USA BASEBALL NEWS

17U NTDP

USA Baseball Announces 2017 17U NTDP Roster

July 3, 2017

DURHAM, N.C. -- USA Baseball announced the final 40-man roster for the 2017 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP) on Monday, following the conclusion of the 17U National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida. The weeklong 17U National Team Development Program will be held in Chicago, Ill., from July 22-29.

The National Team Development Program offers identified 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 a person and a player.

Nine of the 40 invitees are alumni of the 2016 15U National Team that won the silver medal at the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) U-15 World Cup in Japan, and two invitees won a gold medal with the 2015 15U National Team at the COPABE Pan Am "AA" Championships in Aguascalientes, Mexico.

In total, twelve USA Baseball alumni will participate in this year's 17U NTDP, including three members of the inaugural USA Baseball 2013 12U National Team that won the International Baseball Federation (IBAF) World Championship in Taipei City, Tiapei.

Overall, eight of the invited athletes have participated in the USA Baseball National Team Development Program previously, including two athletes returning to the 17U NTDP for the second consecutive year.

2010 USA Baseball Rod Dedeaux Coach of the Year, Eric Kibler, has been selected to lead the staff as the field coordinator for the second consecutive year and fourth time overall.

Jeff Kunkel and 2017 18U National Team assistant coach Gregg Ritchie will join Kibler as additional evaluators.

Players are selected for the National Team Development Program based on their participation and performance at USA Baseball events. Recommendations from professional scouts, USA Baseball task force members and collegiate, high school and youth coaches at USA Baseball events play a role in the selection process for the National Team Development Program.

The USA Baseball National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida serve as the primary identification event for the National Team Development Programs.

For more information on the National Team Development Program please visit USABaseball.com.

The roster for the 17U National Team Development Program is as follows:

Name; Position; Hometown
CJ Abrams; IF; Alpharetta, Ga.
*^Matthew Allan; RHP; Sanford, Fla.
Isaiah Bennett; RHP; Fayetteville, N.C.
Cooper Benson; LHP; San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Jason Brandow; OF; Napa, Calif.
*Coleman Brigman; OF; San Jose, Calif.
Charles Burroughs; C; Mechanicsville, Md.
*Christian Cairo; IF; Clearwater, Fla.
Michael Carpentier; C; Highland, Cailf.
Dylan Carter; OF; Flower Mound, Texas (added July 5, 2017)
*^Joseph Charles; RHP; Celebration, Fla.
Nolan Crisp; RHP; McDonough, Ga.
Raynel Delgado; IF; Miami Lakes, Fla.
*Cade Doughty; IF/OF; Denham Springs, La.
^Riley Greene; OF; Oviedo, Fla. (no longer attending)
^Joshua Hahn; LHP; Huntington Beach, Calif.
Ethan Hearn; C; Mobile, Ala.
Rece Hinds; IF; Niceville, Fla.
^Jake Holland; C; Miramar, Fla.
Spencer Jones; LHP; Encinitas, Calif.
Dutch Landis; RHP; Henderson, Nev.
Grant Leader; RHP; La Grange Park , Ill.
Michael Limoncelli; IF; Elmira, N.Y.
*Zachary Martinez; RHP; Peoria, Ariz.
Victor Mederos; RHP; Miami, Fla.
Ian Mejia; RHP; Sahuarita , Ariz.
*^Joseph Naranjo; LHP/IF; Chino, Calif.
Conagher Sands; IF; Bakersfield , Calif.
*Wesley Scott; RHP; Riverside, Calif.
Blake Shapen; IF; Shreveport, La.
Sam Siani; OF; Glenside, Pa.
Jamir Simpson; OF; Evansville, Ind.
Josh Spiegel; C; Jeannette , Pa.
Matthew Thompson; RHP; Cypress, Texas
*Anthony Volpe; IF; Watchung, N.J.
*Brandon Walker; RHP; Tallahassee, Fla.
Stephen Wilmer; OF; Sarasota , Fla.
Bobby Witt, Jr.; IF; Colleyville, Texas
*^Nate Wohlgemuth; RHP; Owasso, Okla.
Jaden Woodson; IF/OF; Dallas, Texas
*^Carter Young; IF/C; Selah, Wash.

