Ontario Scout Blog: CPBL Showcase Weekend (May 12)

Cam Black-Araujo
Assistant Director, PBR Canada

At long last, live-game action is underway across the province as teams and players break out of their walls of their facilities to get on green grass and face live arms. Our staff has been out-and-about the past several weeks taking in the action with several weekends of constant games from morning until night and this past weekend was no different.

The CPBL hosted it's Showcase Weekend in Dorchester to give pro scouts and evaluators a first-look at teams and prospects across the 17U and 18U age groups and even had the ABC Academy on-hand from Quebec to add some flavour. Our staff was on-hand for three of the four days in Dorchester with nearly every team in the league in attendance and gave us a chance see a ton of highly-ranked prospects within the province compete against each other.


Ryan Press LHP / OF / TanenbaumCHAT, ON / 2024

2024 LHP Ryan Press (West Virginia commit) was one of the most intriguing arms to take the mound Friday in Dorchester. 6-foot-1, 160-pound projectable left-hander works with a clean, repeatable delivery and there’s some athleticism on the mound. Came out of the gate with the fastball sitting 86-88mph T89 before settling in at 84-86mph during his final couple innings. There’s feel for the breaking ball with a big, vertical look with 12-6 action and the ability to locate. Has the ability to generate swings/misses on both the fastball and breaking ball. Press looked the part of one of the top arms in Ontario’s 2024 class and it’s a high-ceiling from the Toronto Mets product.

Brendan Lawson SS / 3B / Lawrence Park , ON / 2024

After a relatively quiet week in Kamloops for a player with his talent, 2024 SS Brendan Lawson (Florida commit) came out aggressive on Friday and looking to do damage. Left-handed hitter with some pop in the bat and the ability to drive the ball to the opposite field, as shown with his HR to LCF that just cleared the 375 ft  sign. Came through with two total knocks in the game and the batter’s box continues to be where his biggest value comes on the field. Lawson was the hottest Canadian hitter in the country last summer and should continue to draw significant interest each time he takes the field going forward.

Evan Schweizer RHP / N/A, ON / 2024

2024 RHP Evan Schweizer (uncommitted) is an interesting arm with your desirable pitchers frame at 6-foot-5, 195-pounds. Works downhill and looks to work down in the zone with his stuff. The fastball sat 85-87 T88mph on Friday and coupled it with a breaking ball at 76-78mph, tunneling the two pitches well. The breaking ball is still developing but showed the ability to land it for strikes. Intriguing overall package on the mound with the size and arm and the development of his secondary stuff could really bring his game to another level.

Benjamin Kautto C / OF / Western Tech (gifted), ON / 2025

2025 C Benji Kautto (uncommitted)  is the lone 2025 on OBJ’s 17U roster and on a loaded batting order, he looked right at home in the middle of the order. The 5-foot-11, 190-pound catcher had his pullside power on display during the matchup against GLC, leaving the yard once for a HR and later picking up a ground-rule double down the LF line. Consistently gets AB’s against older competition and has no issues finding the barrel against high velocity arms. One of the top 2025 positional players in the country and still uncommitted.

Aiden Taggart RHP / Grimsby, ON / 2025

Friday was our first in-game look at Taggart this year and his three pitch-mix allows him to constantly change speeds on hitters and keep them off balance. Size and strength on the mound at 6-foot-3, 200-pounds and looks like he’s still figuring things out mechanically on the mound with his size and growth. Plenty to like in the three-pitch mix, starting with the fastball that sat 84-86mph and projects to continue trending upwards. Flashed one of the better changeups we saw on the day at 76-77 that generated plenty of swings and misses, along with a breaking ball at 74-75mph. Another 2025 arm in Ontario with the size and stuff that should peak the interest of college coaches.

Jayden Bailey LHP / Collingwood collegiate institute, ON / 2024

2024 LHP Jayden Bailey (uncommitted) seems to be an under the radar arm in the province who’s consistently able to get outs against good lineups. 6-foot-2, 195-pound left-hander with a smooth, effortless delivery with a little bit of a cross-fire look in there. He was heavy on the fastball on Friday with the pitch sitting 85-87mph with armside run. Also flashed a curveball and changeup later in counts after getting ahead with the fastball. One of the better uncommitted 2024 left-handers in Ontario and showed well on the Ontario Blue Jays Fall Trip going up against Division I opponents.

Seth Ainsworth RHP / N/A, ON / 2024

2024 RHP Seth Ainsworth (uncommitted) got the start on Friday for GLC against ABC and while it wasn’t the best we’ve seen from him, it’s a highly intriguing arm on the mound that worked up to 89mph. Undersized on the mound right now at 5-foot-10, 165-pounds and worked with a three-pitch mix. The fastball sat 85-88mph T89 and was efficient when working up in the zone, getting swings/misses. Also flashed a curveball at 75-77mph and changeup at 83mph but battled to get them into the strike zone at times. Another high-upside arm out of the GLC program as he continues to develop on the mound and fill out.

Cameron Baker C / 3B / Mississauga, ON / 2024

2024 C Cam Baker doesn’t have the loudest tools at first glance but continues to hit against high-level arms while handling himself well behind the dish. Had one of the best days at the dish on Friday among all hitters, racking up a pair of extra-base hits along with a homerun. It’s a well-rounded game and there’s not a ton of swing/miss in his game right now as he looks confident with the bat in his hands. Does a really good job handling a pitching staff with a plethora of high-velocity arms and his high baseball IQ is evident on the field. With his continued production, it shouldn’t be much longer before you see Baker find a home at a post-secondary program.

Anthony Unga RHP / Abbey Park High School, ON / 2024

2024 RHP Anthony Unga (uncommitted) still has some rawness to his game on the mound but there’s size and strength at 6-foot-4, 220-pounds and the velocity seems to come easy to him. The fastball sat 85-88 T89 from a minimal effort delivery and looked to work down in the zone with the pitch. Also flashed a breaking ball with some tight spin and bite but is still generating feel for the pitch. An interesting arm with a high-ceiling as he continues to grow mechanically on the mound and refine his secondary offerings.

Dante Smith CF / RHP / Pickering, ON / 2024

2024 OF Dante Smith seemed to have his coming out party this past weekend, showing the ability to drive the ball against high-level arms. Undersized right now with tons of room to add strength and fill out at 5-foot-9, 150-pounds but the ball was jumping off his bat this past weekend with several extra-base hits to the deep parts of the park. Simple, balanced setup from the left-side and the hit-tool and ability to find the barrel have developed well. Athlete on the field with no issues manning centrefield. Impressive showing this week from Smith with the ability to impact a game on both sides of the ball.

Brock Grainger C / 1B / L.C.V.I, ON / 2024

2024 C/1B Brock Grainger put together another good week at the dish following the Ontario Youth Team Tryouts where he had his bat-to-ball skills on display. Sheer size immediately catches your eyes from the left-side of the box at 6-foot-2, 215-pounds with an impressive ability to put the ball in play for his size, although it comes at a cost as we haven’t seen him flash much power recently. He can handle himself behind the dish right now but has the look of a potential first baseman down the road, where he’s shown the bat will be able to handle itself at the position. Good start to the year for Grainger who continues to be one of the more productive bats each time we see him.


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