CARY, N.C. – USA Baseball today announced that 10 USA Baseball national team alumni and 20 total development program participants were awarded 2022 Gatorade Player of the Year awards for baseball in their respective states. The award is given to the nation’s most outstanding high school talents for their athletic development, academic excellence, and exemplary character.
“We are extremely proud of our twenty alumni and development program participants for earning Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year honors to cap off their high school baseball careers,” said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball’s Executive Director and CEO. “Our goal as the national governing body for baseball is to identify premier athletes and contribute to their growth through our events, programs, and national teams. Witnessing these young athletes being honored with an award like this reinforces that we are succeeding in our goals and positively influencing their ongoing development.”
Highlighting the national team alumni on the list is gold medalist Logan Saloman. Saloman was named Arizona’s Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year three years after winning the World Baseball Softball (WBSC) U-15 Baseball World Cup Americas Qualifier in 2019. En route to gold, he struck out 16 batters in his 12 innings of work and finished with a 1-0 record after making three appearances on the mound for the stars and stripes.
Of the 10 alumni, nine were members of the 2021 18U National Team that went 5-1-1 in an international friendship series against Canada: Joe Allen (New Hampshire), Gavin Guidry (Louisiana), Jackson Holliday (Oklahoma), Walker Jenkins (North Carolina), Druw Jones (Georgia), Mike Kennedy (New York), Paxton Kling (Pennsylvania), Blake Mitchell (Texas), and Owen Murphy (Illinois). The U.S. outscored Canada 60-11 last summer, tallying 23 extra-base hits and holding a minuscule 1.53 team ERA in the seven-game series in Florida.
In addition to their national team experiences, all 10 national team alums have also participated in a USA Baseball development program event. Jenkins, Mitchell, and Saloman were members of a National Team Development Program (NTDP) roster in their careers and are joined by fellow NTDP participants Maxwell Clark (Indiana) and Malcolm Moore (California) on the list of Gatorade State Baseball Players of the Year. The USA Baseball NTDP offers athletes an opportunity to connect with USA Baseball staff to better prepare for a future national team experience. The program includes skill development sessions, off-field education seminars, and intrasquad Stars vs. Stripes games to assist in the development of the athletes as both a player and a person.
Allen, Guidry, Holliday, Jones, Kennedy, Kling, Moore, and Murphy all participated in the 2021 PDP League last year as part of the broader Major League Baseball and USA Baseball Prospect Development Pipeline (PDP). The event is an invitation-based development and assessment opportunity for high school players eligible for the following year’s MLB Draft. It provides athletes with an unprecedented amateur experience, including competitive gameplay, player development sessions, educational seminars, and additional programming to prepare players for a professional baseball career. Their fellow teammates Caden Dana (New Jersey), Cooper Dossett (Arkansas), Karson Milbrandt (Missouri), Drew Nelson (Alabama), Brock Porter (Michigan), JR Ritchie (Washington), Matt Scott (Connecticut), and Tristan Smith (South Carolina) also earned Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year honors after participating the in 2021 PDP League.
Additionally, 26 of the Gatorade State Baseball Players of the Year have competed in a USA Baseball identification event or the National High School Invitational (NHSI). The 2022 NHSI featured five eventual winners, including champion Roman Anthony (Marjory Stoneman Douglas; Florida), Dana (Don Bosco Prep; New Jersey), Seth Keller (Hanover; Virginia), Dallas Macias (Regis Jesuit; Colorado), and Saloman (Hamilton; Arizona).
Twenty of the award recipients have played in a USA Baseball National Team Championship (seven in Arizona and 15 in North Carolina) while nine were selected to their region team and played in the USA Baseball National Team Identification Series Champions Cup.
Seventeen of the award recipients have played in the USA Baseball National Team Championships in North Carolina.
For more information on the Gatorade Player of the Year award, visit the official website at Gatorade.com/POY.
The complete list of USA Baseball national team alumni, development program, and event participants who were named 2022 Gatorade State Baseball Players of the Year is as follows:
GATORADE STATE BASEBALL PLAYERS OF THE YEAR x NATIONAL TEAM ALUMNI AND DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM PARTICIPANTS
(State: Name; USA Baseball national team/development program)
- Alabama: Drew Nelson; 2021 PDP League
- Arizona: Logan Saloman*; 2018 14U NTDP, 2019 15U National Team
- Arkansas: Cooper Dossett; 2021 PDP League
- California: Malcolm Moore; 2019 16U NTDP, 2021 PDP League
- Connecticut: Matt Scott; 2021 PDP League
- Georgia: Druw Jones*; 2021 PDP League, 2021 18U National Team
- Illinois: Owen Murphy*; 2021 PDP League, 2021 18U National Team
- Indiana: Maxwell Clark; 2021 16U/17U NTDP
- Louisiana: Gavin Guidry*; 2021 PDP League, 2021 18U National Team
- Michigan: Brock Porter; 2021 PDP League
- Missouri: Karson Milbrandt; 2021 PDP League
- New Hampshire: Joe Allen*; 2021 PDP League, 2021 18U National Team
- New Jersey: Caden Dana; 2021 PDP League
- New York: Mike Kennedy*; 2021 PDP League, 2021 18U National Team
- North Carolina: Walker Jenkins*; 2021 16U/17U NTDP, 2021 18U National Team
- Oklahoma: Jackson Holliday*; 2021 PDP League, 2021 18U National Team
- Pennsylvania: Paxton Kling*; 2021 PDP League, 2021 18U National Team
- South Carolina: Tristan Smith; 2021 PDP League
- Texas: Blake Mitchell*; 2021 16U/17U NTDP, 2021 18U National Team
- Washington: JR Ritchie; 2021 PDP League
*denotes USA Baseball National Team alumni
GATORADE STATE BASEBALL PLAYERS OF THE YEAR x USA BASEBALL EVENTS PARTICIPANTS
(State: Name; USA Baseball event)
- Alabama; Drew Nelson; Champs North Carolina
- Arizona; Logan Saloman; Champs Arizona, NHSI, NTIS
- Arkansas; Cooper Dossett; Champs Arizona, NTIS
- California; Malcolm Moore; Champs Arizona
- Colorado; Dallas Macias; Champs North Carolina, NHSI, NTIS
- Florida; Roman Anthony; Champs North Carolina, NHSI
- Hawaii; Nu'u Contrades; Champs Arizona
- Illinois; Owen Murphy; Champs North Carolina
- Maryland; Chris Hacopian; Champs North Carolina
- Michigan; Brock Porter; Champs North Carolina
- Mississippi; Dakota Jordan; Champs North Carolina
- Nevada; Robby Snelling; Champs Arizona, Champs North Carolina
- New York; Mike Kennedy; Champs North Carolina
- Pennsylvania; Paxton Kling; Champs North Carolina
- South Carolina; Tristan Smith; Champs North Carolina
- Tennessee; Dylan Loy; Champs North Carolina
- Texas; Blake Mitchell; Champs North Carolina, NTIS
- Utah; Luke Anderson; Champs Arizona
- Washington; JR Ritchie; Champs Arizona, Champs North Carolina
- Wisconsin; Mitch Voit; Champs North Carolina