Tools of the Trade: 2024 Defenders
September 28, 2023
A breeding ground for upper-echelon northeast talent, New York's class of 2024 set the bar high, making noise in all corners of the state. Though the amount of college-ready arms has certainly been intriguing (25 of the first 40 ranked), we've seen a similar balance of talent with quality position players sprinkled throughout. When undergoing the evaluation process, our staff uses the five tools (hit, power, glove, arm, and run) as a barometer for comparing players against one another. Obviously, each will need to be refined properly and accompanied by in-game success in order for them to have full effect. Today we break down one of the top tools within an exciting class of prospects.
As the saying goes "defense wins championships," and having a strong core at the C, MIF, and OF spots can be suffocating for the opposition. Some of the more important commonalities among the pros are speed, footwork, tempo, posture, angles, arm-strength, transfers, and slot, however baseball instincts & feel also come into play. Take a look at some of the best 2024 defenders statewide who do most, if not all to keep zeros off the board.
Seven Alemais C / All Hallows, NY / 2024
A well known leader behind the plate with quick hands and a seamless transfer, Alemais controls the run game as pop times dip below 2.00. The 5-foot-10, 185-pounder has been up to 80MPH with advanced carry, while working extremely hard for his pitchers in the dirt.
Wake Forest commit
Ben Fishel OF / OF / Tappan Zee, NY / 2024
Rankings StateRank: 49 / POS: 7
Filling the role of a ballhawk CF, Fishel goes and gets everything in the air with twitchy movements and fluid hips. There's more to come at 5-foot-11, 170-pounds, on top of an impressive 92MPH OF arm at last year's #NEProcase. The rankings riser shows a real feel in space with clean angles to the attack point.
Jeremy Reyes SS / 2B / Monsignor McClancy , NY / 2024
Rankings StateRank: 62 / POS: 9
One of the more up-tempo athletes, Reyes glides around the diamond with pillow-soft hands and ability to change slots on the run. We've seen the internal clock challenge any defender statewide, while an upper-80's arm offers him chances to stick on the left side long term. Not even close to his physical ceiling yet at 5-foot-8, 150-pounds.
West Virginia commit
Tyler Acevedo SS / 2B / Minisink Valley, NY / 2024
Rankings StateRank: 9 / POS: 2
An ultra-strong 5-foot-11, 195-pound body keeps heading in the right direction, allowing Acevedo to setup with perfect posture at the fielding window. There's a smooth glove-tap that maintains timing and looseness for an accurate 89MPH arm with some "it factor" as well.
Ole Miss commit
Manny Santos SS / RHP / Amsterdam, NY / 2024
Rankings StateRank: 78 / POS: 10
Santos made a huge splash at the #NYSGames, following a 6.83 60YD run with a loud 92MPH INF arm and all the parts you look for up the middle. He's super precise in the "ready hop," giving him range to the backhand side and though the frame suggests a possible move to 2B, don't sleep on the premium skillset at 5-foot-10, 150-pounds.
Rhode Island commit
Geneo Savoca, Jr. RHP / SS / Albany Academy , NY / 2024
When talking raw infield arms, Savoca is near the top of the list, up to 94MPH at March's Northeast Prides Scout Day. However, it's not just the velo that catches the eye, as the 6.73 runner changes direction with the best of them to produce a lightning fast pace at SS. Eyes stay low over the ball utilizing a variety of footwork.
College of Charleston commit
Tyler Vivacqua SS / RHP / Liverpool, NY / 2024
Rankings StateRank: 40 / POS: 5
Long and lean at 5-foot-10, 150-pounds, Vivacqua gets the most out of an efficient frame with quiet confidence on the left side. The upside MIF breaks off the stem with authority and drives downhill through a whippy H 3/4 slot. An 89MPH throwing arm continuously repeats both carry and actions with a pronounced finish.
PREVIOUS TOOLS COVERED:
Class of 2024 Power >>> 9.13.23
Class of 2024 Hitters >>> 9.20.23
|2023 Last Chance Open: Upstate||NY||09/22||Gutchess Lumber Sports Complex - Cortland, NY|
|2023 NY Fall Top Prospect Games||NY||09/30||Central Park - Schenectady, NY|
|2023 CHSAA-Long Island Scout Day||NY||10/08||Holy Trinity HS - Hicksville, NY|
|2023 CHSAA-NYC Scout Day||NY||10/09||Heritage Financial Park - Wappingers Falls, NY|
|2023 Last Chance Open: East||NY||10/22||Heritage Finanical Park - Wappingers Falls, NY|
|2023 NY Unsigned Senior Showcase||NY||10/22||Heritage Financial Park - Wappingers Falls, NY|
|2023 Northeast JUCO Sophomore/Transfer Showcase||NY||10/22||Heritage Financial Park - Wappingers Falls, NY|
|2023 Last Chance Open: Downstate||NY||10/28||East Coast Sports and Fitness - Yorktown Heights|