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New York's Top MLB Draft Prospects

1. Lineras Torres Jr., RHP, Beacon (N.Y.) HS (BA Rank: 55)
HS • 6-2 • 185 • R-R •
One of the younger players in the draft class—he’ll turn 18 in October—Torres offers tremendous upside with his quick arm and highly projectable frame. Torres burst onto the radar last summer with a strong showcase circuit and an invitation to compete in USA Baseball’s 18U National Team trials in Minnesota. Growing up playing mostly shortstop, Torres has shifted his focus to pitching over the last four years, working with pitching coach Angel Lugo to refine his mechanics, add strength and incorporate his lower body into his delivery. Torres has touched 98 mph and consistently lived 94-96 mph this spring, pitching from a full wind-up after mostly throwing from the stretch in past years. He pairs the pitch with a low-80s slider that he can sometimes get under, but flashes above-average with room for growth; he’s made adjustments to the pitch in recent weeks that have helped with consistency. A work-in-progress changeup serves as a third pitch, but Torres doesn’t often need to use it against the high school hitters in his area. Still somewhat raw and relatively new to pitching, Torres’ control grades above his command, and scouts are split on whether he’ll be a starter or a reliever long term. While there’s some risk to Torres from that standpoint, his youth, projectability and sheer arm strength should be enough for a team to call his name in the first three rounds.

2. Josiah Gray, RHP, Le Moyne (N.Y.) (BA Rank: 101)
4YR • Jr. • 6-0 • 170 • R-R •
Division II Le Moyne (N.Y.) was the only school that offered Gray a scholarship. Coach Scott Cassidy liked Gray’s athleticism and his quick arm and believed he had the potential to develop. Gray has rewarded Cassidey’s faith by developing into the one of the best pitchers in Division II. After playing sporadically as a freshman shortstop, Gray touched 94 mph pitching in the Hamptons Collegiate Baseball League that summer. He split time between shortstop and closing as a sophomore, but switched to focus solely on pitching in the Cape Cod League the summer before his junior year. Gray’s full-time move to the mound has paid off handsomely. He’s gained 35 pounds since he arrived on campus and is now a solid 6-foot-4, 205 pounds. He dominated in his first year as a starter, going 10-0, 1.28 to rank among national leaders in ERA. He’s still developing as a pitcher, but he’s sitting 90-95 mph with his fastball. He has a very fast arm and fills the strike zone with above-average control for his age, even if his command still needs refinement. Gray throws his slider and changeup for strikes, but both have been more fringe-average to average pitches this spring. His slider flashed above-average in the Cape Cod League last summer in shorter stints. Gray could end up eventually moving to the bullpen, but he’s athletic and has very few innings on his arm, so scouts can dream that there’s even more to come.

3. Charles Mack, SS/3B/C, Williamsville (N.Y.) East HS (BA Rank: 118)
HS • 5-11 • 185 • L-R •
Committed to Clemson, Mack has above-average bat speed and routinely puts on a good show in batting practice with above-average raw power from his 5-foot-11, 185-pound frame. He’s cleaned up his hands and load over the last couple of years and scouts think he has a chance to be an above-average hitter. Mack is an infielder who plays mostly shortstop in high school, but there are questions about his defensive home in the future. If he stays on the infield, Mack’s range and defensive actions would seem to fit best at second base, although there are scouts that think he could be an above-average defensive catcher down the line. He doesn’t regularly catch for Williamsville (N.Y.) East, however, which makes projecting his future defensive value even tougher. A team that is firm in its belief of Mack’s defensive position and value will likely draft him somewhere between the second and fourth rounds, trusting that his ability to hit for both average and power will prove worthy.

4. John Rooney, LHP, Hofstra (BA Rank: 144)
4YR • Jr. • 6-5 • 225 • L-L •
A 6-foot-5, 225-pound lefthander, Rooney has had an incredible season for Hofstra in 2018. Through his first 12 starts, Rooney compiled a 8-1, 1.01 record, striking out 99 batters and walking 22 in 89 innings. He also pitched in the Cape Cod League last summer, and while his overall numbers (1-2, 4.38 with 29 strikeouts and 15 walks in 37 innings) weren’t great, he was better in the second half of the summer. Rooney’s fastball can reach 93 mph and he also throws an above-average slider that comes across in the low to mid-80s. He does well throwing both pitches for strikes and shows at least average control. He’s remade his body since his summer in the Cape and has lost some weight, but he still isn’t overly athletic. He also has a longer arm action and has yet to find consistency with his third-pitch changeup. For those reasons, there is some reliever risk with Rooney, who could be an effective two-pitch lefty out of the bullpen. But it’s hard to argue with Rooney’s results as a junior, so if a team believes in his ability to find an average third pitch he could go off the board higher than his ranking suggests.

5. Brandon Neeck, LHP, Horace Greeley HS, Chappaqua, N.Y. (BA Rank: 157)
HS • 6-1 • 185 • R-L •

A Virginia commit, Neeck is an athletic lefthander with a fluid delivery that features some deception. He missed some time earlier in the spring due to a minor back injury, but has since returned to the mound and pitched well. Neeck’s fastball sits comfortably in the 88-91 mph range, touching 92, and features some arm-side run. Neeck shows good feel for a solid-average slider, especially when he throws it in the low 80s and it features more sharp break than slurvy shape. He consistently finds the strike zone with both his fastball and slider, but a lack of a third pitch—which he doesn’t really need against New York prep competition—is at least a mild cause for concern when considering his chance to be a starting pitcher at the next level. A team selecting Neeck in the top three rounds is not out of the question.

