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2020 New York Nine Wrap-Up

The 2020 baseball season was difficult to navigate as Covid-19 impacted communities across America. “Above all else, we had the paramount responsibility to ensure the safety of all of our players, their families and those in the community,” stated New York Nine President Ian Millman. “There were many difficult decisions to make, and player health was paramount over winning games, championships and the overall loss of revenue. It wasn’t even a discussion worth having.”

The Nine changed their format for this past season and were able to help get their players better, and exposure to the proper professional and collegiate personnel, while limiting player risk or exposure to the Covid-19 virus. “We had a very talented group set to not only defend our NABF national title, but really had a chance to repeat as back-to-back champions,” added Millman. “Then the world changed our plans and like we teach the kids, we had to adapt.”

The Nine employed a strict training model under the watchful eyes of our coaching staff. Coach Cayenne led all facets of our offensive training as Coach Millman supervised and improved our pitchers. The staff worked with players individually in small group settings in a variety of aspects, including but not limited to strength and conditioning, game situations, individual mental approach and general understanding of all things baseball. The overall environment resembled that of a professional instructs camp. Seeing how well this worked, we extended this model into the fall. Should the situation in the world remain similar to what it is now, will will plan to follow the same model in 2021.

We were able to have both professional scouts and collegiate head coaches/recruiting coordinators view the boys as the year progressed, which is more than most trophy chasing organizations were able to do. “While other organizations charged families a fortune offering kids the ‘hope of being seen’, we got it done”, emphatically added Millman. “We didn’t pocket thousands of dollars then play dumb to families when the NCAA didn’t allow coaches out, instead suggesting families inundate college coaches with emails that had edited videos attached. That model doesn’t generally work unless the coach is specifically alerted about a player from a trusted source.”

The Nine worked with partner organizations so the players could participate in select events that were beneficial for them at the time they were held and not just farming out every single player to other organizations just to show off.

Said Millman, “Sticking to this roadmap, we had players at the PG WWBA National Championship with Team Georgia Baseball Academy in Fort Myers, the Underclass National Championships with Sticks Baseball – two of the top ranked programs in the entire country. This allowed us to keep our individual player costs at a minimum and make sure that those who needed to be in certain places were able to do so. We had National Crosscheckers and Area Supervisors on guys and didn’t want our players to miss their opportunities based on the pandemic…and they didn’t.”

Another First Round Alumni:

When Aaron Sabato was selected in the first round, 27th overall by the Minnesota Twins, he marked the third New York Nine Alumni selected in the first round of the MLB First Year Player Draft. After honing his craft with the Nine during the formative years of his amateur career, the powerful Sabato rewrote the offensive books at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. There’s no doubt that the Rye Brook, New York resident will achieve tremendous success at the professional level.

2020/21 Commitment Alerts:

The Nine was able to get commitments for multiple players to division one schools, including one for an incoming freshman who hadn’t stepped foot in high school, when Class of 2024 outfielder Isaiah Shivers committed to Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Corner Infielder Michael Edwards committed to Coppin State in Baltimore, Maryland. Outfielder Henry Garcia also committed to Southern University. Outfielder Menra Mapfumo committed to D2 Claflin University in Orangeburg, South Carolina as RHP Ray Winter committed to D2 Shippensburg University in Shippensburg, PA. RHP Brayden Martino committed to D1 Hofstra University in Uniondale, New York. RHP Claudio Rodriguez committed to D1 JUCO powerhouse Monroe College in New Rochelle, NY and RHP Hixson Street committed to national top 10 D1 JUCO Odessa College. Every college eligible high school graduate we had for the 2020-2021 season has been situated to continue their academic and athletic career at the next level.

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New York Nine: A Decade of Excellence

The start of the summer season marks the 10th anniversary of the New York Nine. In our first decade, we have enjoyed watching hundreds of our athletes enter the collegiate and pro ranks as well as the workforce and gone on to great success. Now that some of our alumni have begun to have families of their own, one of the the things that we have learned is helping our current players and families connect with our alumni and their families is very important. Our off field focus this year will be connecting with our alumni. We will be doing alumni player capsules over the course of 2016. Each player has a story to tell and an experience to share, and collectively, their stories and experiences make the New York Nine.

Unfortunately we had our database crash and we lost many of our alumni contacts. We are asking any and all New York Nine/Team New York alumni to contact us at

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Winter Update & Winter Workout News

As the winter continues, with temperatures in the low-60s, the New York Nine wanted to officially announce that the 2016 winter workout/tryout will take place at Riesenberg Gymnasium at SUNY Maritime. The 1,200 person arena has recently had a new floor installed. The gym affords us a high quality, well lit, large space to help you get the most out of our winter workout.

