Letters of Intent
By Bob Elliott
The catching class for 2016 continues to grow deeper and deeper.
Two more names can be added to next year’s class of high schoolers which includes C Andrew Yerzy (Toronto Ont.) of the Toronto Mets and C Luke Van Rycheghem (Kent Bridge, Ont.) of the Ontario Blue Jays.
Both Zachary Fascia (Brampton, Ont.) of the Brampton Royals and C Spencer VanDerStarren (Mississauga, Ont.) of the Ontario Blue Jays impressed at Perfect Game Pitcher/Catcher Indoor Showcase at PG headquarters in Cedar Rapids, IA.
Fascia was ranked the sixth best prospect of the 82 pitchers and catchers attending. The Brampton catcher, who plays for coach Frank Fascia, tied for top velocity in his group (80 MPH) and had the second best pop time (1.90). He had the second best velocity and the fourth best pop time.
VanDerStarren, who plays for coach Dino Roumel, was fifth best in his group in both velocity (74 MPH) and pop time (2.06 seconds).
RHP Zack Demchenko (Okotoks, Alta.) of the Pony Express was the other Canadian to compete in the showcase.
The Perfect Game Report
Day 1 Morning Sessions
Name C Grad School City St
1. Nicholas Blomgren 80 2015 Craig Milton WI
1. Zachary Fascia 80 2016 Turner Fenton SS Brampton ON
5. Spencer VanDerStarren 74 2016 Lorne Park Secondary Misssissauga ON
(Overall: Fascia second, VanDerStarren 14th).
Catching pop times
Name Pop Grad School City St
1. Johnny Hawk 1.89 2016 Creighton Preparatory McClelland IA
2. Zachary Fascia 1.90 2016 Turner Fenton SS Brampton ON
5. Spencer VanDerStarren 2.06 2016 Lorne Park Secondary Misssissauga ON
(Overall: Fascia fourth, VanDerStarren 12th).
Batting practice highlhts
Spencer VanDerStarren (2016 C, Misssissauga, ON) hit from a slightly open stance with an aggressive approach at the plate. He squared the ball up consistently and showed good bat speed.
Zachary Fascia (2016 C, Brampton, ON) showed short swing with good bat speed. He showed good hitting tools at the plate.
Top Hitters and Pitchers for Orange
Zachary Fascia (2016 C, Brampton, ON) pitched in the 86-88 mph range from an over the top arm slot. He generates good downward plane and has a lively arm as the ball jumps out of his hand. Showed good command of all his pitches mixing in sharp 12–6 curveball with late break and good depth.
Spencer VanDerStarren (2016 C, Misssissauga, ON) has a medium build with a thick lower half and drives the ball from gap to gap. He has a good eye at the plate and shows good pitch recognition.
2016 Top Prospects
1. Cooper Johnson – C – 2016 – Mundelein, IL
Johnson has to be on the very short list of the best defensive catchers in the country regardless of class. Just as impressively, he looks like he’s taken some very positive steps forward with his swing and was one of the top hitters this weekend as well.
6. Zachary Fascia – C – 2016 – Brampton, ON
Fascia showed two-way potential, with a well balanced set of defensive and offensive tools as a catcher and a fastball up to 88 mph on the mound. The young Canadian plays the game with energy and enthusiasm.