6. Fabian Pena, C, Manhattan (BA Rank: 269)
4YR • Jr. • 5-11 • 205 • R-R •
A stocky, 5-foot-11, 205-pound catcher, Pena is a strong catch-and-throw backstop who profiles well defensively. He also showed some feel to hit during his first two years with Manhattan in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, but that ability didn’t show up in the same way this spring. Pena hit just .255/.365/.411 with six home runs in 2018 after hitting .330 or better in each of his first two seasons. Pena has plus raw power and homered nine times as a freshman. He has hit with pop in wood-bat leagues as well, most notably when he recorded a .282/.342/.485 slash line with four home runs and nine doubles in 30 games in the Valley League in 2016. He held his own in the Cape Cod League in 2017 but didn’t have the same power, hitting .275/.344/.388 with two home runs in 24 games. With a pull-oriented approach and a down spring, scouts see Pena as having a backup profile. He does, however, have the soft hands, reliable receiving ability and arm strength to project as a plus defender.

7. Henry Davis, C, Fox Lane HS, Bedford, N.Y. (BA Rank: 306)
HS • 6-1 • 205 • R-R •
A 6-foot-1, 205-pound catcher out of New York, Davis has one of the strongest arms in the entire 2018 draft class, with some scouts going as far as saying it currently stacks up with some of the harder-throwing backstops in the majors. The arm is Davis’ loudest tool, with 70-grade arm strength and a plus arm action on his throws as well. It’s less hyperbole than most players when saying Davis has a cannon. He’s a defensive-first backstop however, and could make it to campus at Louisville because of that, though he has added 10-15 pounds of muscle over the offseason and homered this spring against some of the top pitchers in his area. Offensively, he has fringe-average bat speed and below-average power, though that seems to be trending in the right direction, with a bat path that can get a bit long at times.

8. Scott Eisenmenger, 1B, St. John Fisher (N.Y.) (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-4 • 235 • R-R •
Eisenmenger has the size (6-foot-4, 235 pounds), power (11 home runs last year) and production (.381/.480/.669) to be a senior sign.

9. Aaron Sabato, SS/2B/3B, Brunswick School, Rye Brook, N.Y. (BA Rank: N/A)
HS • 6-3 • 225 • B-R •

10. Matt Hogan, OF/RHP, Half Hollow Hills East HS, Dix Hills, N.Y. (BA Rank: N/A)
HS • 6-0 • 190 • L-R •

11. Andrew Turner, 3B, Long Island-Brooklyn (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-1 • 200 • R-R •

12. Logan O'Hoppe, C, St. John the Baptist HS, West Islip, N.Y. (BA Rank: N/A)
HS • 6-3 • 205 • R-R •

13. Tom Sutera, RHP, Siena (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Jr. • 6-5 • 190 • L-R •

14. Jamie Galazin, OF/RHP, St. John's (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-4 • 205 • R-R •

15. Josh Shaw, 2B, St. John's (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Jr. • 5-11 • 200 • R-R •

16. Giovanni Dingcong, OF, St. Thomas Aquinas (N.Y.) (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-2 • 230 • R-R •

17. Freddy  Sabido, LHP/OF, Wagner (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • RS-So. • 6-7 • 190 • L-L •

18. Mike  Lopresti, RHP, St. John's (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Jr. • 6-4 • 220 • R-R •

19. John Valente, 2B/3B, St. John's (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Gr. • 5-11 • 190 • R-R •

20. Randall Kanemaru, SS/3B, Columbia (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-2 • 215 • R-R •

21. Joseph Pena, 2B/SS, St. Thomas Aquinas (N.Y.) (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 5-9 • 170 • B-R •


High-Speed Cameras Give Triston McKenzie An Inside Edge

Indians righthander Triston McKenzie improved his breaking ball with the help of high-speed cameras.

22. Kevin Magee, LHP, St. John's (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-2 • 210 • L-L •

23. Aaron Pinto, RHP, Stony Brook (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-0 • 200 • L-R •

24. Jon Rosoff, C, Army (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 5-9 • 175 • L-R •

25. Bobby  Honeyman, 3B, Stony Brook (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-0 • 190 • L-R •

26. Greg Cullen, SS/2B, Niagara (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Jr. • 5-10 • 175 • L-L •

27. Phil Capra, C, Wagner (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Jr. • 5-10 • 205 • B-R •

28. Harrisen Egly, RHP, Columbia (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-5 • 205 • R-R •

29. Franklin Parra, LHP, Copiague (N.Y.) HS (BA Rank: N/A)
HS • 6-1 • 170 • L-L •

30. Reiss Knehr, RHP, Fordham (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Jr. • 6-3 • 220 • L-R •

31. Tyler Smith, RHP, Canisius (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-0 • 233 • R-R •

32. Charlie Jerla, LHP, Marist (BA Rank: N/A)
4YR • Sr. • 6-1 • 185 • L-L •

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