Home Somerset business Anthony Volpe, top-ranked Yankees prospect, thrilled with All-Star Futures Game, reunion with Jack Leiter

Anthony Volpe, top-ranked Yankees prospect, thrilled with All-Star Futures Game, reunion with Jack Leiter

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Anthony Volpe vividly remembers sitting in the stands with his dad and watching some of his favorite current major league stars at the 2014 All-Star Futures Game in Minnesota. New York Yankees outfielder Joey Gallo and Detroit Tigers shortstop Javier Baez starred in the game. Volpe hoped that one day he would also play in the game.

This day has finally arrived.

On Thursday, it was announced that the 21-year-old shortstop had been selected to the American League roster for the 2022 All-Star Futures Game. The game will take place at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, Calif., on July 16.

“It’s a huge honor,” Volpe said. “I watched the Future Games for [many years]so it’s definitely going to be something I’m going to have to pinch myself to think about but I’m super excited.

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It’s also an indication that Volpe is well on his way to the big leagues. The majority of players who play in the All-Star Futures Game are called up to the 26-man roster at some point in their career. Of the 61 players who participated in the 2013 All-Star Futures Game, 57 of them were called up to the majors.

“We’re all so proud of him, the year he’s had this year has been great,” Patriots manager Dan Fiorito said. “Just seeing him go down there will be a great experience for him to be in the future. [best players] in the game right now.

In the month since, Volpe has slashed .309/.393/.553, a far cry from his .193 batting average at the end of April, making his quick midseason turnaround all the more impressive.

And while success seemingly came naturally for the Yankees’ 2019 first-round pick, this season turned out to be the first time we’ve seen Volpe wrestle on such a big stage. According to Fiorito, breaking out of his early-season funk and earning an All-Star nod was the result of Volpe believing in his own abilities.

“I think it’s so impressive for a 21-year-old to have so much confidence in himself to know that what he’s doing every day is good enough,” Fiorito said. “He never got to a point where he likes, I have to keep changing this and that. He continues to go about his business and sees the results now.

Somerset Patriots shortstop Anthony Volpe (7) throws a ground fly ball and throws to first base for the Double AA baseball game between the Somerset Patriots and Bowie Baysox at TD Bank Ballpark in Bridgewater, NJ on Thursday July 7, 2022 .Scott Faytok | NJ advance media

As the Patriots enter the second half of the season, the Yankees’ No. 1 overall prospect plans to stick to the same strategy that made him an All-Star in the first place.

“There is really nothing that has changed mechanically, and the most important thing was not to change, which would have put me in my head even more. I will just stick to my approach and remain confident.

The excitement of heading to Los Angeles for the All-Star Game is even sweeter for Volpe knowing that former Delbarton teammate Jack Leiter, one of the Texas Rangers’ top pitchers, will join him on the League team. American.

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“We found out a few weeks ago and we’ve been texting each other ever since,” Volpe said. “I’m excited to come out and play shortstop behind him when he throws, it’s going to feel like the good old days.”

Leiter won’t be the only familiar face Volpe will meet in Los Angeles — fellow Yankees prospects Jasson Dominguez, an outfielder, and starting pitcher Ken Waldichuk will compete alongside him on the American League team.

Due to their commitments as professional baseball players, Volpe and Leiter rarely see each other throughout the year. However, even as they pursue their major league dreams, their bond remains as close as it was when they won together at Delbarton High School.

“It’s special, I don’t know many other guys who share that same bond,” Volpe said. “I usually see him in the offseason, but in the season we don’t see each other, so it’s usually on calls and texts. It’s going to be cool to see everyone and get families together and stuff.

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Corey Annan can be reached at cannan@njadvancemedia.com.