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Cape League Notes: Week 6

Reports from the final week of the CCBL regular season.

Welcome to the 6th and final edition of Cape League notes! In case you have missed the previous weeks (one, two, three, four, and five), I have spent the summer on the Cape as an intern, getting in-person looks at some of the nation’s top collegiate players. This final edition of notes will wrap up what I’ve seen over the course of the season, with updates on players I wrote about in prior weeks, highlights from the final 10 days of play, and some predictions for the future.

On a personal level, I’ve had a blast getting to work and cover the Cape League this summer. It’s been a grind, but I highly recommend it for anyone looking to break into the sports industry. If anyone has questions about my experience this season or wants further information on players I’ve seen — including more detailed reports and FV grades — feel free to reach out via Twitter (@natan_cd) or in the PL+ discord.

Without further ado, here is the bevy of notes from the final week of CCBL action;

 

Brooks Lee, SS, Y-D/Cal Poly

 

Lee was one of the top prep shortstops in the 2019 draft class but could not be dissuaded from playing at hometown Cal Poly, where his father is the head coach. After a freak leg injury limited him to just 2 games as a freshman, he returned to slash .342/.384/.486 for the Mustangs as a sophomore. It’s been a whirlwind summer for Lee who, like many of the CCBL’s top prospects, left the Cape in early July to join the USA Collegiate National Team. While a majority of those players didn’t return to the Cape, Lee did — and continued to mash for a Y-D squad chasing the playoffs. In 21 games he slashed .405/.432/.667 with 6 HR and 13 RBI.

Lee added muscle entering the summer (15-20lbs since his freshman year) and shows a much fuller 6’2” frame. He’s a switch-hitter who looks comfortable from both sides of the plate. In the small 9 AB sample I’ve seen in person, Lee has 6 hits (3 lefty and 3 righty). He shows more power left-handed with a smooth swing that produces plenty of natural loft. From the right side, he’s much shorter to the ball, but his added strength should aid his already present contact ability. He’s merely an average runner, but still moves well considering the prior knee injury and added weight. Lee was impressive in the field as well, with smooth motions and a plus arm. He may not make the flashy plays but is more than capable of sticking at SS long-term. That, combined with his offensive profile, gives Lee the makings of a future star, a notion that will likely be reflected in his draft slot next summer.

 

Jace Bohrofen, OF, Falmouth/Arkansas

 

Bohrofen is a lefty-swinging corner OF whose value lies in the extent of his power output. Aiding that projection is recently added muscle and a swing path that should provide plenty of pop. Though he hit just two homers as a freshman at Oklahoma, he hit 5 for Falmouth this season (in an equal number of games) with a wood bat against arguably better pitching. His contact skills aren’t anything special, but Bohrofen draws plenty of walks and doesn’t strike out at an alarming rate. He’s struggled a bit against LHP in my small sample of looks — which will definitely be something to monitor as his career progresses — but these things tend to sort themselves out with time. Right now Bohrofen has the Corey Dickerson starter-kit, with the potential outcomes ranging anywhere from strong-side platoon bat to first-division regular if the power continues to grow.

 

Kody Huff, UTL, Y-D/Stanford

 

Stanford “catcher” Kody Huff has looked much improved in the last few weeks of play. He continues to move around the diamond, getting reps at C, 1B, LF, and RF this season, and still lacks a true defensive home. He is a better runner than his compact 5’10” frame would have you believe, but a sub-par throwing arm limits his upside both in the OF and behind the plate. As mentioned in week 3, Huff has a quiet stance at the plate with extremely low hand placement, a high leg kick, and a short swing path. That hodge-podge of swing mechanics makes it hard to project the type of hitter Huff can be, and although he has a knack for up-the-middle contact, the majority of it is on the ground. While he has shown some pull-power (including a 2 HR game last week against Hyannis), he will likely need a swing adjustment to produce to his full potential. At present, he projects to be an Austin Barnes-type role player at the next level.

 

Michael Curialle, UTL, Falmouth/UCLA

 

I wrote about Curialle back in week 1, when he was one of the hottest hitters on the planet, but alternate looks and second opinions have changed my outlook enough that the initial report is worth revisiting. Through the first 10 days of the season, Curialle was slashing .333/.414/.625 with 9 RBI. Though he had a 25% k-rate at UCLA last season, he also had a tolerable .366 OBP to go with it. His Cape League K-rate currently sits at a hefty 31%, something his paltry .316 OBP cannot make up for. He’s shown a complete lack of approach at the plate, resulting in weak contact and unfavorable counts. His ability to make contact with pitches outside the zone can mask poor pitch selection and is often exploited by good pitching. While Curialle is still an uber-athletic player with loud tools and the ability to play any up-the-middle position, his approach issues will severely limit his upside until adjustments are made.

 

Eric Adler, RHP, Bourne/Wake Forest

 

FB: 94-96 T97  CH: 87-89  CU: 77-81

Bourne closer Eric Adler has been one of the best relievers on the Cape, leading the league in saves (7) and tallying a 1.15 ERA, 0.83 WHIP, and 29 strikeouts in 15.2 innings. The Wake Forest righty challenges hitters with a mid-90s fastball that gets more rise than run and a sharp curveball that has good vertical tilt. He only mixed in a few changeups, but his FF/CU combination should play well into a major league bullpen role.

 

Dalton Rushing, C/1B, Bourne/Louisville

 

Rushing has been the leading hitter for Bourne this season, slashing .314/.401/.542 with 6 HR and 24 RBI. That production is buoyed by advanced plate discipline and strong contact skills, as his line-to-line approach allows him to avoid prolonged slumps. He’s got a catcher’s build at 6’1” and 225 pounds, though the vast majority of his CCBL appearances have come at 1B/DH. That is where he profiles long-term as he’s just an average receiver behind the plate and likely doesn’t have the range to see extended time in the outfield. Wherever Rushing lands on the defensive spectrum, his bat carries enough value to see major league service time.

 

Featured Image by Jacob Roy (@jmrgraphics3 on IG)

Natan Cristol-Deman

Natan is a California native and senior at UMass Amherst. He enjoys applying analytics to scouting and player development. You can find him on twitter @natan_cd

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