New Jersey 2016 Class Rankings Updated & Expanded

Sean McGrath
Scouting Director, New Jersey

The Prep Baseball Report rankings for New Jersey have been updated. After watching a summer full of high quality New Jersey baseball, including many talented ball players at our events, we have decided to expand the rankings to 200 players. Moving forward, we understand as a staff that players mature and grow so these rankings can and will change.

Below, we will take a look at the newcomer to the New Jersey 2016 top 10 rankings, the rise of right-handed pitcher committed to Wagner , and the newcomers that impact the top half of the rankings.

Top 10 Newcomer

Gavin Hollowell, right-handed pitcher from Montgomery High School, is making his debut in the state’s top 10 rankings (# 8) due in large part to his performance at the Rivalry Classic, an event held this summer in Pawtucket, home of the Red Sox AAA affiliate. The 6-foot-5 RHP was brilliant at the carefully selected event. Long and projectable, Hollowell showcased very good extension and easy velocity, sitting largely 88-89 miles-per-hour while topping out at 90 MPH. While I knew about the quick arm and angle to his fastball, the St. John’s commit showed me something that I knew was there and had just never seen. He showcased very solid spin and depth to his 12-to-6 breaking ball. He threw his breaking ball with confidence and had a feel for how to differentiate it both in and out of the strike zone.

Wagner Commit Chris Mormile’s Steady Rise

From relatively unknown to undersized and max effort to premium high school velocity, Wildwood’s Chris Mormile has made a big name for himself this summer. The 5-foot-10, 185 pound right-handed pitcher has shown a fastball that reaches 93 miles-per-hour. Some describe the athletic pitcher as max effort; my thoughts are that he maximizes what he has to work with. He has a very explosive lower half, creates a great amount of hip-shoulder separation, and has a very fast arm. He has climbed up to #11 in our state rankings.

Newcomers Impacting the Rankings

+ Nick DeNicola makes his debut in the 2016 rankings at #24. The 6-foot, 195 pound prospect has a strong, physical build and is very fast-twitch for his size. First viewed at the Metropolitan Classic while playing for the Heartland Mets, DeNicola displayed raw power having hit well in batting practice and smashing two long doubles on the final day of the event. He proceeded to show similar power at our Unsigned Senior Showcase. Additionally, he ran an impressive 7.15 while throwing 81 miles-per-hour on a 1.92 pop time behind the dish. He got his turn on the mound later in the event which solidified the jump into the top 25. He sat largely 87-88 miles-per-hour and ranged anywhere between 85 and 89 MPH. He also threw tight, late breaking curveballs at 73-76 miles-per-hour. Listed as a primary catcher, it should be known that the ranking is due to his ability to do both.

+ Matthew Cocciadiferro makes his debut on the 2016 rankings at number 42. Having only seen him a couple times in the high school season on a team that features highly touted players like Austin Bodrato, Devin Ortiz, Joe Neglia, and Justyn Henry-Malloy; Cocciadiferro was able to show his skillset at the Unsigned Senior Showcase. The 6-foot, 165 pound OF/RHP has a slender build but room to add weight. He ran an impressive 6.81 in the 60-yard dash and followed that up by throwing 92 miles-per-hour from the outfield. He showed well in batting practice and went 3-for-3 in game, including a triple down the left field line off of a quality left-hander. Cocciadiferro will be a nice snag by a program still looking for a toolsy ball player.

+ Patrick O’Hare has an athletic, strong build and checks in at 6-foot-1, 190 pounds. The Unsigned Senior Showcase was the first time seeing O’Hare in over a year. He was a pleasant surprise as he’s made great strides in all areas of his game. The 3B/OF had a great impact on Saturday’s event; proving to be a top three player at the event. He ran a 6.85 and showed an 88 mile-per-hour exit velocity off the tee. He had strength in his compact swing with pull pop in batting practice and in-game. He flashed solid actions at third base and in the outfield and was 85 miles-per-hour across the diamond and 88 MPH from the outfied. He can play either position at the next level and debuts at number 52 in the rankings.

Click here to view the entire Top 200 New Jersey 2016 Class Rankings.