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Lancellotti, Leach Show Well In Boston



BOSTON
—The talent pool at the Rivalry Classic—an annual Northeast scouting event at Fenway Park—was deep this year, including speedy center fielder Quentin Holmes, hard-throwing righthanders Joe Lancellotti and Chris McMahon, Canadians Adam Hall and Cooper Davis and New Jersey third baseman Nick Egnatuk. The event on Sept. 3 also allowed for some younger prospects to establish themselves on a national scene, and a few prospects to push their names into spring follow consideration. The rosters are broken up into two teams—the Yankees and the Red Sox, hence the name of the event. The Rivalry Classic has become an important event for Northeast area scouts, but it also drew a crowd that included scouting directors and national crosscheckers. The teams were managed by Northeast scouts Matt Hyde (Yankees) and Ray Fagnant (Red Sox), two highly regarded scouts and coaches. What follows is a breakdown of some of the talent at this year’s Rivalry Classic. Players are 2017 graduates unless noted. Three Pitchers After pitching at 89-93 mph on Aug. 1 at the East Coast Pro showcase, Joe Lancellotti (Archbishop Wood High, Warminster, Pa.) showed excellent velocity eight days later, sitting at 92-94 and bumping 96 (on multiple radar guns) in his first inning at the Area Code Games on Aug. 9. At the Rivalry Classic, the North Carolina commit worked at 89-92 before settling in at 87-89 in the second inning. Lancellotti also showed an improved knuckle curveball; after previously showing inconsistent shape and lateness of break earlier in the summer, Lancellotti snapped off a few breaking balls with average or better lateness of break and deep top-to-bottom shape. The pitch worked at 75-79, and it projects as a near-average offering at the highest level. Lancellotti’s best offspeed pitch right now is his changeup, an effective change-of-pace, ground-ball inducer. The righthander throws it with fastball arm speed, allowing his grip and the drag of his back foot off the rubber to reduce the pitch’s velocity. The Pennsylvania native has a foundation for commanding his pitches, with some athleticism to his lower half and a repeatable stride and landing. His arm action has some length to it, with his shoulder opening up early and his forearm wrapping slightly behind his body. But Lancellotti showed the ability to find his three-quarters arm slot consistently at Fenway and he showed the ability to navigate the strike zone from east to west, as well as the ability to spot his fastball up in the zone for a chase swing. Landon Leach (Pickering High, Ajax, Ontario, Canada) also showed well. The righthander, who plays travel baseball with the Toronto Mets, was on the roster at East Coast Pro, but did not attend. Three scouts told Baseball America that they had heard rumors of mid-90s fastball velocity for Leach but had not yet seen him in person. At Fenway, Leach didn’t quite show that rumored velocity, but he did show the arm speed and physical frame to make those rumors seem plausible. Leach has a slight wrap in the back of his arm action. At Fenway, he lacked consistent timing in his delivery, with his front side planting inconsistently and his arm sometimes coming through late, giving him trouble repeating his release point. Leach pitched off his fastball, which reached 93 mph, and he hung the pitch often. His velocity settled in at 89-91 and showed flashes of late life, with arm-side run at times. The righthander threw a breaking ball in warmups. He threw it to his arm side with some sharp spin, but the pitch backed up. It showed the natural spin to project as a useable offering, though he did not show conviction in his breaking ball in this look. Brad Dobzanski (Delsea High, Franklin, N.J.) showed impressive athleticism on the mound, not surprising given the background of his brother Bryan Dobzanski, who pitches in the Cardinals farm system and was an elite high school wrestler. Brad showed a fluid and flexible delivery. He has a full arm circle and was able to consistently find his three-quarters arm slot and get his torso extended out over his front side. Dobzanski has an athletic leg lift and bounces out into his stride, landing with his front side closed off. Dobzanski showed flashes with a 12-to-6 curveball. When Dobzanski timed his delivery well, the pitch showed late with and deep break. With his front side cut off and his delivery dependent on the motion of his torso, Dobzanski struggled to stay on top of his curveball consistently, sometimes showing earlier break out of his hand. The righthander showed late movement on his fastball, getting both movement and downhill plane to prevent hitters from squaring him up. His fastball velocity ranged from 87-90 and he has some projection left in his body. While it wasn’t an elite profile, Dobzanski proved worthy of following up on this spring. Three Position Players Virginia commit Devin Ortiz (St. Joseph Regional High, Montvale, N.J.) showed well at Fenway, going 1-for-2 with a strikeout and two walks. Ortiz has a wiry build with room to add strength as he matures physically. He has a slightly open stance and a toe tap before his hips fire, but he showed the ability to turn his hips and keep his kinetic chain in sync. Ortiz has a hand raise and slight back elbow lift to load his hands, but showed the ability to drive the ball with backspin, sending a line drive back up the middle. The righthanded hitter also showed some strike zone awareness. Defensively, Ortiz showed loose, fluid actions and plenty of arm strength for the left side of the infield. How his body projects may determine his long term defensive future, but his showing at Fenway certainly elevated his stock, and he is worth following up on in the spring. Jason Pineda (James Monroe High, Bronx, N.Y.) also showed intriguing tools, primarily with his righthanded bat. In batting practice, he showed a loose, downhill swing geared for line drives, and he showed pull power. Pineda’s timing is still raw at the plate, and he’s prone to rolling over the ball with topspin. At the Rivalry Classic, Pineda went 2-for-5, with a strikeout, a groundout, a single and a double. He swung and missed early in counts, taking aggressive hacks and looking to drive the ball early. He did square up a 91-mph fastball for his double, pulling a line drive to left center field. On his single, Pineda reached third on an error in left field. The ball came off Pineda’s bat with authority, and he projects for more power down the line. He has a stocky, 6-foot, 220-pound build and is a below-average runner. He has above-average arm strength at third base. Pineda may not fit the prototypical professional profile out of high school, but he could develop into a very good prospect at Michigan, where he is committed. Behind the plate, David Lamanna (Bergen Catholic High, Oradell, N.J.) showed quick-twitch athleticism, flashing plus arm strength and a flexible lower half. The righthanded hitter went 0-for-2 with a strikeout, a walk and a hard flyout to center field. Lamanna drops and wraps his hands slightly to load his swing, and he’s still learning how to use his lower half, but he has average bat speed and looseness to his swing. Three underclassmen of note • 2018 outfielder Mike Siani (William Penn Charter, Philadelphia) has projectable tools. He’s committed to Virginia, and made the 40-player roster for Team USA’s 18U National Team trials, set to begin in Houston this upcoming weekend. • Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville (Texas) Heritage High), a prospect in the class of 2019, has a high ceiling as a two-way prospect. He is committed to Oklahoma, and is the son of 16-year major league starter Bobby Witt, who was the No. 3 overall pick in the 1985 draft. • 2018 catcher Pat Winkel (Amity Regional High, Woodbridge, Conn.) has intriguing tools and plays a premium defensive position. He will be followed closely when he is draft-eligible. Pat is the younger brother of UConn freshman Chris Winkel, who ranked No. 342 in the 2016 BA 500
Spencer Myers Notredamebrianwesterholtfourseam

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. Pat is also committed to UConn.

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