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Stars are ready to shine for Suffolk, Nassau in RTC Grand Slam Challenge

Matt Vogel of Patchogue-Medford pitches in a game.

Matt Vogel of Patchogue-Medford pitches in a game. Credit: George A. Faella

The Long Island area was pitching-rich this spring. Pro baseball scouts were visible throughout the season as more than a few power arms grabbed their attention.

Scouts frequented Patchogue-Medford, Riverhead, Dix Hills and Setauket to get a good look at the area's top four prospects.

Long Island baseball fans will have the opportunity to see all four of those prospects pitch for the Suffolk senior all-star team when they meet the Nassau stars on June 7 in the 8th Annual RTC Grand Slam Challenge at Farmingdale State College at 7:30 p.m.

Matt Vogel of Patchogue-Medford, Matt Crohan of Riverhead, Stephen Woods of Half Hollow Hills East and Anthony Kay of Ward Melville will pitch for Suffolk's stars, led by Hills West coach Tom Migliozzi in a game to raise funds to help find a cure for Lupus.

"This is the best pitching staff this game has ever seen," said Migliozzi, a former pitcher in the Texas Rangers organization. "We had an unbelievable amount of talent on the hill this year. This is a staff worthy of any college in the country. And they're getting plenty of attention from major-league organizations."

The Suffolk stars will also have some big bats in the lineup with former Silver Slugger Award winner Luke Stampfl, League II MVP Dan Hetzel, and former League II MVP Casey Baker.

The Nassau stars will be managed by Clarke coach Tom Abruscato, who won his 300th game this season. Nassau counters Suffolk's pitching staff with some big swingers in Hofstra-bound Joe Fusco of Clarke and Valley Stream North shortstop Anthony Martelli, who led Long Island with nine home runs this season.

"The Suffolk stars dominated this game for a few years but we surprised them last year," Abruscato said. "We have talent in this county also."

Abruscato also has power-hitting Patrick Madigan of Holy Trinity, who will play at Northeastern, and CHSAA Player of the Year Dan Hopkins of St. Dominic. "Our guys will come out swinging against the best collection of arms we've ever seen," Abruscato said. "That'll just add some more atmosphere to a game that's become very popular."

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