Twenty or so Major League Baseball scouts and national cross-checkers were on hand to watch Penn Charter’s Mike Siani play in a recent scrimmage against Mercersburg Academy.
Expect that that number, if not 10 or 15 more, to be the norm this season. With his eye-catching talents, the senior centerfielder and leadoff man is a possible first-round selection in June’s amateur draft.
Siani has a cannon for arm, is a solid gap hitter, extremely quick on the base paths and in the field, and has an exit velocity of about 100 m.p.h. He is also a poised leader, well-liked teammate, and clutch performer.
The 6-foot, 190-pound standout, a four-year starter who committed to Virginia as a freshman, is doing his best to keep all the attention in perspective.
“It’s definitely humbling,” he said. “I’m getting to learn a lot about what goes on in the industry. I’m trying to soak it all in and at the same time stay focused on just going out there and playing.”
Last September, Siani helped spark USA Baseball’s 18-and-under national team to a perfect 9-0 record in World Cup play in Thunder Bay, Canada. He captained the squad, batted about .350, and was named to the all-World team.
Siani and company eased past Korea, 8-0, in the final at Port Arthur Stadium. The shutout victory capped an approximate month-long trip that included trials at USA Baseball’s training complex in Cary, N.C., and the University of Minnesota.
Before joining 79 other elite high school players in vying for a spot on the national squad, Siani participated in the prestigious Area Code Games in Long Beach, Calif. As part of a Northeast region team that represented the New York Yankees and played games in a round-robin format, he was selected the event’s most valuable player.
Siani’s focus now is on attempting to lead Penn Charter to its second straight Inter-Ac League championship and a Pennsylvania Independent Schools Athletic Association (PAISSA) crown. The Quakers went 26-2 overall and 9-1 in league action last year.
Siani is joined in that quest by his two brothers, junior Sammy and freshman Jake. Sammy, a Duke recruit, is a rightfielder and No. 3 hitter; Jake is a relief pitcher. All three are lefthanded throwers and batters.
Mike Siani batted .370 with 35 runs, 30 RBIs, and 17 stolen bases while earning Inquirer first-team all-Southeastern Pennsylvania honors last season.
“He can hit for average, he’s quick, he’s got a great arm, and he’s got ‘game’ speed,” Penn Charter first-year coach Justin Hanley said. “His first step out of the batter’s box and when tracking down a fly ball is impressive.”
In addition to the Sianis, the Quakers are relying heavily on junior leftfielder Demetrius DeRamus, sophomore catcher Gavin Zavorski, junior shortstop-pitcher Tommy Snipes, and senior third baseman-pitcher Will Samuel.
Siani, of Glenside, has received in-home visits from nearly every major-league club. He is being advised by New York’s Excel Sports Management, which represents the likes of Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw and Pirates outfielder Corey Dickerson.
“I’ve always dreamed of playing in the major league,” the 18-year-old said. “We’ll see what happens with the draft. If everything works out the way I hope, I’m certainly open to turning pro right away.”