*National Team Alumnus
^National Team Development Program Participant

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17U NTDP

USA Baseball Announces 2018 17U National Team Development Program Roster

July 3, 2018

CARY, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the 42-man 2018 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP) roster on Tuesday, following the conclusion of the 17U National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida. The weeklong 17U NTDP will be held in Chicago, Illinois, from July 22-26.

The National Team Development Program offers identified 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 a person and a player.

"The 2018 17U National Team Development Program is a great opportunity for players to get a jump on competing for a spot on the 18U National Team in 2019," said Matt Blood, USA Baseball 18U National Team Director. "I am excited about the overall level of talent on this year's roster. Our coaching staff and game schedule is going to provide an amazing experience for the student athletes in attendance."

The roster is made up of 42 athletes who were identified and selected based on their participation and performance at USA Baseball sanctioned events, including the National Team Championships and the National Team Identification Series (NTIS), among others. In total, 11 athletes have played on a USA Baseball national team and 11 past NTDP participants are on the roster. Twenty-eight of the invited athletes are new to the USA Baseball national team pool in 2018.

Five of the 42 invitees are alumni of the 2017 15U National Team that won a gold medal at the COPABE Pan American "AA" Championships in Colombia, while an additional five players were members of the 2016 15U National Team that won bronze at the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) U-15 Baseball World Cup.

Yohandy Morales (Miami, Fla.), Carson Tucker (Phoenix, Ariz.) and Anthony Volpe (Watchung, N.J.), were all members of the inaugural 12U National Team that won gold at the 2013 International Baseball Federation (IBAF) World Championships in Taipei City, Taipei, and will be reunited at the 2018 17U NTDP in Chicago.

In addition, Carter Young (Selah, Wash.), who was a member of the 2017 18U National Team that won Team USA's fourth consecutive WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup gold medal, is returning to the 17U NTDP for the second year in a row in 2018.

Four additional members of the 2017 17U NTDP are returning to the program in 2018, and overall, 11 of the invited athletes have participated in the USA Baseball National Team Development Program previously.

Pete Crow-Armstrong (Sherman Oaks, Calif.) and Masyn Winn (Kingwood, Texas) have been teammates for their entire Team USA careers, appearing on the 2014 12U National Team, 2016 14U NTDP and 2017 15U National Team together.

American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) Hall of Famer Jack Leggett will serve as the field coordinator for the event after coaching in 2017. Ricky Meinhold and Gregg Ritchie will join Leggett on the staff and serve as additional evaluators for the event.

For more information on the National Team Development Program please follow @USABaseballNTDP on Twitter or visit USABaseball.com.

2018 17U National Team Development Program
Name; Position; Hometown
Mick Abel; RHP; Portland, Ore.
*^Nelson Berkwich; LHP; Boca Raton, Fla.
Drew Bowser; IF; Woodland Hills, Calif.
*Alek Boychuk; C; Buford, Ga.
Enrique Bradfield; OF; Hialeah, Fla.
Jack Bulger; C; Bowie, Md.
Max Carlson; RHP; Savage, Minn.
Gavin Casas; IF; Pembroke Pines, Fla.
Kellum Clark; IF; Brandon, Miss.
Nate Clow; IF; Federal Way, Wash.
*^Dylan Crews; OF; Longwood, Fla.
*^Pete Crow-Armstrong; OF; Sherman Oaks, Calif.
Jamar Fairweather; IF; Cutler Bay, Fla.
Brandon Fields; OF; Orlando, Fla.
Dax Fulton; LHP; Oklahoma City, Okla.
Alex Greene; RHP/OF; Edgewater, Md.
Austin Hendrick; OF; Oakdale, Pa.
Macauley Horvath; RHP/IF; Rochester, Minn.
*^Jared Jones; RHP/OF; Whittier, Calif.
Colten Keith
Jared Kelley; RHP; Refugio, Texas
Christian Knapczyk; IF; Plainfield, Ill.
Avery Mabe; RHP; Wytheville, Va.
Nolan McLean; IF; Willow Spring, N.C.
^Victor Mederos; RHP; Miami, Fla.
*Yohandy Morales; IF; Miami, Fla.
^Aaron Nixon; IF; Mission, Texas
Liam Norris; LHP; Cary, N.C.
Jack O'Dowd; IF; Boca Grande, Fla.
Caleb Pendleton; C; Jensen Beach, Fla.
Brett Percival; RHP; Lancaster, S.C.
Jackson Phipps; LHP; Dallas, Ga.
Maxwel Rajcic; RHP/IF; Fullerton, Calif.
Jordan Rollins; OF; Miami, Fla.
Drew Romo; C; The Woodlands, Texas
^Blake Shapen; IF; Shreveport, La.
Josh Shuler; OF; Suwanee, Ga.
*Carson Tucker; IF; Phoenix, Ariz.
*^Anthony Volpe; IF; Watchung, N.J.
*^Masyn Winn; RHP/IF; Kingwood, Texas
*^Nate Wohlgemuth; RHP; Owasso, Okla.
*^Carter Young; IF; Selah, Wash.

