Fall Scrimmage Notes: Santa Rosa Rebels v Petalocos

Blaine Clemmens
Northern California Director of Scouting

On a beautiful fall day, players who attend Cardinal Newman (Santa Rosa, CA) and Casa Grande HS (Petaluma, CA) squared off in a scrimmage at Cardinal Newman HS. They were playing in a fall league game under the banner of a couple of local club teams, the Santa Rosa Rebels (Cardinal Newman) and the Petalocos (Casa Grande). In this game it was the players from Newman who grabbed all of my attention.

In this scrimmage there were three players who have already verbally committed to local programs Cal and UC Davis. 2021 P/SS Carson Crawford (arm plays at SS, have seen best of him on the mound) of CNHS and 2020 C Cole Santander (arm and power potential are his best tools) of CGHS have both verballed to Cal, while 2019 SS Joe Lampe (L/R, good speed, quick bat, good arm) of of CGHS has committed to UC Davis. Crawford Each of them have shown talents to earn their opportunities so the focus of deeper looks will be on other players who stood out during the two games. For more on them, click their names and you can see previous reports.

The player who stood out most brightly to me this day was 2019 2nd baseman Will Larson of Cardinal Newman. He's got that high-waisted and athletic body type that immediately draws attention, then he banged two balls during the game. The swing and swing mechanics, along with his hand speed and strength are all strong attributes. If he shows that he can turn his athleticism into good defensive abilities and show consistency with the bat in the spring, then this is a player with a chance to have a breakout senior season.

Junior RF/1B/3B Drew Lombardi of Cardinal Newman is another player poised for a breakout spring. He's also athletically put together and showed strong glimpses of having offensive tools to impact the game. He's got pop to the opposite field and speed to pressure a defense and be a force on the bases. Consistency in his hitting approach while staying disciplined to use the whole field and not get big will be keys. He plays with energy and his defensive versatility was impressive, with an arm that played from RF and 3rd base and showing good feet and actions around the bag at 1st.

Lombardi's younger brother, 2021 MIF Aidan Lombardi, is a young player to take note of. He's an aggressive young player and like his older brother, he likes to play and his energy stands out. He will have to refine his hitting approach and understand his strengths (hand speed, aggressivness, barrel awareness) in order to find consistent success but he's got hitting tools. Defensively he profiles as a 2nd baseman.

Though his stuff will have to trend up pretty significantly to get 4-year college attention, 2020 RHP Gianni Cavallo of Newman DOES have feel and pitchability. His ability to locate the fastball and mix in his curveball and change-up were very impressive. Too often we are only enamored or intrigued by harder throwers and HOPE they develop feel and pitchability and secondary pitches. It's also good to know of kids who can pitch. If the velocity develops, that's easy to determine.

A few of the expected top contributors and returning varsity players for Cardinal Newman were not present; 2019 RHP Sean Flowers (Nevada commit) was in Arizona, 2021 OF/C Shane Moran is playing football (he's a LHH and also a standout running back), and 2020 RHP Matthew McMahon, who earned innings as a sophomore last season. Another name to note for Cardinal Newman is 2019 OF/RHP Nick George, a long and lanky athlete who just might have the highest athletic ceiling on the team. He's a centerfielder with range and good speed.

The second game featured freshmen/sophomores from both programs, including two pitchers of note, both from Cardinal Newman. 2021 LHP Daniel Moorehead has a good arm, clean arm action and good life and movement on the fastball that was up to 80 mph. 2022 RHP Evan Adams, who attended our Northern California Underclass Games, started the game and once again showed a polished delivery and good arm action, with some riding life on the fastball. In a late fall season game, a freshman up to 80 mph was good to see.