As the second mini-camp has concluded, the New York Nine coaches and pro staff were thrilled with the effort of our participants. It is great to see the both New York Nine members and New York Nine hopefuls dedicating themselves for a solid three hours special info. Unfortunately, it is too late to join us for this year’s mini-camp, but there is still availability at the winter workout/tryout next month.

A very happy holiday season to all of our New York Nine players, alumni and their families, as well as everyone who checks in on the organization and its members.

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New York Nine Mini Camp at Pro Swing

The New York Nine is excited to offer our off-season mini camp for three sessions in December. This will be the perfect opportunity to get back to work under the watchful eye of our coaches and guest instructors. It is also a time to work with our pro players who are home and preparing for their upcoming seasons and get your winter baseball fix in an safe environment, mindful of the off-season injury risks. At this time of year if a professional player doing something, you shouldn’t either.

Our mini camp will focus on good reps with offensive and defensive adjustments made by the coaching staff. Pitchers will learn how to get stronger physically and mechanically in a way that will prepare them for the upcoming season and not tax their arms.

There will be a dynamic warm up and cool down as well as full sets of offseason conditioning. This will be a mini (camp) version of the acclaimed winter workout which follows in January and early February.

You do not have to be a member of the Nine, nor want to participate in the summer 2016 to attend.

This mini camp will take place on December 5, 12, 19th from 6 – 8:45 pm at Pro Swing of Port Chester.

The cost for the mini camp is $275, however, if you want register and secure payment before November 15th, the cost will be $200. Please click here and fill out the form at the bottom of the page to register.

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New York Nine Win Antonia Agostinelli Memorial Tournament

October 18, 2015 (Yaphank, LI) – The Antonia Agostinelli Memorial Tournament, run by Sal Agostinelli to raise funds for cancer awareness, took place over the weekend at Baseball Heaven.

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The 40-team tournament invites the areas top clubs and is the final big event of the calendar baseball year.

NY Nine 1, East Coast LumberJacks 0 – In the tournament opener, the Nine rode the right arm of RHP Cameron Johnson who retired the last 11 batters he faced en route to the complete game shutout. John Marti’s third inning sacrifice fly plated Jake Hertz giving Johnson the only run he would have to work with.

New York Nine 8, Shrub Oak 4 – In a game where there was a twenty mph crosswind, making things difficult for everybody, the Nine jumped out to a short lived four run lead in the bottom of the second as Jeremia Bueno, Hector Coco, CJ McCarthy and John Marti all singled and ultimately crossed the plate ahead of Nick Vella’s two-run double. Winning pitcher RHP John Zapata, was victimized by two wind-aided two-run singles setting up a dramatic fifth inning as time expired. With the score tied, Darien Rivas and Nick Vella singled and stole second and third base respectively. After a strikeout, Aaron Sabato was hit with a two-strike offering to load the bases. Following a critical strikeout for the second out, Bueno’s opposite field grand slam capped the dramatic win for the Nine.

NY Nine 5, Long Island Prospects 1 – In a winner advances pool play finale, the Nine fell behind early. The Nine, however, took the lead 2-1 on Trevor Johnson’s two-run single that scored both CJ McCarthy and Jake Hertz. The Nine put the game away as Hertz and Johnson both scored on Jeremia Bueno’s single ahead of Ryan Popp’s RBI double. RHP Spencer Lodes picked up the victory as the Nine closed pool play 3-0.


Quarterfinals, NY Nine 9, Long Island Storm 3 – RHP Austin Cole battled through early command issues and fell behind in this contest 1-0 with the bases loaded and no one out in the first, but escaped further damage. The Nine offense exploded in the second inning for seven runs. Trevor Johnson finished 2-2 with a run scored and stolen base, Daniel Alfonzo was 1-1 with a walk, single and two runs scored, Nick Vella was 2-2 with a double, single and run scored and Anthony Martinez was 2-2 with a single and mammoth two-run home run to right field giving Cole the victory after five gutsy innings.

Semi-Finals, NY Nine 6, Long Island Titans 0 – The Nine opened the scoring with three runs in the second and tacked on two more in the third and one more in the fourth inning. RHP Ryan Steffens was outstanding spinning five shutout innings as RHP Andrew Pena came on to close the door. Trevor Johnson was 2-3 with a walk, run scored and stolen base, Ryan Popp was 2-4 with a run scored, And Daniel Alfonzo, Jeremia Bueno, Justin Tavaras and Nick Vella all scored for the Nine as they shut out the bracket’s #1 seed.

