Free Academy (St. Albans)
A  three-sport standout for BFA, Brouillette earned All-State honors in ice hockey and baseball last year. He made the American Family Insurance All-State baseball team at catcher, but is also considered one of the better right-handed pitchers in the state.

Jamari Baylor, Benedictine (Richmond)
Baylor helped Benedictine to a 24-3 record last year in VISAA play, including a win over champion St. Christopher's. He moves from third base to shortstop this year and is considered a possible draft prospect. He batted .482 last year with eight doubles, eight home runs and 28 RBIs.

Carter Young, Selah
Young was the Gatorade State Player of the Year as a junior and had Selah among the top teams in Washington for most of the season. He batted .412 last year with 47 runs scored and four home runs.

West Virginia
Jonathan Blackwell, Hurricane
Blackwell earned All-State honors last season after helping lead Hurricane to the Class AAA championship. Signed to play at Coastal Carolina, Blackwell went 6-2 on the mound with 81 strikeouts in just 48.2 innings pitched.

Jack Washburn, Webster
American Family Insurance and the Wisconsin Coaches Association selected Washburn as the state Player of the Year last season as he went 9-1 on the mound with 98 strikeouts and a 0.88 ERA and batting .443 at the plate with 55 RBIs and 10 home runs.
Geoffrey Gilbert, Bishop England
File photo by Cliff Lavelle
Geoffrey Gilbert, Bishop England