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Tournaments  | Story  | 9/24/2019

Northeast Qualifier Scout Notes

Photo: Jovan Gill (Perfect Game)

2019 WWBA Northeast Qualifier: Event Page

The Northeast Qualifier, held on Staten Island as well as some sites in New Jersey, played host to many of the top programs and players in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions this past weekend. The winner of the event, Northeast Pride Scout Team, earned a bid to the WWBA World Championship in mid-October, held in Jupiter, Fla.—unquestionably the most prominent amateur baseball tournament on the travel ball circuit.

FTB Mid-Atlantic came into the weekend as one of the favorites to potentially win the event, and while they fell short in the second round of the playoffs, still put their talent on display to be sure. Nate Blasick (2020, Halifax, Pa.) hit in the middle of the FTB lineup all weekend long and was outstanding, posting a 1.571 OPS with two homers and five walks to his credit. The West Virginia commit is a talented two-way prospect, though he didn’t throw this weekend. A lefthanded hitter with a good combination of strength and bat speed, Blasick’s potential offensive impact at the next level is vast, as he showed the ability to get the barrel out consistently, match plane well, and drive the ball into the air. There’s plenty of raw power there right now and he projects for even more, giving West Virginia a potential offensive building block in their 2020 recruiting class.

Luke Goodyear (2020, Camp Hill, Pa.) got the start in FTB’s opening-round win, pitching three scoreless innings in a game FTB ended early via the run rule, 16-0. A slender, athletically built lefthander, Goodyear is committed to Gardner-Webb and while he has quality upside as a starter at the college level, he does a lot of things right now that could allow for him to be an immediate impact bullpen piece at the next level. He worked up to 84 mph with his fastball, generating excellent angle to the plate from an extended three-quarters slot, which, when combined with the deception and life on the pitch as well, allows for that fastball to play up in effectiveness beyond the raw velocity. He worked in a slurvy breaking ball as well that has some bite to the break, and he essentially was able to pitch on cruise control from the get-go given what FTB did offensively, pounding the zone and getting quick outs.

In a walk-off of sorts, Travis Honeyman (2020, Massapequa, N.Y.) hit a grand slam in the bottom of the third inning for FTB. It made the score 16-0, which triggered the “15 after 3” run-rule, essentially walking off the game for FTB and moving them to 1-0 in pool play at the time. Honeyman, who is committed to play at Boston College, had a quieter weekend overall but has proven himself through the course of his prep career to be a very good offensive prospect who can do damage from the right side, and projects to potentially hit in the middle of head coach Mike Gambino’s lineup at BC once his college career gets underway.

A moderately under-the-radar player from Vermont, UConn commit Owen Kellington (2021, Plainfield, Vt.) was outstanding for the NH River Bandits in their matchup with the Tri State Arsenal, a game the Arsenal won 1-0. Kellington went six shutout innings, allowing just two walks and a hit while punching out 10. A long, lean righthander, Kellington has significant projection remaining on his frame, and the ease of his operation along with the present arm speed he possesses makes him a high follow in the Northeast region looking a ways ahead to the 2021 draft. He creates big plane to the plate from a high slot, working 84-87 mph with his fastball, generating good arm side life in addition to that plane and projecting to sit in the 90s sooner rather than later. The curveball is a good pitch as well, thrown with 12-to-6 to 11-to-5 shape and working really well out of that higher slot, thrown in the low- to mid-70s with power spin and good depth. UConn has a history of developing pitchers who can spin the baseball into high-round picks, and Kellington could be the next in that line if he continues along his current developmental trajectory.

US Elite Underclass National made a quality run through bracket play and into the playoffs in this event, with Boston College commit Sean Hard (2021, Mahwah, N.J.) getting the ball in game one and throwing well. Hard went five innings in this start, allowing just one run on three hits while striking out eight, though he did walk five. He ran his fastball up to 88 mph with a good bit of arm side life, sitting in the mid-80s throughout and showing the ability to both miss bats and elicit weak contact with the heater. His breaking ball is a slurvy pitch with 10-to-4 shape, throwing mostly in the 67-72 mph range with some bite to it. He has feel to spin the ball and missed bats with the pitch, and also showed the ability to land it for strikes when necessary.

