Two Named Classification All-Stars

Baseball America has released their classification all-stars for each level of the minor leagues, and two former VBLers have been named! (By the way, ATVL will name a hitter and pitcher of the year for each level later on this offseason,. Stay tuned.)

  • Ben Breazeale (Harrisonburg 2014) was named a first team Short-Season All-Star at designated hitter. Playing for Aberdeen of the New York-Penn League, Ben hit 323/433/474 in 192 at-bats, along with 14 doubles, 5 home runs, and a 27/56 BB/K ratio.
  • Michael Gigliotti (Covington 2015) was named to the first team Rookie All-Star list at outfield. Gigliotti hit 329/442/477 for Burlington in the Appalachian League, along with 8 doubles, 3 triples, 3 home runs, a sterling 32/21 BB/K ratio, and 15 stolen bases in 155 at-bats at the level.

Congrats to both!

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Top 2017 Prospects

Each year, two media outlets, Baseball America and Perfect Game, rank their top prospects in each summer league (well, most of them).

As usual, ATVL is there (with a little help from my friends) to keep everyone informed about what the scouting community thinks about the top players in our league.

So let’s take a look at the top ten prospects from each publication!

Baseball America Valley League Top 10 Prospects 2017
1. Zachary Peek, RHP, Strasburg, (So., Winthrop)
2. Dominic Canzone, OF, Front Royal, (So., Ohio State)
3. Tom Sutera, RHP, Purcellville (Jr., Siena)
4. Vinnie Pasquantino, 1B, Charlottesville, (So., Old Dominion)
5. Luc Lipcius, OF, Front Royal, (So., Tennessee)
6. Nate Pawelczyk, RHP, New Market (Jr., Winthrop)
7. Jake Washer, C, New Market (RSo., East Carolina)
8. Brandon Quaranta, OF/1B, Strasburg (Sr., Philadelphia, Pa.)
9. Mike Wielansky, 2B/SS, Charlottesville (Jr., Wooster, Ohio)
10. Cash Gladfelter, SS, Woodstock (Jr., Shippensburg, Pa.)
Perfect Game Top 10 Prospects 2017
1. Dominic Canzone, OF, Front Royal, (So., Ohio State)
2. Zachary Peek, RHP, Strasburg, (So., Winthrop)
3. Vinnie Pasquantino, 1B, Charlottesville, (So., Old Dominion)
4. Mike Wielansky, 2B/SS, Charlottesville (Jr., Wooster, Ohio)
5. Tom Sutera, RHP, Purcellville (Jr., Siena)
6. Tony Beam, C, Harrisonburg (Sr., Texas-San Antonio)
7. Max Wood, OF, Staunton (Sr., Central Florida)
8. Chris Farish, RHP, Harrisonburg (R-Sr., Wake Forest)
9. Brandon Quaranta, OF/1B, Strasburg (Sr., Philadelphia, Pa.)
10. Trevin Esquerra, 1B/3B, Purcellville (So., Loyola Marymount)

The Semi-Breakdown

Named on Both Lists:

  • Peek (1,2)
  • Canzone (2,1)
  • Sutera (3,5)
  • Pasquantino (4,3)
  • Quaranta (8,9)
  • Wielansky (9,4)

By VBL Team:

  • Strasburg- 2 (Peek, Quaranta)
  • Front Royal- 2 (Canzone, Lipcius)
  • Purcellville- 2 (Sutera, Esquerra)
  • Charlottesville- 2 (Pasquantino, Wielansky)
  • New Market- 2 (Pawelczyk, Washer)
  • Harrisonburg- 2 (Beam, Farish)
  • Woodstock- 1 (Gladfelter)
  • Staunton- 1 (Wood)
  • Covington, Waynesboro, Winchester- 0

 

 

Lopez, Gigliotti Named Appy League All-Stars

Two former Valley Leaguers were named to the Appalachian League postseason All-Star team- Irving Lopez (Staunton 2016) and Michael Gigliotti (Covington 2015).

  • Lopez, from Johnson City (since called up to State College), was named the best second baseman. He hit 287/378/433 in 50 games and 178 at-bats. He hit 7 doubles, 2 triples, 5 home runs, and had a solid 19/25 BB/K ratio.
  • Gigliotti played in Burlington for 42 games before the Royals moved him up a slot to Low-A Lexington in the South Atlantic League. For Burlington, Michael hit 329/442/477 in 155 at-bats, with 8 doubles, 3 triples, 3 home runs, and an amazing 32/21 BB/K ratio. He went on to hit 302/378/419 in 86 at-bats at the next level, too.

Would you be interested in seeing the history of Appy League all-stars connected to the VBL? Of course you would!

