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High School  | General  | 2/22/2024

Northeast Dream Team & Top Tools

David Rawnsley     

The state of New York doesn’t have its normal lock on the All-Northeast Region team, although they do have the Region’s top player and only Perfect Game All-American in shortstop Owen Paino.  Part of this is due to transfers, however, as shortstop Jayden Stroman (IMG Academy) and outfielder Isaiah Shivers (moved to Louisiana to prepare for college) would both have been All-Region selections.

New York does appear to have a very strong junior class, however, led by right handed pitcher Miguel Sime, the hardest thrower in the 2025 class nationally, and Justice De Jong, one of the top third baseman in the country.

C – Matt Conte (Sr., Dexter Southfield HS, Mass.)

Conte has a great combination of size at 6-foot-2, 200-pounds and run and throw athleticism, with a 6.96 sixty to his credit along with a 84 mph arm in catching drills.  The right-handed hitter posted .333-2-28 numbers for Dexter Southfield HS last year as a junior and has been committed/signed with Wake Forest since 2021

1B – Gabriel Tirado (Sr., The Loomis Chaffee School, Conn.)

Tirado was the All-Northeast Region catcher last year but he also plays some first base and is a better fit for that position this team.  Tirado’s best tool is his left-handed bat and especially his power.  He has a power approach at the plate with elite level exit velocities and tons of pull carry but has also hit over .350 on volume in each of his last five Perfect game seasons.  Tirado is signed with Connecticut.

MIF – Julio Solier (Sr., Springfield Central HS, Mass.)

Solier is a multi-tooled middle infielder who has a chance to stay in the middle infield at the next level while also being a performer with his right-handed bat.  He hit .541 in PG tournament play in 2022, then came back last summer and hit three home runs in 19 games.  Solier is signed with Vanderbilt and is ranked 198th in the 2024 PG class rankings.

MIF – Owen Paino (Sr., Roy Ketcham HS, N.Y.)

Paino is the only Perfect Game All-American in the Northeast Region and is the 16th ranked player in the 2024 class nationally.  A 6-foot-3, 205-pound athlete with a big throwing arm, Paino should be able to stay on the left side of the infield, either at shortstop or third base, for a long time.  He has a smooth and compact left-handed swing that is already big on contact and should grow into more and more power.  Paino hit .435 with 35 RBI for Roy Ketcham HS as a junior and is signed with Mississippi, where he originally committed as a freshman.

3B – Justice De Jong (Jr., Poly Prep Country Day, N.Y.)

DeJong is a three-time Perfect Game Select Festival participant (2020-22) and one of the top power threats in the 2025 class nationally.  The 6-foot-3, 210-pound right-handed hitter is a career .449-15-166 hitter in 157 PG tournament games, with three of those home runs coming in the 2023 season.  De Jong also has a big arm that will be an asset at third base defensively and has touched 90 mph off the mound.  He is committed to Duke.

OF – Sam Miller (Sr., Fairport HS, N.Y.)

Miller may be the most tooled up outfielder in the Northeast Region, as the 6-foot-2, 180-pound athlete has run a 6.47 and thrown up to 96 mph from the outfield and in the upper 80’s from the mound.  He hit .493-3-28 as a junior at Fairport HS while also posting a 1.18 ERA on the mound.  He is signed with Binghamton.

OF – Griffin Crain (Sr., Bishop Hendricken HS, R.I.)

Crain is a versatile performer for the perennial powerhouse Bishop Hendricken team, doubling as a hard-hitting outfielder and a talented left-handed pitcher on the mound, with his best tool being his left-handed bat.  He is signed with Louisville.

OF – Carter Bentley (Jr., The Rivers HS, Mass)

Bentley is a 6-foot-2, 190-athlete who excels all over the baseball fields and also plays three sports in high school.  The Virginia Tech commit ran a 6.70 sixty at the 2023 PG Junior National Showcase while also throwing 93 mph from the outfield and 91 mph from the infield.  Bentley also has potential as a two-way prospect, topping out at 88 mph with a low 70’s curveball.

RHP – Miguel Sime Jr (Jr., Poly Prep Country Day, N.Y.)

Sime announced himself to the baseball world at the 2023 WWBA World Championships when he topped out at 99 mph during an inning of work.  He looks the part of the power pitcher, with a big and strong 6-foot-3, 235-pound build and is both young for the 2025 class and has a very short pitching resume and thus a fresh arm.  Sime is committed to Louisiana State and is ranked 20th nationally in the 2025 PG player rankings.

LHP - Anaiscio Ortiz (So., Richmond Hill HS, N.Y.)

Ortiz is the only sophomore on the Northeast All-Region team and as one of the more projectable pitchers in the 2026 class, is likely to be a repeat for the next two years.  The long-limbed 6-foot-1 southpaw was a 2023 Perfect Game Select Festival participant, where he worked in the 87-89 mph range with a nasty swing and miss slider.  That slider was one of the reasons that Ortiz, who is also a quality outfield prospect, was able to strike out 48 hitters in 27 PG innings in 2023.

