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2014 Recruiting Class

Goal-line

Travel Squad
5 Year Member
I think he'll get drafted...I just don't think the signing bonus $$$ will be enough to have him go toil in the minors over college.
You and analyze all you want. I have watched Reetz play for a good number of years. What he has is the "it" factor in winning. You do not coach that, you can not teach that. Pick him apart all you want, I would take Reetz over any other recruit. Like the old saying goes, "If you are going to be in an alley fight, you will want Reetz on your side." The kid is a winner. He has baseball smarts. When the dust clears, he is the one at the top. I do think he is a risk to be drafted for $$$,$$$.

As I posted in another thread:
Jackson Reetz is an exceptional athlete, intelligent young man, and has outstanding character, who has accomplished what no other high school baseball player in the history of Nebraska has ever accomplished. He is a multi sports athlete who plays baseball, basketball and football. (If he wanted to, he could play D-1 football somewhere.) He is outstanding in all three. Selected as Baseball Gatorade Player of the Year in this area.

Reetz also played in the USA 18U World Championships, which his team won. He was a major contributor. Reetz finished with a .435/.533/.739 line in 29 plate appearances. He led the team with four doubles and hit a home run in the first game against Japan. The athletic, versatile 6-foot, 193-pound Reetz is typically a catcher but saw most of his time in right field. Reetz, who has a good arm and a fastball that can sit in the low 90s, pitched one scoreless inning against Japan. He drove in the go-ahead run in the championship game. No other athlete in the history of Nebraska has ever achieved this status in his sport. Not even Alex Gordon.
The bolded text says it all about Reetz.
 
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BasilLongfellow

HMax's Royal Member
5 Year Member
Just watched his skill videos. 84 across the diamond and 1.94 pop time won't get him drafted anywhere near a signing bonus would tempt him. Don't see him as a catcher in the pros. His arm action loops from behind the plate rather than going straight to the ear and out. He also stands up in his release rather than staying low through the throw. His footwork is good, but he cheats: see the staggered stance? Sometimes that is done to make up for tight hips and arm strength. Not surprising at 84 across the diamond; staggering your feet and picking up an inch or too as you replace your left foot with your right foot can make a big difference in pop time. He's doing both those things and is still 1.94. I'd like him to be closer to 1.8 to 1.9 flat without the cheats to consider a pro prospect as a catcher.

On the bright side, his stance is fantastic. Looks to receive well. Nice and relaxed. Looks athletic and smooth. Passes the eye test. Fills out his uniform. Looks like he has room to grow and maybe add some MPH. Looks like he'd be able to pick up other positions really easy. Filling in ex-catchers around the infield is always a positive; you can count on them always being in the right spot on cuts and back picks.

His pitching looks ok. Really raw. His power point is too horizontal. I'd like to see it a little more compact and centric, i.e. all movement going towards his core. You can see his knee pointing up and out; I'd want the knee to not go as high and end up more closed and pointed into his core. His shoulders look a little tight, most likely a result of the leg kick and his body working not to lean over backwards. The tight shoulders are going to limit his flexibility and arm action. His weight stays back nicely, which is a challenge. I think he could get more out of his legs.

He looks above average on his hitting. A little inconsistent on his swing. Pulls off the low ball. He has strong wrists and quick hands, which is the key. Stays short, good balance. I expect that he'll be able to cut the ball (get down through the ball and lift it at the top of its trajectory) as he gets older and his swing becomes more consistent. No homeruns at Norris is concerning.

Overall, a nice prospect. I like the kid as a player, could fit into a lot of places. I don't think he is a risk to be lost in the draft. I don't see a team paying mid six figures in a signing bonus. He's got a strong arm and good speed. I see him translating to the outfield at higher levels. His videos don't show his other pitches or his command, but I could see him pitching, too. At 6'1" 195, I could see him getting to 93-95 consistent without a problem, provided he adds strength, flexibility and tightens up his mechanics.
He's a good baseball player and I think he could plug in at a lot of places. He may very well catch at NU, I just don't see him as a pure catcher professionally right now. For an NU example, think Jeff Christie compared to him. Christie was tighter fundamentally; heck, he barely hit .220 in college and nearly made it to the show.

