Tournaments | Story | 10/15/2019

Freshman World Day 4 Scout Notes

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Photo: Aidan Miller (Perfect Game)

2019 WWBA Freshman World Championship: Event Page | Daily Leaders
Scout Notes: 
Days 1-2 | Day 3

It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that outfielder and righthanded pitcher Aidan Miller (2023, Trinity, Fla.) performed in a two-way capacity in a big way on the big stage, taking the mound for Top Tier in the championship game. Athletically built at 6-foot-1, 175-pounds, Miller certainly passes the eye test for a high-end prospect on the mound as the turned in a complete game effort while maintaining his velocity and feel for his arsenal throughout.

His delivery is a rather simple simple one, showing rhythm and balance while driving down the mound and filling the zone from his first pitch to the last, maintaining the same fast arm stroke as well. Within the span of the outing the uncommitted Miller sat rather comfortably in 85-87 mph range early, bumping 88s throughout the game and projects for another couple jumps moving forward. The fastball offers nice running life to his arm side and he worked in full attack mode with the pitch, filling the zone while locating to either side of the plate with intent, punching out eight. He didn’t have to stray from his fastball but was effective in doing so when he did, mixing in both a late diving changeup at 81 mph and an 11-to-5 shaped curveball with depth in the low-70s. He's currently ranked the No. 2 player in the country as a position prospect but given his performance Monday you'd believe the lofty ranking was for his talents on the mound.

Stone Russell (2023, Bradenton, Fla.) turned heads in semifinal action on Monday, driving a ball to the left-center field gap in what was one of the louder swings of the day. Russell has a physical frame at 6-foot, 190-pounds and shows power to the pull side that will only continue to improve as the frame matures. Defensively, Russell played a clean shortstop on Monday, showing an ability to play through the ball well and make clean throws across the diamond on the run. The Florida commit shows the athleticism to make accurate throws from multiple slots and the frame projects from both left-side spots on the infield. Ranked as the No. 126 player in the 2023 class, Russell should continue to produce both offensively and defensively as his high school career unfolds.

One of the younger arms in attendance this weekend, Anthony Gualemi (2024, New Port Richey, Fla.) impressed on the mound Monday morning. The righthander allowed just one hit over 2 2/3 innings of work, striking out three and dominating the strike zone with ease. Gualemi pitched in the low-80s with a lively fastball on Monday, showing excellent command to both edges and generating natural run to the arm side. He mixed with an upper-60s breaking ball and showed an advanced ability to pitch with a gameplan to keep hitters off balance. Gualemi has a long and lanky frame with the ability to get over his front side before attacking down in the zone. Gualemi is definitely a name to follow in the future.

Zach Wadas (2023 Phoenix, Ariz.) continued to swing the stick in a loud way. During the semifinal game, Wadas took a fastball and hammered it off the right field wall. The big lefthanded hitter has natural loft to his swing and he combined that with physical strength. Although his team ended up falling short, he made the next step in the box and projects well as a power hitting first baseman moving forward.

2019 14u PG Select Festival participant Colton Wombles (2023 Salem, Ala.) proved his high ranking as he helped push his Top Tier Roos squad to a championship Monday afternoon. He has a strong, stocky build and he mashed baseballs all weekend. The righthanded hitter opened up the semifinal game with a double down the left field line to lead off the inning, scoring shortly after. He would later go on to catch the championship game proving to be an asset behind the dish. He displayed a great feel for the plate as he stole strikes on the corners and blocked up just about everything for eventual event MVP Aidan Miller, who threw a complete game to pick up the win. The No. 28 overall prospect in the 2023 class impressed and will be someone to watch as his career unfolds.

Uncommitted prospect Cristofer Walley (2023 Inverness, Fla.) had a great weekend and topped off his performance with a great championship Monday. The lefthanded hitter has a physical build with a very strong lower half and broad shoulders. Walley barreled up baseballs all weekend making loud contact throughout the duration of the event against a plethora of talented arms. During the championship game he hammered a triple into the right-center gap and cruised around the bases, eventually crossing home plate. He will be someone to keep an eye on in the future as he projects as a big bat in the lineup with decent speed given his large frame.

Connor Crisp (2023, Locust Grove, Ga.) put forth a stellar performance in the semifinal round that would eventually land him the MV-Pitcher award following the championship game. He tossed five innings, allowing just one unearned run, scattering a walk and three hits while striking out eight. The young, lean righthander works a clean delivery with an over-the-top slot, extending well to the plate and working to both sides of the plate. Crisp jumped around in velocity later in the outing but worked 86-88 mph in the first before settling into 84-88 mph and bumping a 90. He showed advanced feel to spin an upper-70s slider with short, tight break while mixing in a straight, yet deceptive changeup at right around 80 mph. There is a lot to like from a pure arm talent standpoint and he will continue to be an intriguing follow given he just stepped foot on a high school campus.

Wesley Mendes (2023, Tampa, Fla.) was solid for the eventual champion Top Tier Roos in the semifinal round as he tossed over four innings, allowing just one earned run and picking up nine strikeouts along the way. The 6-foot lefthander passes the eye test mechanically with a very clean and balanced delivery that allows him to repeat well. The arm is very loose with ease to the release that allows him to work strongly to all four quadrants. The fastball showed running life to it as he worked up to 85 mph, settling in the 82-84 range. The feel to spin is good at present as he flashed a short, tight curveball at 70 mph with plenty of projection to being a swing-and-miss pitch down the line.

Tyler Smith (2023, Pittsburgh, Pa.) opposed Mendes and was stronger than what the final box score showed. Also a lean 6-foot lefthander, Smith has plenty of projection long-term with the way the frame stands at present. Not lighting up the radar gun in quite the same way, he held solid at 79-82 mph, but presented heavy arm-side sink to the fastball that created a great deal of swing-and-miss against a talented Top Tier lineup. The arm has some definite whippiness to it and is long but clean coming through a high three-quarters slot. He also flashed occasional feel to spin a loose mid- to upper-60s curveball that generated weak contact when landed. There is a lot to like here from a projection standpoint and Smith should be an intriguing follow from the northeast as he continues to develop.

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