One of the best pitching matchups of the season takes place Saturday at Provident Bank Park in Pomona, N.Y., where a pair of National Player of the Year candidates, Rob Kaminsky and Mike Shawaryn, will square off.
The two have remarkably similar resumes. Kaminsky, the state player of the year from St. Joseph Regional, is 6-0 on the season and has yet to give up an earned run. Meanwhile Shawaryn, of New Jersey's top-ranked Gloucester Catholic, is 4-0 with a 0.00 ERA.
The two New Jersey pitchers highlight this week's list of National Player of the Year contenders, which also includes a third pitcher, Carlos Salazar of Kerman, who has yet to allow an earned run this year.
MaxPreps National Baseball Player of the Year Watch
Tres Barrera, Sharyland (Mission, Texas)
The Rattlers are ranked No. 6 in the nation thanks to the play of Barrera, who is hitting .532 with 42 hits, 38 RBIs, 12 doubles, three triples and four home runs.
Derik Beauprez, Cherry Creek (Greenwood Village, Colo.)
Beauprez has been on fire of late, hitting three home runs last week and going 4-for-4 against Smoky Hill on Tuesday. He's batting .444 with 15 RBIs, three doubles and four home runs in just 36 at-bats. He's also 1-0 on the mound.Nick Ciuffo, Lexington (S.C.)
The senior catcher has led Lexington to a 22-4 record and a No. 1 ranking among South Carolina 4A schools. After going hitless in Lexington's first game of the season, Ciuffo has a base hit in his last 25 games while racking up a .507 batting average with 25 RBIs, seven doubles and four home runs.Dominic Smith, Serra (Gardena, Calif.)
Considered one of the top contact hitters in the senior class, Smith is batting .480 for Serra, which is 20-5 on the season. He has 22 runs, 24 RBIs, five doubles, three triples and five home runs.Kohl Stewart, St. Pius X (Houston)
Expected to be a star on the mound this year, Stewart has been more effective at the plate as he is among the national leaders with 10 home runs. He is batting .375 with 30 RBIs and four doubles. He's only thrown 26 innings this season, but he is 3-1 with 36 strikeouts and seven walks.Rob Kaminsky, St. Joseph Regional (Montvale, N.J.)
The state player of the year as a junior, Kaminsky has been tremendous during his senior season. Besides posting a 6-0 record with one no-hitter, he has yet to allow an earned run. He's given up just 13 hits in 32 innings while striking out 63, including 16 in a win over Wayne Hills.Mike Shawaryn, Gloucester Catholic (N.J.)
After missing most of last season due to injury, Shawaryn has been practically unhittable for Gloucester Catholic this year. In 27 innings, he is 4-0 and has not allowed a run. He has given up seven hits and walked only six while striking out 45.Carlos Salazar, Kerman (Calif.)
The Fresno State-bound pitcher is 8-1 on the season with 104 strikeouts in 55 innings. He has yet to allow an earned run and has only allowed 15 base hits. He's had double-digit strikeouts six times with a high of 14.Cavan Biggio, St. Thomas Catholic (Houston)
The son of former MLB standout Craig Biggio, who is also the St. Thomas Catholic coach, Cavan leads his team with 33 RBIs and 33 runs scored while batting .405. He's got seven doubles and seven home runs on the season and has St. Thomas Catholic at 24-6.Alex Jackson, Rancho Bernardo (San Diego)
The junior catcher was an All-American as a sophomore after hitting 17 home runs. He's among the national leaders in home runs again this year with 10 while batting .365 with 25 RBIs and 40 runs scored for the Broncos, who are 22-3 on the season.