The ability to catch may very well save his career some day. I spent some time on a team with a guy who extended his time in the Expos' organization for nearly a season and a half. He was a third baseman and the manager of his minor league team told him he was being released. The guy tells the manager that the transaction was baloney because they'd been playing him in the wrong position his entire career and that he actually was a catcher. Guy had never caught a day in his life. They cancelled the release and he hung around for a while longer. As a result, the ability to catch can really save a player's bacon when they are working their way through the minors.
You and analyze all you want. I have watched Reetz play for a good number of years. What he has is the "it" factor in winning. You do not coach that, you can not teach that. Pick him apart all you want, I would take Reetz over any other recruit. Like the old saying goes, "If you are going to be in an alley fight, you will want Reetz on your side." The kid is a winner. He has baseball smarts. When the dust clears, he is the one at the top. I do think he is a risk to be drafted for $$$,$$$.

As I posted in another thread: The bolded text says it all about Reetz.
I'm glad he has the "it" factor. Make no mistake, I think he is a nice player. I, however, would not compare him to Al. I wouldn't say I "picked him apart" either. If you think I was rough, you should see a bird dog's trumped up scouting report of a prospect the bird dog didn't file with the regional scout after the regional scout asks the bird dog why he is hearing about the prospect from other organizations but the bird dog hasn't said anything. Words like "cocaine" and "lazy" and "fluke" can ruin a guy real quick.

I know nothing about the kid other than the skills video clips SSO linked. Your quote validated my analysis of his talents:

The athletic, versatile 6-foot, 193-pound Reetz is typically a catcher but saw most of his time in right field.
I bolded my thoughts on how he translates into the professional game from three weeks ago. When he got the chance to play in a professional environment, he played right field. I called that from watching about 3 minutes of film. He may get big dollars some day, I'll be surprised if he gets the big money once he graduates from HS. Major League franchises don't pay big dollars for kids that don't hit homeruns in high school and play outfield.

I spent the most posting time on Reetz because my expertise lies in catching, pitchers and middle infield (in that order). I hope he gets a big payday, I just think it will be after he gets older and stronger.
 
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Goal-line

Travel Squad
5 Year Member
I'm glad he has the "it" factor. Make no mistake, I think he is a nice player. I, however, would not compare him to Al. I wouldn't say I "picked him apart" either. If you think I was rough, you should see a bird dog's trumped up scouting report of a prospect the bird dog didn't file with the regional scout after the regional scout asks the bird dog why he is hearing about the prospect from other organizations but the bird dog hasn't said anything. Words like "cocaine" and "lazy" and "fluke" can ruin a guy real quick.

I know nothing about the kid other than the skills video clips SSO linked. Your quote validated my analysis of his talents:



I bolded my thoughts on how he translates into the professional game from three weeks ago. When he got the chance to play in a professional environment, he played right field. I called that from watching about 3 minutes of film. He may get big dollars some day, I'll be surprised if he gets the big money once he graduates from HS. Major League franchises don't pay big dollars for kids that don't hit homeruns in high school and play outfield.

I spent the most posting time on Reetz because my expertise lies in catching, pitchers and middle infield (in that order). I hope he gets a big payday, I just think it will be after he gets older and stronger.
Obviously, no one has a crystal ball. Don't know where his draft status is or will it will end up. I do know that he recently has had several scouts from professional teams show up at his doorstep and observe a weekend workout. The story I got was that the scouts were pleasantly surprised with the kid's abilities in all aspects of the game. He is an extremely goal orientated and driven player. Not many athletes who have tons of talent have the push to make the necessary sacrifices to meet their goals. Reetz does those things and more. Unfortunately for all of us, the media, social media, forums and blogs all paint these kids to be more than what they might be. However, in Reetz's case, unless you have actually seen him play, and play in highly competitive situations, you simply do not get the full picture. As I said, he is a winner.

I hope he plays a couple of years at NU because I am a bit selfish and want to watch him contribute to the program. Also, playing on the collegiate level will only help hone his skills and allow him to play on a daily basis along side kids with the similar talent and skill sets. Being picked to play on the 18U USA team pretty much separates him from most young high school players. And, if you look at his stats in that World Championship run, he was impressive, no doubt about that.Reetz also played in the USA 18U World Championships, which his team won. He was a major contributor. Reetz finished with a .435/.533/.739 line in 29 plate appearances. He led the team with four doubles and hit a home run in the first game against Japan. He drove in the go-ahead run in the championship game.
 
