Gigliotti, Albanese Off to Scorching Pro Starts

Two former Valley Leaguers have had significant pro debuts, even though they were drafted in different years.

First of all, Michael Gigliotti (Covington 2015) was drafted 12 days ago by the Kansas City Royals in the 4th round. He signed for a bonus of $397,500 (awesome), and was assigned to Rookie level Burlington, in the Appalachian League. Batting leadoff and playing in center field, Michael had a debut to remember on Thursday, June 22nd, when he hit two home runs (one a 2-run shot, one solo), and walked for good measure. In his second game, the next night, Michael had another hit and another walk. So after two games, he’s 3-7, with 3 runs, 3 RBIs, and 2 home runs.

Secondly, Matt Albanese (Aldie 2014) was the first Valley Leaguer drafted in 2016- in the 7th round, by the Minnesota Twins (the 2016 draft was not a good one for the VBL). He signed on June 21st, 2016, and was assigned the next day to Elizabethton, also of the Appy League. But because of a ligament tear in his wrist, he never made his pro debut.

Now, a year later and back in Elizabethton, Matt has made his debut, and what a debut it was. On Friday, June 23rd, Matt played in both games of a doubleheader, and went 4-6 with 2 runs and an RBI. The next day, he played again, and went 3-3, with 2 walks, 2 runs, and 2 RBIs. So after his first three pro games, Matt is 7-9, with 3 doubles, 4 runs, 3 RBIs, and 2 walks.

Obviously, this is just a beginning, but what a beginning it has been for these two players!

Five Excellent Minor League Starts….

I’m sure no one would be surprised to hear that I track every started game by former Valley League pitchers in the minor leagues. Some nights they struggle, some nights everyone does well, and most nights there is a mix.

Last night, however, there were five starts that range from pretty good to amazing. Here they are, in order of awesomeness…

  1. Austin Gomber (Luray 2012), for Double-A Springfield- 8 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 7 K’s, no decision, a game score of 71. Tied for the 10th best start of the season so far.
  2. Ryan Castellanos (Harrisonburg 2014), for Connecticut in the Low-A New York-Penn League- 5 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, win, game score of 67. It was Ryan’s 2017 debut!
  3. Mike O’Reilly (Woodstock 2014), for Low-A Peoria- 6 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K’s, the win (his 5th), game score of 66. Mike has the two highest game scores of the season so far. This start wasn’t as good as those, but he’s still lights out!
  4. Steven Ridings (Charles Town 2014-15), for Low-A Everett- 5 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K’s, the win, game score of 60. Steven has pitched in 5 games in 2017… in 4 different levels. Ridiculous, eh?
  5. Chris Huffman (Staunton 2012-13), for Double-A San Antonio- 6.1 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 K’s, the win (his 3rd at San Antonio, and 4th overall in 2017), game score of 57.

Combined, the five went 4-0, with a 1.78 ERA and 0.79 WHIP. (30.1 IP, 16 H, 7 R, 6 ER, 8 BB, 22 K’s) Well done!


Results from Saturday June 24


New Market 8, Front Royal 4
Strasburg 8, Winchester 2
Woodstock 6, Purcellville 4
Charlottesville 8, Harrisonburg 1
Staunton 7, Covington 6

Hitter of the Day

Deacon Medders Alabama 2017Our hitter of the day is the only player with 4 hits last night- Staunton’s Deacon Medders, from Alabama! Deacon went 4-4, with a run, 2 RBIs, and a stolen base. He is 7-15 at the plate so far, and he has also started 3 games on the mound.

Others of Note

Simon Landry, Strasburg: 3-5, 2B, 2 runs
Brandon Quaranta, Strasburg: 2-4, 2 runs, BB
Jacob Hirsh, Strasburg: 2-4, 2 runs, 2B, 2 SB, BB
Reuban Ball, JR, Winchester: 2-3, run, 2 RBIs, BB, HR
Derrick Herd, Woodstock: 3-4, run, RBI, 2B
Ray Hernandez, Purcellville: 3-4, RBI, 2B
Haiden Lamb, Charlottesville: 3-4, run, 3 RBIs
Orley Arrellano, Covington: 2-4, run, 2 RBIs, BB, SB

Pitcher of the Day

Our POD was pretty clear by game score last night; Nick Fuchs, from Gannon and Nick Fuchs Gannon 2017pitching for Woodstock, put up a game score of 74 after 6 shutout innings and 95 pitches. He allowed 3 hit, 1 walk, and struck out 9 to earn the win. Nick is now 2-1, 1.77 over his first 20 1/3 innings.