Alexander Meckley (2021, Gettysburg, Pa.) closed it out for US Elite, and the physically built righthander showed some things to like to be sure, even if he did give up some runs over the course of his bullpen outings through the weekend. He’s built well with good strength throughout, working in the mid-80s with his fastball, peaking at 86 mph. He does a solid job of throwing strikes, though working middle-middle a bit too much, throwing his curveball for strikes at times as well.

A PG National participant earlier this summer, Kenneth Levari (2020, Vineland, N.J.) had a good weekend with the bat, and is a very high-end two-way prospect, though he didn’t throw in this event. A lefthanded hitter with quality bat speed and hands that work through the swing, Levari OPS’d 1.178 over the course of the tournament with all of his hits coming for extra bases. An Old Dominion commitment, Levari has the athleticism and arm strength to stick in the middle infield and has shown that he has quality hitting tools, which, combined with his ability to run his fastball up into the mid-90s on the mound certainly gives him high-level upside, and he should be an immediate impact both in the field and out of the bullpen for ODU right away next spring.

TJ Wachter (2021, Shoreham, N.Y.) had a good weekend overall as a two-way talent who is committed to Fordham. A big, physical righthanded pitcher and hitter, Wachter impacted some balls violently this weekend with the bat, including a pull-side bomb and a double that went way up the right-center field gap. His physical strength and size stand out right away, and he brings the barrel around with intent to do serious damage. He’s primarily a righthanded pitcher and came on in relief in the semifinals on Monday morning, running his fastball into the mid-80s with excellent sink and a good amount of strikes, showing the ability to miss bats both up and down in the zone and really pound the zone with the pitch. He’s definitely an intriguing follow in the Northeast given the power of his arm and bat.

Coming off of an East Coast Pro performance where he certainly opened eyes in the scouting industry, Alex Galvan (2020, Brielle, N.J.) threw well here in the Northeast Qualifier, though he did take the loss. A righthander with fantastic size and plenty of projection remaining, Galvan came out of the gate working in the 88-91 mph range with his fastball, jumping out of his hand and showing good ride up in the zone, but the fastball command in this outing was lagging a little bit, leading to several walks and some hittable fastballs, though he did strike out 11 in six innings while not allowing an earned run. He gets downhill well over a closed stride, showcasing his extension and torso flexibility in the process, creating good plane to the plate from a high three quarters slot. The breaking ball was inconsistent but flashed solid-average, thrown mostly in the mid- to upper-70s with good bite to it. There’s significant upside here for the Louisville commit, given the size, projection and present stuff, making him one of the highest follows in the Northeast looking towards the draft in June.

One of the more fascinating players in attendance was Adrian Siravo (2020, Gilmanton, N.H.), who played one of best individual games this evaluator has seen this year on Saturday against FTB Mid-Atlantic. Primarily a righthanded pitcher, Siravo ran his fastball up to 93 mph with steep, steep plane to the bottom of the zone, threw a fair bit of strikes, and missed bats with both a curveball and slider en route to a 10-strikeout, six-shutout-inning performance. A two-way player committed to UConn, Siravo made his presence felt both offensively and defensively as well in addition to his loud outing on the mound. Leading off for the NH River Bandits, Siravo hit a missile of a triple off the center field wall and picked up a single as well to give him two hits on the day, then went out to center field to play defense in the seventh inning, ending the game by making a routine catch and then absolutely hosing a tagged-up runner trying to advance to third base. It’s hard to make this game look easy, but Siravo certainly did that in all three phases of the game in this one.

An outfielder committed to Notre Dame, Tj Williams (2020, Germantown, Md.), Williams had a very good weekend leading off for FTB Mid-Atlantic, hitting a cool .600 with an OPS of 1.614. An athletically built righthanded hitter, Williams does everything pretty well, including showing solid speed and routes in the outfield, where he projects to play center field at the collegiate level. Offensively, he has a compact, direct stroke that produces solid average bat speed, handling the bat well and showing the ability to get barrel on pitches all over the zone. There’s not a ton of home run level pop yet, though there’s a good bit of projection remaining on the body and he’s shown the ability to drive the ball up the gaps, which are certainly building blocks potentially portending to quality raw power in the future.