2015- Patrick Mazeika, C, Kingsport (Waynesboro 2013)
2014- Jordan Edgerton, 3B, Danville (Woodstock 2013), Trey Cochran-Gill, RP, Pulaski (Harrisonburg 2012)
2013- Emilio Pagan, RP, Pulaski (Harrisonburg 2010) (Emilio was unscored upon in 20 1/3 innings at Pulaski)
2010- Marcus Nidiffer, 1B, Greeneville (Covington 2008-9)

Gomber Named August Pitcher of the Month

 

Austin Gomber Springfield 2017Milb.com has released its August players of the month, and our very own Austin Gomber (Luray 2012) is the Texas League pitcher of the month!

The article included this writeup about Austin:

Springfield Cardinals (Cardinals) left-hander Austin Gomber was 5-0 with a 0.91 ERA in six August starts. Gomber led the Texas league in WHIP (0.76), batting average against (.134) and ERA, while finishing second in strikeouts (44). He did not allow more than two runs in any of his six starts. Gomber, 23, was selected by St. Louis in the fourth round of the 2014 First-Year Player Draft out of Florida Atlantic University.

Pretty awesome month. Overall, Austin has gone 10-7, 3.34 in 26 games started in 2017. He’s allowed 116 hits, 51 walks, and struck out 140 in 143 innings pitched. That leaves him with a 1.17 WHIP, 3.2 BB/9, and 8.8 K/9. All this is Double-A- two levels from the majors, but only one phone call. (I’m not a betting man, but if I were, I would bet pretty heavily on Austin making the major leagues at some point.)

Congrats, Austin!

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Tom Sox Named Summer Team of the Year, and Other Awards

In an absolute first in the history of the league, the Charlottesville Tom Sox have been named the best summer league team in the nation by Perfect Game!

Another media outlet, the website Collegiate Summer Baseball, in what seems like an impossible task, has ranked the top summer league teams from one to thirty. The Tom Sox finished 2nd on this list, behind the Brewster Whitecaps of the Cape Cod League.

Perfect Game also named their summer All-Americans, and two 2017 VBLers made the lists, while one 2016 alum did as well.

  • Of course, Michael Wielansky (Charlottesville) was named to the first team at 2nd base.
  • Brandon Quaranta (Strasburg) was named to the 2nd team at utility.
  • Zach Neff (Waynesboro 2016) was named to the 1st team at starting pitcher. Zach, from Austin Peay, played in the Coastal Plains League. He went 7-0, 1.45, with 2 saves, 34 hits, 7 walks, and 65 strikeouts in 49 2/3 innings pitched. ATVL named Zach the top relief pitcher in the Valley in 2016.

Charlottesville Team Shot resized

Yarbrough Named Pitcher of the Week

Ryan Yarbrough Durham 2017The Valley League has quite a number of pitchers performing well at the upper-most levels of the minor leagues, just waiting for the call to the Show.

Kevin Herget (Strasburg 2012), Sam Howard (Staunton 2012), Chad Huffman (Staunton 2012-13), and Austin Gomber (Luray 2012) come immediately to mind.

There’s one more, of course, and he’s been pitching so well lately that he’s been named the International League’s pitcher of the week for July 31-August 6. That’s Ryan Yarbrough (Luray 2012), who went 2-0, 0.00 over 13 2/3 innings, with only 4 hits allowed, 2 walks, and 8 strikeouts for Triple-A Durham. Overall, Ryan is 12-5, 3.27, with a 1.14 WHIP over 135 innings in 2017. He’s allowed 114 hits, 35 walks, and struck out 131 batters.

I would be surprised if Ryan doesn’t get the call sometime between now and the end of the major league season. Perhaps he’ll help with the Tampa Bay push for a playoff spot….

Two Named NY-Penn League All-Stars

Two former Valley Leaguers have been named to the New York-Penn League All-Star teams, released a few days ago. Both of these players were drafted in June, and are off to very good starts!

  • Ben Breazeale (Harrisonburg 2014) was named to the NYP South team. Ben was drafted in the 7th round in June, and plays for the Aberdeen Orioles. He’s hitting 361/466/521 in 144 at-bats, with 14 doubles, 3 home runs, and a solid 28/35 BB/K rate.
  • Ryan Gridley (Waynesboro 2015) was named to the North squad. Ryan was drafted this June in the 11th round by the Oakland A’s, and plays for the Vermont Lake Monsters. The Lake Monsters. Sigh. Anyway, he’s hitting 269/372/328 in 134 at-bats, with 8 doubles and a 20/18 BB/K rate.

Congrats to both!