SelectFest Underclass: Day 1 Notes

By TJ Hunt
 Scouting Director, New Jersey

On Saturday October 1st, Selectfest hosted its annual Underclass Showcase at JFK Iselin High School in Iselin, NJ. The showcase had some of the top underclassmen prospects in the state. Players were split into four teams and played one game each. Before each game, both teams conducted their own skills event with the 60, BP, and infield/outfield. Here is a look at some of the prospects that stood out from Day 1:

Nick Payero, RHP Monroe Twp. HS, NJ, 2019
Payero, a participant of the PBR NJ Underclass Games, sat 86-87 on this day touching 89 once. Flashed a slider at 71-72 mph and a swing and miss splitter at 75 mph. Over powered hitters with fastball and used offspeed as a nice complement. No. 12 ranked 2018 in the state, one of the top uncommitted players in the class.

Jack Leiter, RHP, Delbarton HS, NJ, 2019
Leiter has an athletic frame at 5-foot-10 165-pounds. One of the top 2019 players in the state (No. 8). Fastball sat at 85-86 at the beginning of his outing, but settled at 82-83 for the rest. Showcased a sharp slider at 73-76 mph with 11/5 depth. Also showed a 12/6 breaker at 63-65. Slider is a true swing and miss pitch. changes arm slots on 12/6 breaker, wraps wrist. Balance point is strong and athletic - falls off to first base side of mound on finish. Had some trouble with FB command at the start, but could have been due to weather conditions affecting mound/ball.

Anthony Volpe, SS, Delbarton HS, NJ, 2019
Volpe is a talented, athletic 5-foot-10 160-pound middle infielder with a lot to like. Currently No. 2 in NJ's 2019 class - and one of the top players in the country (No. 29 as of 10/1). Extremely smooth in the field - exchanges are clean and quick with throws that have carry from multiple arm slots. Offensively- starts in a tall stance, slightly opened with hands above shoulder. Very quiet in pre-pitch routine, uses a small stride to start load. Hands load down and back, hips are loose and violent. Swing is short with flat barrel path. Will occasionally rise up in finish. Doubled to the wall during gameplay High follow prospect.

Gordon Graceffo, RHP, Cranford HS, NJ, 2018
Graceffo has a strong build at 6-foot-1 175-pounds. Consistently sat at 84 and touched 86 with heavy armside run. Slider had some 11/5 depth at 69-70. Throws from true-3/4 slot, but us able to drop to low-3/4. Got multiple weak ground balls because of sink/run on fastball. Tough to hit, especially on RHH.

Matthew Rivera, C, Holy Spirit HS, NJ, 2018
Rivera, a participant of August's Future Games - is 6-foot-2 190-pounds with broad shoulders and a lean frame. Ranked No. 11 in NJ's 2018 class - one of the top uncommitted players currently. Flashed pop times between 1.97-2.03 in skills event, plus arm from behind the plate (up to 84 at Future Games). 

Winston Allen, RHP, Delbarton HS, NJ, 2017
Allen has a strong build at 6-foot-2 178-pounds. Sat 84-86 mph from an over-the-top slot. Showcased a sharp 74 mph downer breaking ball with 11/5 depth. Struck out the side (four batters) in one of his innings. One of the top uncommitted 2017s currently.

Max Winters, MIF, Ocean Twp. HS, NJ, 2019
Winters has a stocky 5-foot-8 155-pound build. Showed very well in infield evaluations and batting practice. Offensively- starts stance slightly opened with hands in line with shoulder. Uses a small leg kick to recenter body. Hips are fluid and swing is compact. 

+ Tate Ballestero, C, Morristown HS, NJ, 2019
Ballestero has a lean, lanky build at 6-foot-3 175-pounds. Switch hitting catcher, swung only from the left side on the first day (only faced RHP's). Swing is identical from both sides of the plate. Shows some projectability at the plate - line drive hitter. Room for muscle on frame. Threw the ball very well from behind the plate both in the skills workout and in the game 2.12-2.18 (in workout).

Elian Guzman, INF, Lodi HS, NJ, 2018
Guzman homered off the scoreboard and tripled to deep left center. Compact swing with present bat speed. Gap to gap pop. Had one of the best offensive days out of the whole event.

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