FTB’s bullpen was very good in this one, starting with Dominic Velazquez (2020, Dover, Del.), a Delaware State commit. Velazquez came on in relief and threw 1 1/3 innings, needing only 13 pitches to strike out three. He ran his fastball up to 89 mph with steep plane from a high three-quarters slot, pounding the zone with the pitch and really just attacking hitters, daring them to hit his fastball in the strike zone. He was joined in bullpen domination by Cole Reynolds (2020, Clayton, Del.), an Elon commit who also punched out three in his inning of work, needing just 14 pitches to do so. A big, physical lefty, Stallings ran his fastball up to 89 mph and was dominant with it in the zone, showing feel for a firm curveball as well.

Another PG National participant who fared well this weekend was Virginia commit Rece Ritchey (2020, Huntingdon, Pa.), a long-limbed lefthanded pitcher with serious upside. Ritchey ran his fastball up to 88 mph in this one, creating a ton of angle and plane from a very high three quarters slot. There’s some restriction to the operation in his lower half, including a moderately short closed stride that is often difficult to get over cleanly, but Ritchey shows the ability to throw a fair amount of strikes. There’s feel for his curveball there as well, thrown in the low-70s with 1-to-7 shape and good depth, and he possesses outstanding upside as he continues to get stronger and develop overall.

Jovan Gill (2020, Fort Myers, Fla.) started FTB’s opening round playoff game on Sunday morning, punching out three in his lone inning of work, then got pulled as FTB built a 7-0 lead in order to pitch him in their second playoff game. A talented two-way player committed to Stetson, Gill has the high-level pitchability and stuff that could allow him to pitch on the weekend right away as a freshman, and his lefthanded swing and raw power give him the ability to also hit for the Hatters. He runs his fastball up to 90-91 mph, preferring to throw that at the top of the zone, while sitting more 85-88 mph right now down in the zone with heavy sink. He has the whole kitchen sink at his disposal in terms of off-speed stuff, including a curveball with 11-to-5 shape and good depth, a slider that has good bite to the tilt, a power changeup that he can get righthanded hitters to swing over the top of as it dives in below their knees, and a knuckleball that he can throw for strikes. He varies his delivery looks and tempos and consistently keeps hitters off balance, pitching backwards often and showing the ability to throw any of the aforementioned pitches for strikes in pretty much any count or situation. There’s significant raw power from the left side of the plate to his profile as well, giving him coveted two-way upside at the collegiate level.

GS Surge Team Akadema had a good weekend, going 4-1 and advancing deep into the playoffs. In their first playoff game Sunday morning, they took down Staten Island Orioles Scout 5-2, with Luis Dela Cruz (2021, Jersey City, N.J.) doing pretty much all of the heavy lifting offensively. Dela Cruz is a physical, strongly-built righthanded-hitting catcher, who picked up a pair of hits, both of them home runs, including a walk-off bomb in the bottom of the seventh inning in what was a tie game. We’ve talked about great individual performances throughout this recap so far, and he certainly fits that bill, as he was responsible for all of the Surge runs in this one. The power is obvious, brought about by quality bat speed and strength with a swing plane that is designed to get the ball into the air, and when he gets one square, it jumps.

The East Coast Sandhogs made a playoff run as well, winning in the first round before bowing out, with Hank Bearden (2020, Rocky Face, Ga.) picking up the win in relief. Bearden, a University of Georgia commit, allowed two runs over four frames out of the bullpen, picking up five strikeouts along the way. A projectable righthander, Bearden has a full arsenal of pitches to go along with solid-average arm speed and good control of his arsenal. The fastball sat mid-80s, touching 88 mph a few times early on, and he likes to run the fastball up and in on righthanded hitters to great effect, then spins the ball away to get swings-and-misses. This in/out-up/down command with several pitches allows him to keep hitters off balance, even if the stuff itself isn’t overpowering yet. That ability to spin the baseball should give him the ability to pitch for UGA right away out of the bullpen as a freshman, though he has some starter traits that could eventually make him a weekend guy for the Bulldogs long term.

The East Coast Lumberjacks ended FTB Mid-Atlantic’s playoff run on Sunday morning, winning a very entertaining contest 3-2. Braedin Hunt (2020, Old Bridge, N.J.) got the start and the win, allowing just a pair of unearned runs in six frames, striking out six along the way. He’s a physical, good-sized righthanded pitcher with good build throughout, showing a good 1-2 fastball-curveball combination that projects well. He ran his fastball up to 89 mph, generating steep plane to the bottom of the zone from a high three quarters slot, with a high front side coming through his rotation and aiding in deception. He spins the ball well, with a curveball in the mid-70s that plays well out of that high slot. The best ones are thrown with 11-to-5 shape and good two-plane bite, and while the consistency of the shape of the pitch is still coming along, there’s no doubting his feel to spin the ball and the projection of that curveball to be a bat-misser long term.

