Colorado Spotlight: Cale Lansville, RHP, San Jacinto JC

Cale Lansville found himself with a tough decision to make right around Thanksgiving, he could stay with LSU, pretty close to the unanimous number one ranked team ahead of this college baseball season or he could transfer to San Jacinto Junior College, a top ten ranked JuCo in the country. In the end Lansville chose to head down to Houston, Texas and join Jan Jacinto as he knew that is where he would find the most innings this season.

A graduate of ThunderRidge High School in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, Cale is the second of three Lansville boys to go through the Grizzlies program. His older brother Reese spent the beginning of his college career at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock before transferring home to go to Metro State University here in Denver for the 2023 season. His younger brother, Brock, is currently a Junior pitcher for ThunderRidge and is scheduled to play for the Kansas Jayhawks come 2025.

Going into the 2021 season, Lansville was among the best high school pitchers in the country. He was being scouted by many Major League Baseball teams ahead of the MLB draft. Ultimately, Cale informed teams he wanted to honor his commitment to LSU and effectively removed his name from consideration in the draft and focused on getting to work with the LSU Tigers.

While at LSU, Lansville pitched just six innings over five appearances before his season was cut short with a shoulder injury. He underwent surgery to repair a Bennett Lesion and has now recovered fully. When speaking about his time out due to injury and whether or not he let it get him down he stated “my love for the game, my passion for the game and, although I wasn’t out there pitching, I felt like my experience still grew.”

Lansville did manage to make the SEC First-Year Academic Honor Roll while in Baton Rouge. His best outing with the Tigers was a two inning performance against Louisiana Tech, when he went two scoreless innings while striking out three and not surrendering a single hit. 

After missing most of his Freshman season, Lansville watched as an already talented LSU program went out and added one of the best pitchers in the country, Air Force transfer Paul Skenes. As well as another highly touted arm coming off an injury of his own, Thatcher Hurd from UCLA. The Tigers also added a talented class of freshman headlined by Chase Shores and Jaden Noot. 

Despite more competition coming in at his position, Lansville didn’t let it get him down, instead saying “it was exciting to see what Jay (Johnson), and Coach Wes (Johnson), and Coach (Josh) Jordan were able to do in the transfer portal…I want to be around and grow and compete with the best and I was just excited and eager for the opportunity.“

Now, with San Jacinto and fully healthy again, Lansville looks to be a key arm on one of the most talented junior college programs in the country. Ultimately his decision to leave LSU and move down to Houston was because “the ultimate plan for me is I wanted to develop, grow as a pitcher and the way I was gonna do that was to get a large amount of innings.”

When asked if he has his eyes set on coming back to Colorado for the JuCo World Series in Grand Junction this May, he showed his focus by saying “I think the biggest thing for me is keeping a good perspective on what I can do now and being present each day and just fight that battle each day to be where my feet are“ but did eventually state “I think when the puzzle pieces come together I will look up and we will be there.“

San Jacinto are certainly favorites to make it to Grand Junction with a potential rotation that features Lansville along with two other top 50 JuCo arms in Jean Paul Ramos and Titan Hayes. They also have a top 20 bat in Jake Bennett and 10 of the top 150 JuCo players this season according to Prep Baseball Report

On the mound, Lansville is a power throwing righty with a fastball, change, curve, slider, and newly added cutter giving him as diverse an arsenal of pitches as any at the college level. Coming out of high school, his best secondary offering, per many, was his curveball, but he admitted even then his favorite pitch was actually his slider. Two years later, that slider is now widely considered his best pitch, but that hasn’t come at the detriment of his other pitches. When discussing his slider he stated “it has a lot of depth on it, but ultimately I try to spin it like a bullet.”

Now in the Junior College ranks, Lansville is again eligible for the MLB draft but that is far from his primary focus. Instead his focus is his development as a pitcher and helping San Jacinto succeed to the best of his ability, which he has done by striking out 16 hitters in 8 innings for the Ravens in his first two appearances this season. 

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