*Denotes National Team alum
*Denotes National Team Development Program participant

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Eighteen USA Baseball Alumni Selected in First Round of 2018 Major League Baseball Draft

June 5, 2018

DURHAM, N.C. - Eighteen USA Baseball alumni were drafted in the first round of the Major League Baseball Draft on Monday night, including number one overall pick, Casey Mize. USA Baseball has had 495 total alumni drafted in the first round since 1978, and 2018 marks the 16th time in the last 18 years that the first overall pick played for Team USA.

The Detroit Tigers started the 2018 draft by selecting 2017 Collegiate National Team alumnus Casey Mize with the first pick of the draft. He is the sixth consecutive USA Baseball alum to be selected number one overall following Royce Lewis (2017), Mickey Moniak (2016), Dansby Swanson (2015), Brady Aiken (2014) and Mark Appel (2013).

In total, USA Baseball alumni have been selected with the number one overall pick 31 times since 1971.

"USA Baseball is extremely proud of our eighteen alumni who were selected in the first round of the 2018 MLB Draft," said USA Baseball Executive Director and CEO Paul Seiler. "The success of our athletes following their time within our national team programs is a testament to their hard work and dedication to our beloved sport, and we cannot wait to watch them as they continue their baseball careers at the next level."

Four-time USA Baseball alumnus Nick Madrigal (No. 4, Chicago White Sox), Travis Swaggerty (No. 10, Pittsburgh Pirates), two-time Collegiate National Team alum Seth Beer (No. 28, Houston Astros), Cadyn Grenier (No. 37, Baltimore Orioles) and Jake McCarthy (No. 39, Arizona Diamondbacks) join Mize as members of the 2017 Collegiate National Team that were selected in the first round. This team won all three of its international friendship series last summer against Chinese Taipei, Cuba and Japan.

Following a season in which the 18U National Team earned its fourth consecutive World Baseball Softball Confederation U-18 Baseball World Cup title, ten members of the 20-man roster were selected in the first round in 2018. Jarred Kelenic (No. 6, New York Mets) was the first member of the team selected, followed by Ryan Weathers (No. 7, San Diego Padres), Matt Liberatore (No. 16, Tampa Bay Rays), Nolan Gorman (No. 19, St. Louis Cardinals), three-time alum Brice Turang (No. 21, Milwaukee Brewers), Anthony Seigler (No. 23, New York Yankees), three-time alum Triston Casas (No. 26, Boston Red Sox), Mason Denaburg (No. 27, Washington Nationals), JT Ginn (No. 30, Los Angeles Dodgers) and Ethan Hankins (No. 35, Cleveland Indians).

"To have half of last year's roster selected in the first round is a real honor to everyone involved in the USA Baseball National Team process," said Matt Blood, USA Baseball 18U National Team Director. "These players have put in a lot of hard work and have also taken great pride in representing the United States in International competition."

Four national team programs were represented in the 2018 draft, including seven players from the Collegiate National Team, 15 from the 18U National Team, four from the 15U National Team and two that played for the former 14U National Team. In total, the 18 alumni selected in the first round have won a cumulative eighteen international gold medals and one silver medal.

USA Baseball had its most successful year in 2017, sweeping through its international competition with gold medals at the World Baseball Classic, WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup, COPABE Pan Am U-15 Championships and the WBSC U-12 Baseball World Cup; in addition to the Collegiate National Team winning all three of its international friendship series against Chinese Taipei, Cuba and Japan. It is the first time in international baseball history a federation has won all of its international competitions in a calendar year.

The draft continues Tuesday, June 5 and Wednesday, June 6. Stay tuned to @USABaseball on Twitter for updates.