One of the louder pitching performances of the weekend came from Bryce Reimer (2020, Hortonville, N.Y.), who pitched eventual champion Northeast Pride Scout Team into the quarterfinals on Sunday afternoon. He threw a complete game shutout, allowing just one hit and a pair of walks while striking out 16, just an utterly dominant performance from the lefty. A solidly built lefthander, Reimer basically was able to befuddle hitters consistently with his fastball-curveball mix, keeping hitters off balance throughout and generating well over 20 swings-and-misses, an absurd number. He ran his fastball up to 88 mph and pitched in the mid-80s consistently, creating good angle to the plate with some arm side life on the pitch as well, pounding the zone with the fastball and daring opposing hitters to beat him, which they could not. The breaking ball is a slurvier curveball, thrown in the low-mid 70s mostly on a 2-to-8 shape, landing it for strikes and showing feel for varying the look of the pitch at least moderately so. He misses bats with it but often uses it more to set up his fastball, landing the pitch for strikes and then blowing fastballs up in the zone to great effect. A Bucknell commit, Reimer was extremely impressive to say the least.

We only got a brief one-inning look at Mark Scamardella (2020, Staten Island, N.Y.) as he came on in relief for Richmond County Mid-Atlantic Select in their 9-0 win on Sunday afternoon, but that one inning look was impressive. A slenderly-built and projectable righthander, Scamardella ran his fastball up to 88 mph, sitting 85-87 mph, and showed a full arsenal in a brief look. The changeup is ahead of the breaking ball at present, thrown in the 77-78 mph range with excellent arm speed, selling the pitch as a fastball and then allowing it to dive down under the hands of righthanded hitters, where he got swing-and-miss over the top of it. He has feel for a slider as well, thrown in the mid-70s with tilt, and given his full arsenal, command, and projection; he certainly looks the part of a future starting pitcher at the Division I level.

US Elite Underclass took down Team Citius in the second round of playoff action, advancing to the quarterfinals in the process. Orlando Pena (2021, Jersey City, N.J.), a Coastal Carolina commit, struck the decisive blow in the fifth inning by launching a grand slam pull-side, which gave US Elite a lead they would not relinquish. Pena has tremendous physicality with a pro body, and that physicality plays in his swing by way of excellent strength that creates impressive raw power. There is some swing-and-miss to his offensive profile right now, but he has the ingredients to become an impact, middle-of-the-order bat at the collegiate level as he continues to develop his overall hitting acumen. The power upside here is vast to be sure.

Command eluded him a bit in his outing, but Justin Rodriguez (2021, New York, N.Y.) showed a lot to like in his relief appearance for Team Citius on Sunday afternoon. A lean, highly-projectable righthander, Rodriguez’s arm speed stands out right away and is the calling card of his profile. He ran his fastball up to 90 mph, flashing excellent arm side life on the pitch at times as well, and given the aforementioned arm speed and the projection of his body, the velocity ceiling he possesses is vast, and it’s not unrealistic to project him throwing mid-90s eventually. Rodriguez is uncommitted at this time.

Team BEAST moved onto the championship game with a win on Monday morning in the semifinals, getting an excellent start from Devin Rivera (2020, Valley Cottage, N.Y.) in the process. Rivera, a righthander committed to Villanova, scattered four hits over six shutout innings, walking no one and picking up five strikeouts. He’s built leanly at present, with plenty of projection remaining along with solid-average arm speed. He ran his fastball up to 88 mph early on, settling into the mid-80s. He gets on top and leverages the ball down in the zone consistently and does an excellent job getting over his front side, creating very good extension through his release. He has good feel to spin the baseball as well, throwing a curveball in the low-mid 70s with hammer depth and bite at times, getting several empty swings over the top of it and showing as a true bat-misser that will continue to get better and better as he gains strength on his frame.