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BasilLongfellow

HMax's Royal Member
5 Year Member
Obviously, no one has a crystal ball. Don't know where his draft status is or will it will end up. I do know that he recently has had several scouts from professional teams show up at his doorstep and observe a weekend workout. The story I got was that the scouts were pleasantly surprised with the kid's abilities in all aspects of the game. He is an extremely goal orientated and driven player. Not many athletes who have tons of talent have the push to make the necessary sacrifices to meet their goals. Reetz does those things and more. Unfortunately for all of us, the media, social media, forums and blogs all paint these kids to be more than what they might be. However, in Reetz's case, unless you have actually seen him play, and play in highly competitive situations, you simply do not get the full picture. As I said, he is a winner.

I hope he plays a couple of years at NU because I am a bit selfish and want to watch him contribute to the program. Also, playing on the collegiate level will only help hone his skills and allow him to play on a daily basis along side kids with the similar talent and skill sets. Being picked to play on the 18U USA team pretty much separates him from most young high school players. And, if you look at his stats in that World Championship run, he was impressive, no doubt about that.Reetz also played in the USA 18U World Championships, which his team won. He was a major contributor. Reetz finished with a .435/.533/.739 line in 29 plate appearances. He led the team with four doubles and hit a home run in the first game against Japan. He drove in the go-ahead run in the championship game.
I don't dispute any of your post at all. I will say that the "it" factor, at least in baseball from my experience, is directly related to talent in relation to the talent around the player.

He does have impressive stats; I agree. Making the USA team is impressive, no doubt. However, that knife cuts both ways. For example, lots of college dudes think playing in the Cape Cod League is sweet. It is a hell of an experience I'm told and a lot of fun. However, most of them end up hurting their stock there rather than helping it as they put up average numbers rather than truly dominate like they had previously at their school. Like it or not, Reetz's talent requires that he put up some power numbers. Maybe he will this spring. I hope he does for him. Might even be worth a cycle or two to get there. Lots of guys on the edge do that to get the money; he's competing against that element, too, if he goes clean. He could boost his last year of high school and no one would ever know. (For the record, I'm a slight pro-steriod lean, but that probably deserves a different thread. I've never used steroids; know lots of dudes that have, know lots of dudes that wish they would have).

My thoughts on him are simply 1) he doesn't have big dollar power yet. I hope it develops. 2) I don't see him as a catcher in the professional ranks and I'd be surprised if he ended up as an every day guy behind the plate at the D-1 level. His 1.9 pop time should be much better (1.7-1.8) for both of the aforementioned levels, particularly if he is consistently living at +1, +2, or +3 of the mound. I just see him in the outfield or corner infield in the long term.

Lastly, major league organizations don't really give a damn about intangibles. They care only, at a minimum, about one of four things: 1) How hard can you throw it? 2) How far can you hit it? 3) Can you catch it? and 4) How fast can you run? Remember, they all have "camps" in the Dominican and Venezula where there are dozens of 14 year olds that can do everything Reetz can do (and I'm not exaggerating)

Going to UNL is a good move for him. Get drafted, see the bonus money they throw to him, get some experience in the draft process, put three college seasons in, cement a long term position, get stronger, enjoy college, develop some maturity that will be BADLY needed in short season ball. Having some extra years in life can really help a guy out there.
 

Goal-line

Travel Squad
5 Year Member
I don't dispute any of your post at all. I will say that the "it" factor, at least in baseball from my experience, is directly related to talent in relation to the talent around the player.

He does have impressive stats; I agree. Making the USA team is impressive, no doubt. However, that knife cuts both ways. For example, lots of college dudes think playing in the Cape Cod League is sweet. It is a hell of an experience I'm told and a lot of fun. However, most of them end up hurting their stock there rather than helping it as they put up average numbers rather than truly dominate like they had previously at their school. Like it or not, Reetz's talent requires that he put up some power numbers. Maybe he will this spring. I hope he does for him. Might even be worth a cycle or two to get there. Lots of guys on the edge do that to get the money; he's competing against that element, too, if he goes clean. He could boost his last year of high school and no one would ever know. (For the record, I'm a slight pro-steriod lean, but that probably deserves a different thread. I've never used steroids; know lots of dudes that have, know lots of dudes that wish they would have).

