Prep Baseball Report

VA/DC Scout Blog: Gonzaga vs McLean

John Nolan
NOVA Scouting Coordinator

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Thursday night saw #3 Gonzaga exit the District to take on #17 McLean in a non-league matchup for both teams. Both teams went with committed righthanders to start the game, Gonzaga starting senior Ethan Van Sice (Cornell) and McLean going with junior Aidan Carey (James Madison). Gonzaga jumped out to an early lead as senior Marcus LeClair (Virginia Tech) hammered a two-run home run in the top of the first. The Eagles would open the lead up to 4-1 after two innings.

McLean was able to battle back to tie the game on a misplayed pop up and took a 7-6 lead into the top of the seventh inning. Gonzaga tied the game on a gutsy send of a runner from second on a ground out to short, but that would ultimately not be enough as senior Jakob Luu delivered a walk-off winner for the Highlanders. Yuta Shimo had multiple hits in the game for McLean and scored the winning run.





Marcus LeClair 1B / OF / Gonzaga, VA / 2023

LeClair is a Virginia Tech commit and a switch hitter. He played outfield in this game and seemed fine out there. He had three plate appearances in the game, ambushing a first pitch fastball that was middle-middle and up for a monster home run in his first at-bat. In his second at-bat, he came up in an RBI situation and attacked the first pitch he could get the barrel on, lining an RBI single to right. He worked a walk in his third at-bat. He was pinch run for twice which removed him from the game very early otherwise he likely would have gotten two more at-bats. The power is present for sure and the barrel feel from the left side was there in this game too.











Ethan Ball SS / 3B / McLean, VA / 2025

Ball is a Virginia Tech commit and was a standout last year as a freshman hitting in the middle of a State Title contender's lineup. He got off to a pretty good start in this game, with a base hit and a pair of very mature walks. In both of the walks, he was down in the count early and fought pitches off to get the count back to full while also showing a good eye on a couple of tough takes. Showed the ability to adjust within at-bats, his hand-eye and bat to ball skills are high and were on display in this game. They currently have him playing third base and he misplayed a ball or two over there, looks like he is getting used to the shorter time to react. That will take care of itself over time, but the bat is in midseason form and even as a sophomore he is one of the best pure hitters in Northern Virginia.




Aidan Carey RHP / McLean, VA / 2024

Carey is a James Madison commit. He started the game for McLean and didn't have his best stuff, but he did battle and give the Highlanders a chance to come back. After walking the leadoff hitter in a deep count, he gave LeClair a middle-middle fastball up which didn't go well, but did limit damage beyond that and allowed McLean's offense to settle into the game. Very tight strike zone all night did not help any pitchers. Carey's velo was a bit down from where we would expect it, but its early in the season and not warm yet. He was 80-83, touching 84. Its a very low arm slot with short easy arm action and lower effort. Fastball gets a ton of late life. Slider was 70-72 with sharp 10/4 break to it. His best inning was the inning where he used the slider a bit more heavily.






Aaron Chandler C / OF / McLean, VA / 2025

Chandler was the starting catcher for McLean in the game and ended up having a pretty good day there and at the plate. Defensively, he looked fine receiving and did a good job blocking up pitches and minimizing extra bases. At the plate, worked a walk and also doubled into the leftfield corner. Its a shorter simple slightly uphill line drive swing with some present gap power.




Christian Dray RHP / OF / McLean, VA / 2025

Dray is 6-2 with a lankier frame that has plenty of projection left to it. Very simple drop and drive delivery, not a lot of moving parts to it, throws from a low three-quarters arm slot with very very very easy loose arm action. Absolutely threw with almost no effort in the game. Fastball was 81-82, touching 83, mostly just sitting right at 82. The pitch has a ton of induced horizontal movement, which we've seen at scout days in the past but was something else to see in person as it chewed up hitters. Showed a slider that was 69-70 with sharp 10/4 break that played really well when down as a finisher. Also showed a change-up at 75-77 with a lot of late life.




Jack Nance RHP / OF / McLean , VA / 2024

Nance has a 6-5 athletic frame that is a bit lankier and has plenty of projection left to it. Its a shorter quick arm action from a three-quarters slot, drop and drive in his delivery, threw with higher effort and intent in the game. Almost exclusively threw fastballs, which were 84-87, touching 88. He generates some downward angle and a bit of boring action to armside. Got swings and misses on fastballs up and in on hitters hands. Breaking ball was 72 and had sharp 10/4 break to it.




Gabriel Pegues OF / OF / McLean, VA / 2025

Pegues is physical. He played centerfield and hit in the two-hole in the game. Had some mature at-bats, working long counts in drawing a pair of walks early in the game. His athleticism showed up on the bases, he scored from first on an overthrown pickoff attempt. In his final at-bat, he lined a double up the right-center gap, kept his hands inside and stayed short. He moved well in centerfield and is an intriguing athlete, would like to get another look at him later this spring.






Yuta Shimo OF / 2B / McLean, VA / 2024

Shimo has an athletic frame. Anytime we have seen him he has shown a knack for finding the barrel and that continued in this game. He has a short swing and works gap to gap, using the whole field. He shows some doubles power and moves quickly around the bases. Has a chance to hit for a high average at the next level.