Finals, NY Nine 10, New Jersey Super 18s 2 – With a first pitch temperature of 37 degrees, and playing in their fourth game of the day, with the first being at 8am, the talented and tired roster dug deep one last time. LHP Matteo Flamio was masterful through the front four innings pitching out of a bases loaded, no out jam in the fourth while LHP Vladimir Baez tossed the fifth frame in the mercy shortened contest against the #2 seed Super 18s. Both Jake Hertz and Anthony Martinez doubled, singled and scored a run. Danny Alfonzo singled and scored a run,Ryan Popp added a 2-RBI triple and scored and Trevor Johnson was 2-2 with a triple, single, two walks and three runs scored.

Tournament Notes

The Nine went 6-0, winning all six games in a two-day span including four victories in fourteen hours. Johnson was named Agostonelli tournament MVP finishing with an .800 average (8-10) with three walks and six runs scored. The Nine scored 39 runs against allowing just 10. Martinez was 6-9 with three extra base hits including a home run. Jeremia Bueno was 10 for 17 (.588) with a grand slam, Nick Vella was 7 for 15 (.467) and Jake Hertz scored 5 runs.

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We Appreciate Your Efforts

We wanted to take the opportunity to thank all of our prospective players who attended our multiple tryout camps over the past few weeks at Blind Brook High School as well as our optional workouts at John Jay HS in Cross River. This year we had a record number of players try out, which means that, unfortunately we had to turn away a record number as well. We want to take a moment and remind potential players that they should continue to put in the hard work and keep your passion for the game. We have had many players who initially did not make a New York Nine roster come back, join us for the winter workouts showing their skill improvements and finding great success in our uniforms. For those whose paths we will cross on the diamond, we look forward to seeing your improvement, even at our expense.

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New York Nine at the Metropolitan Baseball Classic

Three New York Nine standouts recently took part in the invitation only Metropolitan Baseball Classic, played at MCU park in Brooklyn and Hofstra University on Long Island. The tournament was run by the New York Mets Scouting Department. Two of the clubs the Mets sponsored and put together were the Northeast Mets and the National Mets. There were also other top national baseball organizations such as the Evoshield Canes and Chet Lemon’s Juice and FTB, among others.

Senior first baseman and Villanova commit, Ryan Popp, from Brunswick High School and Junior third baseman Daniel Alfonzo anchored the Northeast Mets club. Dartmouth commit Trevor Johnson played center and hit atop the order for the National Mets, which had a lineup loaded with southern based players. When asked about the experience, Johnson stated, “This was a great experience to play against the best competition in the country and also be able to compete in such close games. It was also interesting to see how I stacked up on my own roster with what the Scouts say were the best players from the south.”

Daniel Alfonzo was his typical low-key self saying, “It was really competitive. Most of the pitchers were 90+ MPH. Every day you faced someone who could really throw. This was a great experience, lots of fun. Playing for the Nine helped me get ready for this”. Alfonzo’s run scoring double in the title game helped earn the Northeast Mets the crown.

Popp anchored the Northeast Mets offense hitting cleanup and helping guide them to the championship game. Popp added, “It was an honor and a privilege to have been selected to play for the Northeast Mets two years in a row in the Metropolitan Baseball Classic. It was fun and a great experience to have played with some of the best high school players in the country and many future professional ball players. The coaches were awesome and long term friendships were made on the team. Best of all was our team winning the Metropolitan Baseball Classic for the first time ever.”

New York Nine Roster Spots Available For Top Players

As the fall season approaches we are still looking for select student athletes who fit the New York Nine organization singulair dosage. After reading our fall philosophy, decide if your current program is accomplishing all you need them to do for both your individual growth and development, as well as giving you the proper coaching and scheduling to achieve your collegiate goals. We still have roster space available for players who believe they are performing at the level of the top ten percent of ballplayers in the northeast. If this is you, contact us at to explore an opportunity within the Nine.

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Our Fall Baseball Philosophy

The New York Nine takes a very specific approach when it comes to our fall program. Since the fall of each year holds a different meaning or level of importance at each age, we try to achieve multiple goals within a limited time frame.

First, we are firm believers in the importance of education and achieving high scholastic marks possible, so we do not mandate any midweek activity in the fall, which allows our student athletes to focus on their studies. We are also understanding of fall sports, especially at the younger ages, and we encourage student athletes to be well rounded and participate in other activities. As long as there is communication between player and the coach/organization there are no issues with multi-sport athletes in the fall.

Second, the fall offers extended game looks for all of our participants. The fall offers a multi week snapshot of a players present skills and future projection. All of our players are going to be coached by multiple head coaches from within the organization during the fall season, allowing a fair and solid assessment from a variety of coaches.

