USA Baseball has announced the trials rosters for this summer's junior national teams. Here is the release, with the rosters below. . .
DURHAM, N.C.—USA Baseball announced the rosters for its 18U, 16U and 14U National Teams Trials on Monday, signaling the start of the federation’s youth-level National Team programming for 2011.
The 18U program selected 40 players and six alternates following last week’s Tournament of Stars, held at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, N.C. The 16U and 14U programs compiled their trials rosters at the conclusion of the 14U/16U Championships, which ended Saturday in Arizona and Florida. The 16U program named 38 players to trials, while the 14U club selected 39.
“This is always an exciting time of year for us,” said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball Executive Director/CEO. “The Tournament of Stars and 14U/16U Championships once again served as not only premier events, but also effective selection vehicles for our youth-level trials teams.”
The 18U National Team Trials will run from June 27-30, in Cary, N.C., and will conclude with the inaugural Prospect Classic. The two-game series with pit the 18U team against USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team for the first time ever, July 1-2, in Durham and Cary, respectively. From the original trials roster, team officials will choose 28 players to join the club at a second round of trials, to be held Sept. 12-21, in Cary. From there, 20 athletes will be selected to compete in the 2011 COPABE Pan American AAA/18U Championships in Cartagena, Colombia, Sept. 23-Oct. 2. Team USA is the defending champion of the tournament, having defeated Cuba, 6-1, in the 2009 title game.
The 16U and 14U National Team Trials will be held in Cary, Aug. 7-17, and Aug. 1-10, respectively. Of the 38 players chosen for trials, 20 will be selected to the 2011 16U National Team which will compete in the IBAF World AA/16U Youth Championships in Lagos de Moreno, Mexico, Aug. 19-28. The 16U team took home the gold from the 2009 Worlds in Taiwan, and has a 40-game winning streak in international competition overall.
The 14U trials roster will be trimmed down from 39 to 18 heading into the COPABE Pan American A/14U Championships in San Felipe, Venezuela, Aug. 11-22. The U.S. will be looking to improve upon its bronze medal finish in the event last summer.
The USA Baseball 14U, 16U and 18U National Team Trials rosters are as follows (more detailed rosters are available at www.USABaseball.com):
Playing at the Tournament of Stars can be nerve-racking. All eyes (and sometimes a couple dozen radar guns) are on the pitcher and there's a lot on the line, as the players involved are competing for 40 spots on the USA Baseball 18U trials roster.
Righthander Jamie Callahan from Dillon (S.C.) High experienced some of those nerves when he took the hill earlier in the tournament.
"I felt good, better than my start last time when I came in on Friday a little nervous and shaky," Callahan said. "I came in today with all the nerves gone. I waited my time to get back out there and throw in this wonderful environment out here."
Today, was a different story.
Callahan, who stands 6-foot-3 and 195 pounds, threw two perfect innings and racked up five strikeouts. His fastball sat in the 89-92 mph range and he showed a curveball and slider that were distinctly different pitches—and both were very effective.
"When I'm battling there and somebody's fighting off the fastball, I'll come with the slider," Callahan said. "That way it looks like a fastball and then just breaks on them. I like to use the curveball if they take the fastball and then just give them that different look that it's floating up there and then it breaks hard on them."
Callahan, a South Carolina commit, may have carried over the excitement of the Gamecocks winning the night before to the mound with him today.
"I stayed up the whole time and watched it," Callahan said. "It was more nerve-racking than being out there on the mound today."
On the second day of USA Baseball's Tournament of Stars, the game to see was PONY vs. NABF as PONY rolled out three good arms. Righthander Lucas Giolito got the start and did not disappoint.
A physical monster at 6-foot-6, 225 pounds, Giolito attends Harvard-Westlake High in Los Angeles. As a sophomore he was teammates with Austin Wilson, now an outfielder at Stanford. Giolito burst onto the scene before his junior season at the Area Code Games in August of 2010. He was the hardest thrower at the event, touching 96, though he didn't think it was his best outing.
"At Area Codes, I wouldn't say I pitched well," he said. "I threw hard. I guess that's what got a lot of attention. I've grown a lot since then. Now I've become a lot more of a pitcher as opposed to a thrower, mixing up pitches. I got strikeouts with different pitches today—changeup, fastball, curve. As of right now, I have a lot of confidence and I'm feeling pretty good." [...] Continue Reading »
Several big arms took the mound today at the first day of USA Baseball's Tournament of Stars and righthander Carson Fulmer from All Saints' Academy in Winter Haven, Fla. was one of the standouts. He admitted to being a little nervous on the mound, but it sure didn't show.
"You have butterflies at first because coming here, you really don't know what to expect," Fulmer said. "But, once you go out there and loosen up and get a feel for things and get in that rhythm, you get comfortable and just pitch. I felt great today."
It was the hitters that should have had butterflies. Fulmer—who stands 6-foot-1 and 190 pounds—showed a fastball in the 92-95 mph range and a 78-79 mph slider. He also threw one 85 mph changeup. Fulmer said the big velocity isn't something new for him—he said that's how he was throwing last spring, too—but it isn't what he focuses on. [...] Continue Reading »
USA Baseball's Tournament of Stars gets underway Wednesday morning at the National Training Complex in Cary, N.C. The event serves as a tryout of sorts for the 18U National Team. This year's team will travel to Cartagena, Colombia in September for the COPABE Pan Am 'AAA' Championships. There are eight teams in the tournament, represented by seven of the National Member Organizations and an at-large team, put together by USA Baseball. The organizations represented are AABC, American Legion, Babe Ruth, Dixie, NABF, PONY and RBI. Seven first-round picks in the 2011 draft participated in the 2010 Tournament of Stars: Bubba Starling, Francisco Lindor, Brandon Nimmo, Tyler Beede, Joe Ross, Blake Swihart and Robert Stephenson.
Baseball America will be on-site covering the event. Here are a couple quick notes about each team's roster:
AABC: Vahn Bozoian is a long-limbed outfielder from Ayala High in Chino Hills, Calif. He has power from the right side, but his long levers lend to questions about his ability to hit. He has one of the strongest throwing arms in this draft class. . . Joey Gallo hit 25 home runs this spring, leading Las Vegas' Bishop Gorman High to a sixth-straight state title. He's no stranger to the showcase circuit, but hasn't quite lived up to expectations yet. However, he has recently taken to pitching where he shows easy velocity in the low 90s. . . David Thompson broke Prince Fielder's career home run record in Florida—during his junior year. He is a corner infielder with big power and also excels as a quarterback. . . The best arms on this team appear to be righthander Jamie Callahan from Dillon (S.C.) High and lefthander Hunter Virant from Camarillo (Calif.) High. Callahan sits 88-90 mph with a good changeup and curveball and Virant sits in the low 90s and already throws four pitches despite this being his first year on the mound.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Nominations will only be accepted from varsity coaches.
It's time for Baseball America to begin collecting candidates for the postseason All-America teams and we need help from coaches. We name three teams of players and include their statistics. Coaches can send nominations to firstname.lastname@example.org. Put "2011 All-America Nomination" in the subject line and include your name, school, contact info, the player's name, position, class and stats. Please make sure information is complete.
Here are a few things that will help us and hopefully answer any questions you have: [...] Continue Reading »
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