High School | Rankings | 5/28/2020

Top 15 Righthanded Pitchers: 2022 & 2023

Jheremy Brown        
Photo: Dylan Lesko (Perfect Game)

Top 15 Righthanded Pitchers 2020 & 2021

Each week Jered Goodwin and Jheremy Brown will break down the top nationally ranked prospects at each position in the 2020-2023 classes, but there’s a twist. Instead of keeping them ranked within their specific classes as you'd find in the most updated national rankings, we will blend the top 2020s and 2021s into a top 15 list and then do the same with the 2022s and 2023s to see where they stack up against one another putting grad year aside. The 2020/2021 list will always be the first release, followed by the 2022/2023 with a different breakdown amongst positions weekly and this week we look at a talented crop of righthanded pitchers. 

1. Dylan Lesko
Put Lesko in any of the prep classes right now and he’d still rank amongst the best and that’s not to take away from anybody, but rather a testament to just how advanced the stuff and feel is for the uncommitted righthander. A primary catcher leading into his 14u summer, Lesko took off on the mound throughout the national circuit and hasn’t slowed since, winning the 14u Pitcher of the Year before claiming the No. 1 spot in the class which he has yet to relinquish. At 6-3, 170 pounds the physical projection is near endless for Lesko though his arsenal can already send the best of opposing hitters back to the dugout unsuccessfully. His fastball will sit comfortably in the low 90s throughout the course of a start, bumping upwards of 94 mph, but what’s more impressive is the young righthander’s ability to work to either side of the plate with intent, maintaining the life of the pitch to either side. The delivery is fluid and athletic for Lesko, who generates the velocity with ease, and he’s begun to implement a slider into this arsenal which shows distinctly different shape from his curveball. The real difference maker though is the changeup, an already advanced pitch that shows big downer, fading action with a replicate release in the upper 70s to low 80s. 

2. Ethan Robinson
Robinson’s name quickly circulated through the baseball world last summer as he was popping 90 mph on the radar gun during the early spring despite still being in his eighth grade spring. The Vanderbilt commit checks nearly every box you want in a young pitching prospect while still possessing near limitless projection; long & lean 6-4 frame-check, fluid mechanics with an easy delivery-check, feel for spin and shows a changeup-check. Neither his length nor his age get in the way of his mechanical operation as he shows a fluid set of mechanics, repeating well pitch-to-pitch with big extension out front which aids in his effective velocity. He does a nice job of maintaining his velocity through the duration of an outing -and there’s undoubtedly more on the way- generating life to his arm side to either half of the plate. His breaking ball will continue to firm up, but he already shows comfort spinning the ball and generating late action on the pitch with nice depth. Robinson rounds out the arsenal with a changeup in the low 70s, a pitch he’ll seldom throw but has proper action on it. Already ranked No. 3 in the class of 2022, don’t be surprised when the radar gun starts showing some big numbers and it’ll be sooner rather than later. 

3. Ian Ritchie Jr
Every time Ritchie toes the rubber at a Perfect Game event he appears to make yet another jump and the scary part is that his best days on the mound are still ahead of him. A loose and athletic 6-2, 175 pound righthander out of Washington, Ritchie has already committed to nearby Oregon State though if the projection continues to come to fruition, he’ll have a decision to make come June of 2022. It’s big time arm speed for the future Beaver as he has yet to scratch his physical ceiling yet has already seen his fastball bump 94 mph with more in the tank. The velocity stands out as he’ll sit in the 89-92 mph range but the overall riding life through the zone and to his arm side are even more noteworthy as the ball appears to jump on hitters the moment it leaves his hand. It’s the changeup that’s the go to off speed pitch for Ritchie right now and rightfully so given the late diving life he’s able to generate on the upper 70s pitch, showing comfort to throw it to batters of either handedness. His curveball continues to make strides and serves as a third pitch, landing for strikes though the fastball/changeup is the combo he prefers. 

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