My thoughts on him are simply 1) he doesn't have big dollar power yet. I hope it develops. 2) I don't see him as a catcher in the professional ranks and I'd be surprised if he ended up as an every day guy behind the plate at the D-1 level. His 1.9 pop time should be much better (1.7-1.8) for both of the aforementioned levels, particularly if he is consistently living at +1, +2, or +3 of the mound. I just see him in the outfield or corner infield in the long term.

Lastly, major league organizations don't really give a damn about intangibles. They care only, at a minimum, about one of four things: 1) How hard can you throw it? 2) How far can you hit it? 3) Can you catch it? and 4) How fast can you run? Remember, they all have "camps" in the Dominican and Venezula where there are dozens of 14 year olds that can do everything Reetz can do (and I'm not exaggerating)

Going to UNL is a good move for him. Get drafted, see the bonus money they throw to him, get some experience in the draft process, put three college seasons in, cement a long term position, get stronger, enjoy college, develop some maturity that will be BADLY needed in short season ball. Having some extra years in life can really help a guy out there.
Well, I am nearing my 70th birthday. I know baseball has changed a ton since I played back in the 1960's when I took a shot at it. Kids are stronger, faster and have facilities/equipment that were unimaginable back in the day. Having said that, and having played the game a lot myself, I would respectfully disagree with parts of your analysis. Yes, I know the "run fast/throw hard" parameters. There are a lot of players who possess those qualities. And, a lot of those guys fizzle out because they do not have the focus to understand the necessity of working hard. I believe Reetz will commit to making himself a better player and has the resolve to get that done. From the NU baseball sources I know, they all tell me Reetz is penciled in at the catcher position next year. Whatever path he takes, I think that he will, someday, end up in the big show. I truly believe he posses the talent/work ethic/determination to do that.
 
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Pops

I have squandered my resistance
10 Year Member
I don't dispute any of your post at all. I will say that the "it" factor, at least in baseball from my experience, is directly related to talent in relation to the talent around the player.

He does have impressive stats; I agree. Making the USA team is impressive, no doubt. However, that knife cuts both ways. For example, lots of college dudes think playing in the Cape Cod League is sweet. It is a hell of an experience I'm told and a lot of fun. However, most of them end up hurting their stock there rather than helping it as they put up average numbers rather than truly dominate like they had previously at their school. Like it or not, Reetz's talent requires that he put up some power numbers. Maybe he will this spring. I hope he does for him. Might even be worth a cycle or two to get there. Lots of guys on the edge do that to get the money; he's competing against that element, too, if he goes clean. He could boost his last year of high school and no one would ever know. (For the record, I'm a slight pro-steriod lean, but that probably deserves a different thread. I've never used steroids; know lots of dudes that have, know lots of dudes that wish they would have).

My thoughts on him are simply 1) he doesn't have big dollar power yet. I hope it develops. 2) I don't see him as a catcher in the professional ranks and I'd be surprised if he ended up as an every day guy behind the plate at the D-1 level. His 1.9 pop time should be much better (1.7-1.8) for both of the aforementioned levels, particularly if he is consistently living at +1, +2, or +3 of the mound. I just see him in the outfield or corner infield in the long term.

Lastly, major league organizations don't really give a damn about intangibles. They care only, at a minimum, about one of four things: 1) How hard can you throw it? 2) How far can you hit it? 3) Can you catch it? and 4) How fast can you run? Remember, they all have "camps" in the Dominican and Venezula where there are dozens of 14 year olds that can do everything Reetz can do (and I'm not exaggerating)

Going to UNL is a good move for him. Get drafted, see the bonus money they throw to him, get some experience in the draft process, put three college seasons in, cement a long term position, get stronger, enjoy college, develop some maturity that will be BADLY needed in short season ball. Having some extra years in life can really help a guy out there.
My nephews son just played in the cape cod league this past fall. Was number one pitcher going in an coming out. Said he had the best time of his life and the extra play will help this spring.
 

BasilLongfellow

HMax's Royal Member
5 Year Member
My nephews son just played in the cape cod league this past fall. Was number one pitcher going in an coming out. Said he had the best time of his life and the extra play will help this spring.
Based upon your nephew's son's projections, I'm betting he dropped a lot of dude's draft stock!
 

