MD/DE Scout Blog: Arundel at Severna Park

Jamie Naill Jr
Maryland Scouting Director


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It was yet another beautiful day for baseball across the Old Line State, and I was out to see two premier programs in Arundel and Severna Park lock horns at Joe Cannon Stadium. With an abundance of uncommitted talent on both sides, I dive into some names to circle below. 

Arundel threatened in the top of the first, as Senior JJ Smith doubled with one out, followed by back to back hit by pitches to load the bases. Junior outfielder Dominic Wilder stepped to the plate and lined one right at Sophomore Charlie Hartman in center field who came up and gunned down the runner at home for an inning ending double play. Severna Park didn't waste anytime, scoring two in the bottom of the first, led by two RBI singles off the bats of Seniors Seamus Patenaude (Shenandoah) and Brooks Harris and one in the 2nd from an RBI single by Junior infielder Nicholas DiNunzio to take an early 3-0 lead. Uncommitted backstop Nelson Grajales-Vazquez got Arundel on the board in the 3rd with an RBI single, only for Severna Park to answer with a three spot in the bottom half, highlighted by a two RBI triple off the bat of Matt Fleisher. Courtesy of a few hit by pitches, wild pitches and an RBI single off the bat of JJ Smith, Arundel scored five in the 4th to tie the score at 6 a piece. Harris and Senior Ethan Rodriguez answered for Severna Park with two, two RBI knocks to take the lead 10-6, followed by an RBI single by Michael Carparelli to push the lead to 11-6. That's all the run support the Falcons would need, as they turned the ball over to Junior Nathan Murphy (George Washington) who slammed the door, working 2.1 innings out of the 'pen, giving up no hits and striking out six. Severna Park ended up winning the contest 16-6. 





Nelson Natanael Grajales - Vazquez C / 3B / Arundel, MD / 2023

A player who has opened my eyes, especially over the offseason has been the uncommitted Senior backstop. Physicality and athleticism in the 6-foot, 190 pound frame, Grajales-Vazquez moves well behind the plate with an accurate arm on throws to the bag. Arm strength needs to improve slightly, however the actions are clean and I like the leadership quality behind the dish. At the plate, it's an athletic setup with a smooth, controlled back load and some explosion through contact. A more middle of the field approach, Grajales-Vazquez has shown the ability to get the barrel to tough inside fastballs and showcase his strength to the pull side. The awareness for the barrel is present and the contact rate is above average. 


Chris Ricks OF / Arundel, MD / 2023

If you need an uncommitted outfielder with a ton of energy and speed, Ricks is your guy. A high octane speedster that impacts the game in all facets, Ricks has stolen base prowess and and utilizes his speed to cover a ton of ground in the outfield. At the plate, the approach is to the middle of the field, showcasing the ability to create occasional lift to the gaps with some pop that will surprise you. The hands work quick out of a balanced setup. utilizing some torque in the hips.  


Severna Park


Angel Santiago-Cruz SS / RHP / Severna Park HS, MD / 2024

One of, if not the top uncommitted two-ways in the state, Santiago-Cruz showcased the hit tool on Wednesday night, notching two backside doubles and going 4-for-5 in total. The frame is strong at 6-foot-2, 205 pounds with athletic actions and still plenty of room to fill out. At the plate, the hands showcase occasional twitch and explode through the zone consistently with a slightly uphill path. The ability to cover the whole plate, and hit for strength to the opposite field stands out, and he continuously showcases the ability to backspin line drives to right-center field. The feet are active up the middle and moves well for the size with plus arm strength that should keep him on the left side of the infield at the next level. 


Ethan Rodriguez C / RHP / Severna Park, MD / 2023

I've seen Rodriguez twice this Spring, and the plate presence and feel for the barrel has impressed me each time. Hitting out of a crouched, balanced stance, the hands work in rhythm with a simple, limited back load. A slightly uphill path to contact, the approach is to the middle with the ability to spray line drives to all fields. I really like the way the hands stay compact, keeping them inside the ball, allowing for more control of the barrel. Finished the game 2-for-4 with two RBI. 


Nathan Murphy LHP / 1B / Severna Park, MD / 2024

In my first extended look at Murphy, it was truly impressive how he was able to control the pace of the game on the bump, working 2.1 innings out of the 'pen, racking up six strikeouts with no hits allowed. A short side-step delivery, the arm action is quick out of close to an over the top slot with some deception. The fastball worked both sides of the plate with extended feel to the glove side at 85-87 mph, touching 88 mph once. Worked predominately fastballs on the night, but did mix in a few 1/7 breakers that showed tight, shorter shape at 75-76 mph. An impressive arm with a ton of intent that pounds the zone and attacks hitters to the tune of a 65% strike percentage.