Prep Baseball Report

2024 Preseason Power 25: No. 19

PBR Virginia/DC


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For the next two weeks we will roll out our Preseason Power 25. Three staff members voted on their version of the thirty best teams in the Preseason Power 25, with a possibility of 90 total vote points for each team. We will release three teams per day for the first week and then move to two teams per day once we reach the Top 10 next week. Voting for preseason teams centers more around the depth of talent on that team, as well as where it stacks up within their region/area, as opposed to strictly predicting schedule outcomes. 

Generally, larger schools and classifications have a greater depth of player talent on roster. However, once the season begins and records begin to take shape, the Power 25 will be adjusted as needed. In addition to that, we will debut our Private School Top 10 around April 1st and Small School Top 10 around mid-April. 

Checking in as the first team inside of the Top 20 is #19 McLean. The Highlanders return a wealth of talent on their pitching staff, as well as some new faces that could be impact arms.

#19 McLean

The Highlanders had a tough 2023 season relative to the expectations that they entered the season with. While they lost Chris Morabito (Bucknell) and AJ Poole (Mary Washington) and a few others to graduation, the bulk of the core of the team is back this season and again on paper enters the spring as one of the most talented teams in the Region. Offensively, senior barrel machine Yuta Shimo is back as is that strong 2025 core to the lineup that includes infielder Ethan Ball (Virginia Tech) and centerfield Gabriel Pegues. On the mound, there is a ton of high-end options for McLean to fill out the rotation with. Look for a bounce-back season from senior Aidan Carey (George Washington) after a strong fall. Senior Jack Nance has a chance to be very good and junior Christian Dray (Richmond) has flashed ace potential. In addition to all of that talent on the mound, they have a few more uncommitted arms that could play big roles this season. The Liberty District is shaping up to be a dogfight this spring and is the deepest its been in a while, and whoever emerges from there will be battle-tested and ready to push for a Region Championship. The pieces are there for McLean to be that team this spring and the Highlanders should challenge for a State Tournament berth.

Ethan Ball

Class of 2025 / 3B

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2025
  • Primary Position: 3B
    Secondary Position: SS
  • High School: McLean
    State: VA
  • Summer Team: Stars Showcase 15U
  • Height: 6-1
    Weight: 185lbs
  • Bat/Throw: L/R

Christian Dray

Class of 2025 / RHP

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2025
  • Primary Position: RHP
    Secondary Position: OF
  • High School: McLean
    State: VA
  • Summer Team: Stars 15u Devitt
  • Height: 6-2
    Weight: 160lbs
  • Bat/Throw: R/R

Yuta Shimo

Class of 2024 / OF

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2024
  • Primary Position: OF
    Secondary Position: 2B
  • High School: McLean
    State: VA
  • Summer Team: Stars 17u Sisk
  • Height: 5-6
    Weight: 160lbs
  • Bat/Throw: R/R

FInal Thoughts:

"McLean is one of the deepest staffs in the state. While the arms struggled at times last spring, I expect close to a 180 this year. They have depth, the arms appear healthy, and they have some athleticism in the front half of the order that are consistent producers. I really really like this team and I think the only reason they are in the bottom half of the rankings is because of the lack of consistency from the arms last season."

- Jason Burton (Virginia/DC Scouting Director)