RHP - Mavrick Rizy (Sr., Worcester Academy, Mass.)

Rizy stands out for his long limbed 6-foot-9, 235-pound build but is also notable due to outstanding control for a young pitcher, let alone an especially tall one.  The future LSU Tiger generally works in the low 90’s with his fastball and has topped out at 94 mph while also throwing a sweeping upper 70’s slider that is a very effective pitch for him.  Rizy went 5-1, 0.95 in 37 innings as a junior last spring, striking out 67 hitters and only allowing 10 hits.

RHP – Gavin Lyons (Sr., Hamden Hall HS, Conn.)

Lyons dominated no matter what level he was throwing against in 2023.  He first went 8-0, 0.62 with 82 strikeouts and only 18 walks allowed in 56 innings for Hamden Hall HS in the spring, then striking out 40 hitters versus only 7 walks in 26 innings in PG tournament play.  Lyons was also one of the rare pitchers to throw a complete game at the WWBA World Championships while pitching for the Langley Blaze.  The 6-foot-2, 195-pound right-hander has topped out at 94 mph but more a upper 80’s/low 90’s thrower now to go with a nice slider.  He is signed with Texas.

RHP –  Michael Yeager (Sr., Brunswick HS, Conn.)

Yeager is a strong bodied 6-foot-3, 205-pound right-hander with a starter’s mix of pitches on the mound and the ability to fill up the strike zone.  He works in the 88-91 mph range with his fastball to go with slider and an outstanding change up that is often his go to pitch.  Yeager is signed with Virginia.

UT – Aiden O'Connell (Sr., Bedford HS, N.H.) 

O’Connell dominated on both sides of the ball both in HS and on the PG circuit last summer/fall.  He went 6-1 with 65 strikeouts in 33 innings at Beford HS and also hit .453 with 4 home runs, then came back and was named Most Valuable Pitcher at two of the four tournaments he competed in, while also making three All-Tournament teams as a hitter.  On the mound, O’Connell works in the 88-91 mph range with outstanding feel for manipulating his breaking ball velocity and shape.  He is signed with Vanderbilt.

Northeast Region Top Tools

Best Hitter for Average: Owen Paino (Sr., Roy Ketcham HS, N.Y.)

Paino’s left-handed swing passes the visual test as only left-handed swingers can and it has proven to be effective against the top pitchers in the country.

Best Hitter for Power: Gabriel Tirado (Sr., The Loomis Chaffee School, Conn.)

Paino may eventually exceed Tirado in the power category but his present swing is more geared for solid gap to gap contact.  Tirado has the kind of approach and strength that stands out in batting practice and home run derby’s and plays well in games.

Best Runner: Sam Miller (Sr., Fairport HS, N.Y.)

The Northeast Region isn’t full of speed players, so Miller really stands out in this category with his 6.47 sixty speed.

Best Defensive Catcher: Matt Conte (Sr., Dexter Southfield HS, Mass.)

Conte’s combination of raw arm strength and overall athleticism give him all the tools to be successful on defense.  He will have to be a defensive standout to earn immediate playing time at Wake Forest if they continue to stack their pitching staff with future first rounders.

Best Defensive Infielder: Owen Paino (Sr., Roy Ketcham HS, N.Y.)

Paino’s smooth and athletic swing carry over to defense, where the best way to describe him is in the same terms, smooth and athletic.  There is plenty of arm strength there, too.

Best Defensive Outfielder: Sam Miller (Sr., Fairport HS, N.Y.)

The combination of 6.47 speed, a 96 mph throwing arm and Miller’s rangy athleticism profile him as an easy plus center field defender in the future.

Best Defensive Arm: Justice De Jong (Jr., Poly Prep Country Day, N.Y.)

There seem to be plenty of strong positional arms in the Northeast this year but this might be De Jong’s category for the this and next year, as the big right-handed hitter has classic third base tools defensively, which obviously includes a big arm across the diamond.

Best Fastball: Miguel Sime Jr (Jr., Poly Prep Country Day, N.Y.)

Sime hasn’t shown that he can maintain the upper 90’s fastball he showed in Jupiter and seeing what happens when he gets stretched out this spring and summer will be interesting.  He throws from an extended ¾’s arm slot with a cross fire landing out front and gets his velocity from his strong hips and lower half.

Best Off-Speed Stuff: Anaiscio Ortiz (So., Richmond Hill HS, N.Y.)

Ortiz’s slider is the single best off-speed pitch in the Region and has a chance to develop into one of the best in the country by the time he’s a senior.  It comes from an extended ¾’s arm slot and is tunneled very well with his fastball.

Best Pitchability: Gavin Lyons (Sr., Hamden Hall HS, Conn.)

Lyons ability to work deep into games and throw strikes with multiple pitches puts him ahead of many of his age peers and gives him a good chance to be successful right away at Texas.

Best Multi-Sport Athlete: Griffin Crain (Sr., Bishop Hendricken HS, R.I.)

Crain is the captain of the three-time Bishop Hendricken High School hockey team and was named the MVP of the state championships while scoring 15 goals and registering 11 assists on the season.

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