Others of Note

Dylan Hall, Strasburg: 6.2 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K’s, win (58)
Connor Gillispie, Charlottesville: 4 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K’s (59)
Drew Loepprich, Charlottesville: 4 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K’s, win
Eric Yankey, Harrisonburg: 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K
Peter Soporowski, Staunton: 6 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 2 K’s (54)

Sunday’s Games

Harrisonburg at Covington
Waynesboro at Charlottesville
Winchester at Woodstock
New Market at Staunton

Results from Friday, June 23


Front Royal 11, Woodstock 1
Strasburg 11, Purcellville 8
Waynesboro 12, Covington 5
Harrisonburg 3, Staunton 1
Winchester 7, New Market 2

Hitter of the Day

Dominic Canzone Ohio State 2017

Some excellent choices for today- three hitters tallied 4 hits! The best stat line, however, was put up by Dominic Canzone, from Front Royal and Ohio State. The rising sophomore went 4-5, with 4 runs, 3 RBIs, a double, home run, and 2 stolen bases. Dominic is now 23-61 for the summer, with a slash line of 377/473/590.

Others of Note

Thomas Johns, Front Royal: 2-4, 2 runs, RBI, BB
Simon Landry, Strasburg: 4-6, 3 runs, 4 RBIs, HR, SB
Brandon Quaranta, Strasburg: 3-6, run, 2 RBIs, HR
Jake Perry, Strasburg: 3-4, 2 runs, 2 BB, 2 2B
Tyler Martin, Strasburg: 2-5, RBI, BB, 2B
Jackson Furstace, Strasburg: 2-3, run, BB, HBP, SB
Sheldon Reed, Purcellville: 3-5, run, RBI, SB
Caleb Walls, Covington: 2-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, BB, 2B, SB
Malik Stephens, Waynesboro: 2-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, BB, 3B
Luke Robinson, Waynesboro: 3-4, 2 runs, RBI, BB
Dillon Reed, Winchester: 2-4, 2 runs, RBI, BB, SB
Cody Wilson, Winchester: 4-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs, 3B, 4 SB
Damian Rodriguez, Winchester: 2-3, run, BB

Pitcher of the Day

Our POD is Mason Studstill, from Harrisonburg! Mason threw 8 innings against Mason Studstill Miami 2017Staunton, allowing 6 hits, 1 earned run, 3 walks, and struck out 8 for a game score of 71. Mason pitched at Miami in 2017, but will transfer to Eastern Florida State College for the 2018 season. Mason threw a whopping 128 pitches in this game; I believe that this is the first time all season that a starter in the Valley went over 100.

Others of Note

Mark Moclair, Front Royal: 5 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 5 BB, 6 K’s, win (60)
Trevor Harris, Front Royal: 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 Bb, 4 K’s
Jordan Cox, Staunton: 5.2 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 9 K’s (65)

Saturday’s Games

New Market at Front Royal
Strasburg at Winchester
Woodstock at Purcellville
Charlottesville at Harrisonburg
Covington at Staunton

Povse Makes Major League Debut

Max Povse Seattle 2017It is my pleasure to announce that Max Povse (Staunton 2013) has made his major league debut for the Seattle Mariners!

Max was called up a few days ago, but finally appeared in a game last night, against the Detroit Tigers. Max gave up 3 earned runs in his 2/3 of an inning, including a home run to perhaps the best righthanded batter in the game, Miguel Cabrera. Despite this shaky start, Max has a very bright future!

Max becomes the second former Valley Leaguer to make his debut in 2017, joining fellow Mariner and former Turk Emilio Pagan (2010). By my count, Max becomes the 204th former VBLer to play in the majors.

Results from Thursday, June 22


Purcellville 6, Front Royal 5
Purcellville 8, Front Royal 5
Waynesboro 5, Winchester 3
Harrisonburg 5, Covington 3
Staunton 5, Strasburg 4
New Market 8, Charlottesville 4

Hitter of the Day

Bruce Strickland Felician 2017A double and home run carry the day- our HOD is Covington’s Bruce Strickland, from Felician! Bruce went 2-4, with 2 runs, an RBI, and the aforementioned double and home run. He’s now 7-16 in his young season, with a slash line of 438/450/938. Out of his 7 hits so far, 5 of them have gone for extra bases.

