Caleb Lomavita develops into a quality catcher at Cal

Caleb Lomavita spent his high school summers playing in California and Arizona with his travel baseball club, TB SoCal. The experiences he gained playing against quality high school talent aided the Hawaii native’s transition to the NCAA Division I level.

After starring as a two-way player to earn Hawaii Gatorade Player of the Year as a high school senior, Lomavita joined the California Golden Bears and instantly earned a spot in the team’s starting lineup.

Lomavita, a catcher, has thrived in his first two years at Cal. As he prepares for his junior season, Lomavita is one of the top players in the country. Scouts project the talented catcher as a potential early-round pick in the 2024 MLB draft.

“I take a step back and look how I’ve developed every day,” Lomavita said. “It’s a true blessing. I never thought I’d make it this far. I always wanted to play baseball at the highest level, and now, being so close to taking it to another level, you can almost taste it. It’s something I’ve always wanted. I’m blessed with the people around me who have helped me reach this point.”

Lomavita has been a mainstay in Cal’s lineup since his freshman year in 2022. He hit .272 with 10 doubles, seven home runs and 46 RBIs in 232 at-bats in his first year. He improved his plate discipline, especially against sliders in the dirt, to post a .316 batting average with 13 doubles, 16 home runs and 43 RBIs in 206 at-bats last season.

Lomavita is a 5-foot-11, 200-pound right-handed hitting catcher with simple mechanics and a short, quick swing that allows him to drive the ball with authority. He has improved his contact skills and approach in his first two years to go along with quality power potential.

Scouts rave about Lomavita’s ability at the plate and believe he has plenty of potential, especially as his plate discipline and pitch recognition continue to improve.

“As you go along this baseball journey, you tend to put pressure on yourself because the stage is set, and it’s bigger than before,” Lomavita said. “Controlling myself and my emotions and taking it like a game in the backyard really helps me. That is a big strength of mine.”

Defensively, Lomavita has made notable strides behind the plate. He bounced around the diamond during his high school career. As a freshman, he became an everyday catcher, displaying plenty of promise due to his athleticism and above-average arm strength.

He worked on his blocking and receiving skills in the fall in preparation for the spring season.

“My defense has developed tremendously,” Lomavita said. “I have a great catching coach here in Chad Highberger. He has helped me since I stepped foot on campus. I didn’t really understand catching when I got here. I was primarily a pitcher, center fielder, and infielder when I got here. He let me catch a lot. My experience in the Cape Cod League and with my staff has also helped me grow.”

Caleb Lomavita
Caleb Lomavita and coach Chad Highberger courtesy of Robert Edwards of Cal Athletics.

Lomavita enters his junior season as Cal’s top player. He will serve as a team leader for the Golden Bears, who hope to qualify for the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2019.

Last year, the Golden Bears posted a 24-28 record, including a 12-18 record in Pac-12 Conference play.

The Golden Bears have qualified for the NCAA Tournament just twice since advancing to the College World Series in 2011. This season, the Golden Bears believe they have the talent and experience to qualify for the postseason. Besides Lomavita, Cal also returns outfielder Rodney Green, a potential early-round pick in July’s draft.

“That is the goal every year to make the NCAA Tournament,” Lomavita said. “We take every day like a College World Series rep. We put ourselves in that mindset. If we make it there, it should be another day. It would mean a lot for us to make the NCAA Tournament, especially for the coaches. They see a lot of potential in us. It would mean a lot to see our hard work pay off.”

Read more in-depth stories on top 2024 MLB draft prospects at Baseball Prospect Journal.

Video of Caleb Lomavita.

Dan Zielinski III has covered the MLB draft for nine years. He has interviewed 518 of the top draft prospects in that period, including four No. 1 overall picks. Multiple publications, including Baseball America, USA Today,, The Arizona Republic and The Dallas Morning News, have quoted his work, while he has appeared on radio stations as a “MLB draft expert.” Follow him on Twitter @DanZielinski3.

Dan Zielinski III
Dan Zielinski III
Dan Zielinski III is the creator of the Baseball Prospect Journal and has covered the MLB draft since 2015. His draft work originally appeared on, a sports website he started in December 2011. He also covered the Milwaukee Brewers as a member of the credentialed media for four years. Follow him on Twitter @DanZielinski3.

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