Christopher Ewing (2020, New York, N.Y.) started at shortstop for Team BEAST and showed extremely well defensively, flashing the kind of athleticism, footwork, hands, and instincts that project to make him a high-level defender at the next level. He moves well to both sides and plays low to the ground, and the hands are soft and sure, as he showed the consistent ability to field cleanly even on bad hops, getting off a quick release with accuracy across the diamond. The arm strength itself is fringy right now, but the accuracy and the quickness of release allow for that to play up, and there’s plenty of projection for the arm strength as well. There’s feel to hit there as well, covering the plate well and showing the ability to spray line drive contact around, profiling well as a top-of-the-order bat.

Northeast Pride Scout Team ended up winning the whole thing, getting high-end pitching performances throughout the weekend. Eric Yost (2020, Ossining, N.Y.) got the ball in the title game and delivered, both on the mound and at the plate. A Northeastern commit, Yost has solid size right now with a good amount of projection remaining, though the stuff is plenty loud right now. He opened up at 89-91 mph with his fastball, sitting more in the 86-88 mph range as the game wore on, pounding the zone at a 70 percent strike clip and challenging hitters. He throws two variations of a breaking ball, more of a tilting slider look at 77 that may have just been a curveball that he got to the side of, while the true curveball was more in the mid-70s with 11-to-5 shape. There’s good bite on the pitch and he misses bats with it with relative ease, and has a present two-pitch mix along with control that should make him an immediate impact type of arm. He also helped himself at the plate, hitting a mammoth grand slam to the pull side that broke the game open and allowed him to then go to the mound and pitch with a big lead. He was named MVP of the tournament and for good reason, as evidenced by what he did to help the Pride with the title and earn a berth in Jupiter.

-Brian Sakowski

Uncommitted Jimmy Kemp (2020, Bayonne, N.J.) got pool play started in the WWBA Northeast Qualifier for Wladyka Baseball. Kemp is big, strong-bodied righthanded pitcher that comes from an over-the-top slot and uses his lower half well. He went four innings allowing one hit and one unearned run. He used a heavy fastball that sat in the low- to mid-80s, topping out at 89 mph. He showed the ability to command both edges of the plate and mixed in a slower curveball with 12-to-6 shape.

In Game 2 for Wladyka Baseball, another intriguing pitcher took the mound, PG Top 500 and Army commit Michael Ruggieri (2020, Upper Saddle River, N.J.), who generated some awkward swings in his short outing. Coming from an XL frame that created severe downhill plane, he was in the mid- to upper-80s and mixed in a hard downer curveball with 11-to-5 shape to create awkward swings-and-misses.

Notre Dame commit Matthew Bedford (2020, Staten Island, N.Y.) continued to show off an interesting two-way skillset. Playing for the Staten Island Orioles he showed a sound hitting approach by hitting to all fields. He created loud contact on a line drive single to left field and followed that up with a line drive home run in game two. Bedford, stepped onto the mound in the Orioles matchup with the Keystone Nationals and used his medium, athletic build to go five strong innings. He sat at 84-86 mph, touching 88, from a loose three-quarters arm slot that created arm-side life. Bedford flashed ability to spin a curveball with 11-to-5 shape and depth.

It was an impressive first look at Winthrop commit Caleb Martin (2020, Honesdale, Pa.) for Northeast Pride Scout Team in early morning pool play action. Martin used a slow, deliberate delivery that created heavy downhill plane from a three-quarters slot. He mixed in a hard-biting curveball at 68 mph and punched out eight hitters in his 2 2/3-inning outing.

It was exciting to get a second look at PG Top 500-ranked player and UMass-Lowell commit Michael Quigley (2020, Halifax, Mass.) as he took the mound for Garden State Surge 2020 National in their pool play matchup with MA Show 18u Select. He was able to stymie the opposing offense for six scoreless innings and recorded 11 strikeouts in doing so. Quigley used his quick-paced delivery and quick arm to create downhill plane. With an extremely athletic build and repeatable mechanics, Quigley flashed a hard, sharp curveball with 12-to-6 shape when ahead in the count.

PG Top 500 player and recent Xavier commit Ryan Rumsey (2021, Cherry Hill, N.J.) continued to display his high-level pitchability this weekend. Rumsey started off what would be a quarterfinal run for the Diamond Jacks Super 17’s with his five scoreless innings in game one of pool play action. Using his athleticism to repeat from a three-quarters slot, Rumsey was in the low- to mid-80s, creating heavy arm-side run to righthanded hitters. He struck out eight hitters by commanding his fastball and mixing in a harder breaking ball that varied in shape.

