UCLA recruit Mickey Moniak (Eric Sorenson)


Prospect Rundown: Area Code Games Day 3

LONG BEACH, Calif. — It takes a lot to get an audible response of any kind from scouts and coaches in the stands at the Area Code Baseball Games. And usually any kind of verbal acknowledgement during a game is not positive. But every once in a while even the old curmudgeons of the scouting beat and the coaches trying to keep their poker faces on at all times will break out of character when someone does something exceptional.

With the bases loaded in the third inning, the Brewers (Southern California) were on the verge of blowing what had been a 5-2 lead entering the inning. Uncommitted Fort Worth (Texas) Richland outfielder Jordan Wiley smacked a pitch to nearly dead center field. With there being two outs, the runners were on the move at the crack of the bat and Wiley looked destined for a bases-clearing extra-base hit as the ball came off his bat at 102.5 mph and traveled 392 feet, but Encinitas (Calif.) La Costa Canyon outfielder Mickey Moniak had other thoughts.

The UCLA commit used his 6.58-second speed in the 60 to sprint back on the ball, but wasn’t able to get behind it. Instead, Moniak tracked it through the air and reached his glove up on the warning track, making an over-the-shoulder Willie Mays-style grab to end the inning. The catch actually brought an audible murmur that could even be heard on the telecast. It was definitely the play of the Area Code Games thus far.

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