Others of Note

Blake Thomas, Front Royal: 3-5, run, SB
Sheldon Reed, Purcellville: 2-4, 3 RBIs
Andrew Zban, Purcellville: 3-4, 2 RBIs
Raul Cabrera, Purcellville: 2-3, 2 runs, RBI, 2B, BB
Tony Beam, Harrisonburg: 3-5, RBI, 2B
Joe Lytle, Harrisonburg: 2-2, run, 2 RBIs, 2B
Hunter Stokes, Strasburg: 2-4, run, 2B, BB
Jay Charleston, Staunton: 3-5, run, RBI, 2 SB
Vinnie Pasquantino, Charlottesville: 3-4, run, SB
Eric Jones, Charlottesville: 3-5, RBI, 2B
Ari Sechopoulos, Charlottesville: 2-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, 2B
Jacob Rhinesmith, New Market: 2-3, 2 runs, RBI, 3B, 2 SB
Jack Hartman, New Market: 2-4, 2 runs, RBI

Pitcher of the Day

Our POD is Carter Bach, from Harrisonburg and Wake Forest! Carter earned a game Carter Bach Wake Forest 2017score of 64 with 5 innings, 1 hit, 1 unearned run, 3 walks, and 4 strikeouts. This was Carter’s second game- he’s now 0-0, 3.00 in 9 innings pitched.

Others of Note

Nickolas Ortega, Front Royal: 3.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K’s
Christopher Farish, Harrisonburg: 3 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 9 K’s (I don’t usually include this many earned runs over 3 IP, but 9 K’s?!? Wow.)
PJ Piesko, Covington: 5.2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 1 K (57)
Brendan Smith, Strasburg: 3 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K’s
Derek Duffy, Staunton: 2.1 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 6 K’s (6 out of 7 outs recorded by K)
Corley Woods, Staunton: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K’s, win

Friday’s Games

Woodstock at Front Royal
Strasburg at Purcellville
Covington at Waynesboro
Winchester at New Market
Staunton at Harrisonburg

Results from Wednesday June 21


Staunton 7, Waynesboro 0
Charlottesville 7, Strasburg 5
Purcellville 6, Winchester 0
Front Royal 10, Covington 6
Harrisonburg 9, Woodstock 1 (A game both ugly and brilliant)

Hitter of the Day

Vinnie Pasquantino ODU 2017Our hitter of the day is one of the murderer’s row from the Tom Sox- this time it’s Vinnie Pasquantino, from Old Dominion, who went 4-5, with 3 runs scored, 2 RBIs, a walk, double, and home run. Vinnie is now 19-49, with a slash line of 388/446/653. He also has 7 doubles in 11 games!

Others of Note

Antwaun Tucker, Staunton: 3-5, 2 runs, 2B, SB
Max Wood, Staunton: 2-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs, 2B
Michael Wielansky, Charlottesville: 2-5, 2 runs, RBI, BB, 2B (Yet again!)
Rick Spiers, Charlottesville: 2-5, RBI, BB, SB
Ari Sechopoulos, Charlottesville: 3-5, 2 RBIs, 2B
Trevin Esquerra, Purcellville: 2-4, 2 runs, 2B, 3B
Ray Hernandez, Purcellville: 3-4, run, 3 RBIs, HR
Trey McDyre, Purcellville: 3-4, run
Dylan Hardy, Front Royal: 1-3, 2 runs, 3 BB, 2 SB
Luc Lipcius, Front Royal: 3-4, 2 runs, RBI, 2 BB, 2B, SB
Dominic Canzone, Front Royal: 3-5, 2 runs, RBI, BB, 3 SB
Thomas Johns, Front Royal: 2-4, RBI, BB
Sebastian Dunn, Covington: 4-5, 2 runs
Austin Adams, Woodstock: 2-3, BB
Tevin Mitchell, Harrisonburg: 1-2, 3 runs, RBI, 2 BB, HR, SB (And at least 2 fantastic plays as shortstop)

Pitcher of the Day

An interesting night- many, many good hitting choices, and several good pitching ones, Andy Crum Shippensburg 2017too. The top pitcher is Andy Crum, from Purcellville and Shippensburg, who threw 7 shutout innings while allowing 2 hits, 3 walks, and striking out 1. He earned the win and a game score of 71. After 3 starts, Andy is now 1-1, 1.55 in 17 1/3 innings.

Others of Note

Deacon Medders, Staunton: 6 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 8 K’s, win (70)- a very close 2nd
Justin Sorokowski, Charlottesville: 5 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K’s, win (53)
Dylan Verdonk, Winchester: 4 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K’s (59) (How do Dylan’s friends keep from saying “Ver-donk-a-donk” all the time? Sorry, Dylan.)
Ryan Leckich, Front Royal: 4 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K
Zak Devermann, Harrisonburg: 5 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 4 BB, 2 K’s (59)
Jarred Taylor, Harrisonburg: 3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 K’s

Thursday’s Games

Purcellville at Front Royal- 1st game at 630, the second at 700
Waynesboro at Winchester
Harrisonburg at Covington
Strasburg at Staunton
Charlottesville at New Market