For the second consecutive year, the 15U National Team Trials featured two phases and included 72 athletes. Phase I began on July 28 and featured six exhibition games before the roster was trimmed to 34 players for Phase II, which began on August 1.
"We are very excited about our 20-man roster," 15U National Team Manager Jason Maxwell said. "The coaches and staff have spent countless hours evaluating these players and feel that we have the right 20 players to go to Panama and compete for the World Championship and bring home the gold medal."
"As expected, there were some difficult decisions that had to be made during the Trials process and we are very grateful for all of the players that participated in Phase 1 and Phase 2," Maxwell continued. "The players made great impressions on all of us and showed why they are considered the best players in our country in their age division. We are looking forward to competing in Panama while representing the USA and our families with pride and dignity."
Davis Diaz (Pittsburg, Calif.) and Josh Hartle (King, N.C.) will compete on the 15U team for the second consecutive year after winning a gold medal at the COPABE Pan Am "AA" Championships in 2017, and are two of eight national team alumni to be selected to the roster.
Twelve athletes will make their national team debut in 2018, including Luke Leto (Portage, Mich.) and Tyree Reed (Vallejo, Calif.), who participated in the 14U NTDP last year. In total, 10 members of the 2018 roster have trained within the USA Baseball National Team Development Program.
Joseph Brown (Petaluma, Calif.) and Karson Bowen (Anaheim Hills, Calif.) were named to the 15U National Team roster after earning an invitation to the 15U Trials following their performance at the 2018 14U National Team Development Program (NTDP). This is second consecutive year two members of the NTDP were selected to the 15U team roster.
Two athletes involved in the Major League Baseball and USA Baseball diversity pipeline will don the red, white and blue for the first time in their careers in 2018. Christian Little (University City, Mo.) and Ryan Spikes (Covington, Ga.) have participated in development and instructional opportunities in this joint effort at one or more of the Breakthrough Series, DREAM Series and the Elite Development Invitational events. This program affords participants consistent on-field growth opportunities both in competitive and non-competitive settings.
Athletes selected for 15U National Team identification are chosen from the 15U National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida, the 2017 14U National Team Identification Series (NTIS), the 14U NTDP and recommendations from professional scouts and college and high school coaches.
The 2018 15U National Team will remain in Cary for training from August 4-7 at the National Training Complex. The team will play three exhibition games beginning Sunday, August 5. On Monday, August 6 and Tuesday, August 7, the 15U team will face off against USA Baseball 16U NTDP squads and both games will be streamed live on USABaseball.com, Facebook Live and YouTube.
Following the exhibitions, Team USA will travel to Panama to compete for its first-ever U-15 world championship at the WBSC U-15 Baseball World Cup.
Continue to follow @USABaseball15U on Twitter for the most up-to-date news about the 15U National Team.
2018 USA Baseball 15U National Team
Roster Name, Position, Hometown, School, Class
*^Karson Bowen, C/UTIL, Anaheim Hills, Calif., Orange Lutheran, 2022
*^Joe Brown, C/UTIL, Petaluma, Calif., Petaluma, 2022
*^Ryan Clifford, OF/INF, Raleigh, N.C., Leesville, 2022
Justin Colon, INF/RHP, Carolina, P.R., Montverde, 2021
*^Davis Diaz, INF, Pittsburg, Calif., Acalanes, 2021
*^Thomas DiLandri, OF/RHP, Las Vegas, Nev., Bishop Gorman, 2021
Sam Dutton, RHP, Rainbow City, Ala., Westbrook Christian, 2021
*^Josh Hartle, LHP/INF, King, N.C., Ronald Reagan, 2021
*^Brady House, INF/RHP, Winder, Ga., Winder-Barrow, 2021
Cale Lansville, RHP, Denver, Colo., Thunder Ridge, 2021
^Luke Leto, RHP/UTIL, Portage, Mich., Portage Central, 2021
Christian Little, RHP, University City, Mo., Christian Brothers, 2021
Rheego McIntosh, RHP, Temecula, Calif., Chaparral, 2021
Andrew Painter, RHP, Pompano Beach, Fla., Calvary Christian, 2021
^Tyree Reed, OF, Vallejo, Calif., Will C Wood, 2021
Charlie Saum, C, Ventura, Calif., St. Bonaventure, 2021
*^Cody Schrier, INF, San Clemente, Calif., J Serra, 2021
Ryan Spikes, INF/RHP, Covington, Ga., Alcovy, 2021
Timothy Williams, LHP, Shenandoah, Va., Page County, 2021
Gage Ziehl, RHP, Penfield, N.Y., Penfield, 2021
*denotes national team alumnus
^denotes national team development program participant