Third, each schedule is also specific to the time of year and needs of the specific athlete. At the development age of 14u, we will have a 2 1/2 hour college level practice each weekend, making sure our players are learning the skills needed to successfully play baseball and not just perform at showcases as they get older. There will also be a doubleheader scheduled the other day of the weekend and select tournaments.

At the 16u age group there will be a full slate of weekend doubleheaders along with select tournaments. There will also be showcasing events in which players will be participating in front of many collegiate programs and professional scouts. Select players will participate in the perfect game underclass event in Fort Myers, Florida. Also, we are one of 40 clubs nationwide who are invited to participate in the The Arizona Fall Classic 18u, where over 150 schools and professional scouts attend. Many of our 16u players will be participating at 18u for the fall to test their skill level against more seasoned senior athletes, as well as being regularly assessed by the coaches of our showcase and scout teams.

At 18u, we offer an aggressive schedule against the areas top programs. This allows our players to see where they match up against players from the area. In addition, we have selected a very strong tournament schedule including the Perfect Game Northeast Qualifier (for select players), the Victor Alegretti Fall Showcase, The Arizona Senior Fall Classic, the WWBA Perfect Game National Championships in Jupiter, Florida (if qualified) and the Sal Agostinelli Fall Scout Showcase, among other hand selected events. This premium level of game play and showcasing affords our players multiple looks by the collegiate and professional communities.

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New York Nine Futures Club Wins Blue Chip Summer Challenge Tournament!

The New York Nine Futures went undefeated to win the Blue Chip Summer Challenge at Baseball Heaven. In going 7-0, the Futures team had the highest run differential in the tournament, outscoring the opposition by 41 runs. Congratulations to players and coaches on their hard work and fantastic finish!

To start off the tournament, on July 22, the Future teams defeated Frozen Ropes 4-1 in seven innings. Eric Mini went 2-3 with a double in the first inning and a single in the sixth. Spencer Lodes looked sharp on the mound giving up just one hit, allowing no earned runs while punching out 5 with no walks in his 3 innings of work. Mike Papaleo got it done on the rubber on the way to a win, allowing only a single run in 4 innings.

The next day, the Futures went to Stony Brook and beat Steel Sports 7-2 in seven innings. Michael Gaitan went 1-2 with a triple in the second inning. Steel Sports had no answer for William Gilbert, who allowed a single hit in his 4 innings while striking out 3 and walking none.

July 24th came and the Futures won again. This time by a score of 8-0 against the Diamond Spikes. Tristan Sarcone had a huge day both at the plate and on the mound. He went 2-2 with 2 triples and also threw 5 innings of shutout baseball. Not a single Diamond Spike player got past 2nd base as Sarcone struck out 6 and didn’t walk a single batter.

For the Futures, July 25 was a good as they jumped out to an early lead against the Clue Crabs and never looked back, winning 12-2. The Nine Club scored 8 runs in the first 3 innings putting the game away early. Scoring 12 runs means that a lot of players will have big days and Preston Milano and Eric Mini didn’t disappoint. Milano went 2-3 with 2 RBI and a run scored while Mini went 2-3 with a double, triple and 3 RBI. Matt Hegerty threw 4 innings, struck out 6 and went 2-2 at the plate.

Sunday July 26 saw the Nine play 3 games. First of the day was a tight game into the 6th inning when Michael Mateo drove in the go ahead run in the bottom of the inning. Tristan Sarcone put the dagger into the heart of the New York Knights with a triple in the 6th that put the Nine up 4-1. Rob Rota threw a CG for the win.

In the semi-finals, the Nine exploded in the 5th inning for 9 runs leading to a 14-6 win over the Dutchess Aces. Johnny Archer had a monster game, going 3-3 with 3 doubles and 6 RBI and 3 runs scored. Michael Gaitan chipped in a home run and Eric Mini went 2-3 in the win. Robbie DeBenedictus threw a 5 inning CG.

In the Championship Game, the New York Nine and Frozen Ropes were scoreless through 3 before New York Nine scored 4 in the bottom of the 4th and then Frozen Ropes scored 3 in the top of the 5th to tie it up at 4. In the bottom of the 5th, the Futures broke the tie on an RBI single by Johnny Archer bringing home Mike Papaleo. Preston Milano also got it done with the bat, adding 2 hits and 3 RBI. On the mound, the Nine once again got a fantastic effort by Spencer Lodes, who tossed a CG and struck out 6 while only walking 2.

The New York Nine Organization couldn’t be prouder of the work and effort these athletes put in and once again congratulates all the players and coaches on their tournament win.