BasilLongfellow

HMax's Royal Member
5 Year Member
Well, I am nearing my 70th birthday. I know baseball has changed a ton since I played back in the 1960's when I took a shot at it. Kids are stronger, faster and have facilities/equipment that were unimaginable back in the day. Having said that, and having played the game a lot myself, I would respectfully disagree with parts of your analysis. Yes, I know the "run fast/throw hard" parameters. There are a lot of players who possess those qualities. And, a lot of those guys fizzle out because they do not have the focus to understand the necessity of working hard. I believe Reetz will commit to making himself a better player and has the resolve to get that done. From the NU baseball sources I know, they all tell me Reetz is penciled in at the catcher position next year. Whatever path he takes, I think that he will, someday, end up in the big show. I truly believe he posses the talent/work ethic/determination to do that.
I hope he's able to work in where ever he wants to play. If he ends up starting at catcher, that's good, because he's dropped his 1.9 pop time.

I hope he makes it to the big leagues, too.
 

BasilLongfellow

HMax's Royal Member
5 Year Member
http://www.perfectgame.org/Players/Playerprofile.aspx?ID=275587


I looked up the roster for the U18 USA team and the link above is for one of the pure catchers on the team, Michael Rivera.

Here is Reetz's link again for convenience:

http://www.perfectgame.org/Players/Playerprofile.aspx?ID=292615

Watch both video's for comparison.

Arm Action

Rivera's arm goes up straight to his ear and through the ball. Tight arm circle. Watch Reetz's arm stay horizontal and kind of whip back. Rivera's is text book.

Feet

Both guys are using a staggered stance. Rivera is exaggerating his a little. Most guys will be slightly staggered with a runner on first. Rivera is a little over exaggerated, I'm pretty sure he is taking a liberty with that as he is at a showcase.

In any event, look at the space between their feet as they come out of the stance into the throwing position. Reetz feet travel too much. Rivera has quick, punchy steps, particularly the throw at 0:17 seconds. Rivera is text book.

Vertical Rise

Rivera doesn't stay quite as low as I would like to see, but he doesn't stand up as much as Reetz. He has an advantage in that he is shorter than Reetz and Reetz is all legs. I was similarly built to Reetz when I played. Catchers with long legs have a harder time staying down through the chute.

Conclusion

I provide the comparison to show a guy that will catch professionally, Rivera, versus a guy that is no doubt a good catcher at his current level, but will get transitioned to a different position, Reetz. I think after watching both clips, all of us can agree that both guys know what they are doing behind the dish. However, I think the videos also provide good examples of a pure professional catching prospect and a professional "athlete" prospect.
 
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BasilLongfellow

HMax's Royal Member
5 Year Member
If you want to see the Big League prototype, here is Yadier Molina. In my opinion, the primary reason why the Cardinals have been so successful. Not the same angle, but you will get the idea. Rivera emulates Molina

[video=youtube;Ndgw_KF6Rck]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ndgw_KF6Rck[/video]

[video=youtube;5OFmNMOcrmU]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5OFmNMOcrmU[/video]
 

BasilLongfellow

HMax's Royal Member
5 Year Member
I'll add that there is a poster on this board that put Reetz's offensive numbers to shame in Class A ball in high school. I would have no problem comparing his OF ability to Al's; and Al has won a couple gold gloves. The poster is not in the big leagues. You have to hit home runs to make it as an outfielder.
 

ShortSideOption

All American
10 Year Member
I'll bump this thread so we can see what recruits we have coming in and what early holes we might need filled next year?

Our Seniors are:
RHP - Bublitz
RHP - Deleon
RHP - Greco
LHP - Hirsch
OF - Kildow
LHP - King
OF - Pritchard

Obviously others could go out early...
 

ShortSideOption

All American
10 Year Member
Just wanted to bump this so people see how many arms we are bringing in for this recruiting cycle. I truly do think that Erstad and Silva thought when they got here in 2012 that they had more quality pitching. The reality after the 2012 season was that they needed to go out and get more. So the 2013 class Erstad tried just bringing in a mixture of everything and he did what he could with 2012 class which was less than 10 kids I thought.

2014 is the cycle where Erstad was really able to evaluate what he had or was going to have and recruit to it. This season is not over, but I look for big/bigger things in 2015. I know the B1G isn't a high quality league, and I do think that we should be able to win in consistently or at least closer to a regular basis once Erstad gets his guys here. We are at about half and half now.

Silva has been a disappointment for me but I'm willing to give til' 2015 before I get too upset. Need to win either conference regular season or a tournament by the end of 2015 though...
 
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