Baseball Performance Center came to the Northeast Qualifier with a talent-filled roster that ultimately ended in a playoff Round 2 loss to Team Beast. Maryland commit Ian Petrutz (2021, Mantua, N.J.) squared up baseballs all weekend. Petrutz uses an upright narrow stance with plus present bat speed to create leverage at contact. He went 5-for-8 (.625) with two doubles a triple and a home run.

High Point commit Sean Duffy (2020, Egg Harbor Township, N.J.) was very economical is his short stint on Saturday. Duffy used a long, loose arm action with good extension out front. His velocity was down a little from previous looks, sitting in the mid- to upper-80s with life through the zone after being up to 92 mph earlier this summer. Duffy mixed in a hard slider with 11-to-5 shape.

Hofstra Commit Steven Kaenzig (2020, Hammonton, N.J.) followed Duffy in BPC’s matchup with PAL Elite and showed pitch ability in his two scoreless innings. Kaenzig threw in the low- to mid-80s and used a slower breaking ball with 11-to-5 shape to garner swings-and-misses. With plenty of projection left in his long, lean frame, Kaenzig’s velocity should continue rising.

Playoff Action in the Northeast Qualifier was red hot with many notable performances and standouts. Ranked 82nd in the class of 2021 and a UVA commit, Shane Panzini (2021, Spring Lake, N.J.) was dominant in his playoff start for 9ers Baseball Club. Panzini used his big, athletic frame to create downhill angle. In a complete game one-hitter, he sat in the mid- to upper-80s, topping out at 89 mph with late exploding life through the zone while mixing in two different breaking balls that varied in shape/velocity for swings-and-misses. Panzini continues to be impressive with his ability get ahead and get strikeouts, evident by his 11 punchouts in this performance.

Stars Baseball 18u Sisk made a deep run into the quarterfinals of the Northeast Qualifier and they were led by uncommitted righthanded pitcher Jared Dingus (2020, Manassas, Va.). Dingus threw nine scoreless innings over the weekend, capped off by his complete game two-hitter in the first round of the playoffs. He used a short, compact arm stroke to pound the zone with late life to his fastball. He sat in the low- to mid-80s with plane and mixed in a sharp-biting slider that had 11-to-5 shape.

North Carolina State commit Eddie Eisert (2020, Fairfax Station, Va.) showed a legitimate two-way profile this weekend for Stars Baseball 18u Sisk. Eisert showed big-time power potential with two home runs on the weekend. He then stepped on the mound to close out Stars playoff round two matchup. Eisert used his athletic frame to create severe downhill plane from an over-the-top slot. Only using fastballs in this appearance, he sat in the mid- to upper-80s, peaking at 88, and you can see the skillset to be a potential two-way guy at the next level.

Recent Rutgers commit Max Martin (2022, Edgewater Park, N.J.) from Tri State Arsenal 2021 showed off his continued growth with a hot weekend. Martin hit .571 (8-for-14) with four doubles, a triple and six runs batted in. He looks to have added strength to his short, simple line drive stroke. This was evident by his five extra-base hits that were driven to both gaps with backspin.

US Elite Underclass National rode good pitching and timely hitting in a quarterfinal run in the Northeast Qualifier. University of Virginia commit Anthony Stephan (2021, Ridgewood, N.J.) did a lot of the work during their playoff run and he showed off his quick-twitch athleticism in hitting .462 (6-for-13) on the weekend. Stephan used his speed to swipe four bases to go along with a double and triple at the plate.

Team Citius 2020 National brought an ultra-talented roster to Staten Island this weekend and Pepperdine commit Bailey Uderitz (2020, Delray Beach, Fla.) closed out their pool-clinching matchup with FTB Mid Atlantic 2021. Uderitz showed off his ultra-projectable 6-foot-4 frame in his short stint. Coming from an over-the-top slot, he was 84-86, touching 87, with late life and plane through the zone. He mixed in a devastating curveball that flashed hard, late downer action to get strikeouts. Uderitz has a long and lean projectable frame with repeatable mechanics.

– Johnnie McAdams