The full list of USA Baseball alumni selected in the first round of the 2018 MLB Draft is as follows:

Round-Pick; Name; MLB Team; USA Baseball Team(s)

1-1; Casey Mize; Detroit Tigers; 2017 Collegiate
1-4; Nick Madrigal; Chicago White Sox; 2011 14U, 2012 15U, 2014 18U, 2017 Collegiate
1-6; Jarred Kelenic; New York Mets; 2016-17 18U
1-7; Ryan Weathers; San Diego Padres; 2017 18U
1-10; Travis Swaggerty; Pittsburgh Pirates; 2017 Collegiate
1-16; Matthew Liberatore; Tampa Bay Rays; 2017 18U
1-19; Nolan Gorman; St. Louis Cardinals; 2017 18U
1-21; Brice Turang; Milwaukee Brewers; 2014 15U, 2016-17 18U
1-22; Ryan Rolison; Colorado Rockies; 2015 18U
1-23; Anthony Seigler; New York Yankees; 2017 18U
1-24; Nico Hoerner; Chicago Cubs; 2011 14U, 2012 15U
1-26; Triston Casas; Boston Red Sox; 2015 15U, 2016-17 18U
1-27; Mason Denaburg; Washington Nationals; 2017 18U
1-28; Seth Beer; Houston Astros; 2016-17 Collegiate
1-30; JT Ginn; Los Angeles Dodgers; 2017 18U
1-35; Ethan Hankins; Cleveland Indians; 2017 18U
1-37; Cadyn Grenier; Baltimore Orioles; 2017 Collegiate
1-39; Jake McCarthy; Arizona Diamondbacks; 2017 Collegiate

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2018 17U National Team Development Program Staff Announced

ABCA Hall of Famer Jack Leggett to serve as field coordinator in 2018
April 27, 2018

DURHAM, N.C. - The staff for the 2018 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP) was announced by USA Baseball on Friday. American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) Hall of Famer Jack Leggett will serve as the field coordinator for the event after coaching in 2017.

The head coach at Northwestern University, Spencer Allen, and current University of Texas head coach, David Pierce, will join Leggett on staff and serve as the managers for the Stripes and Stars teams, respectively.

Coaches and evaluators will assess 40 athletes during the NTDP week and are made up of former professional players, respected collegiate and high school coaches, and professional scouts.

Leggett, who will also serve as the 18U National Team manager in 2018, was the head baseball coach at Clemson University from 1994-2015, where he led the Tigers to 955 victories, 21 NCAA Tournament appearances and six College World Series berths. He was a three-time ACC Coach of the Year recipient and was inducted into the ABCA Hall of Fame in 2014. He is returning to the 17U NTDP staff for the second consecutive year after serving as the Stripes manager in 2017.

Ricky Meinhold and Gregg Ritchie will join Leggett on the staff and serve as additional evaluators for the event. Meinhold is currently a scout for the St. Louis Cardinals and returns to the 17U NTDP staff for the first time since 2016. Ritchie has been named an assistant coach for the 2018 18U National Team and is in his sixth season as the head coach at George Washington University. In addition, six other coaches will assist in leading the NTDP's Stars and Stripes teams.

The Stripes team will be led by Allen and he will be joined by North Carolina Baseball Academy owner and 2018 18U National Team Pitching Coach, Scott Bankhead, Woodmont High School (Piedmont, S.C.) Athletic Director, Chris Carter, and Western Carolina University Head Coach, Bobby Moranda. Bankhead will serve as the team's pitching coach and Carter and Moranda have been named position coaches.

Pierce will be joined on the Stars staff by University of Auburn Head Coach, Butch Thompson, George Tech Assistant Coach Mike Nickeas and former MLB veteran Ernie Young. Young represented the United States at the Sydney 2008 Olympic Games and on the 2003 Olympic qualifying team, and was a long-time member of the USA Baseball Board of Directors. Young and Nickeas will serve as position coaches for the Stars, while Thompson will guide the team's pitching staff.

USA Baseball will utilize a rolling invitation process for the 17U NTDP participants in 2018. The players will be selected from the 2017 USA Baseball National Team Identification Series (NTIS), the 2018 17U National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida, and through recommendations from scouts, coaches and the amateur baseball community. The USA Baseball National Team Development Program offers athletes an opportunity to connect with USA Baseball staff to better prepare for future national team experience. The program includes skill development sessions, off-field education seminars, intrasquad Stars vs. Stripes games and exposure to professional scouts, college recruiters and the 18U National Team staff and task force.

The 2018 17U NTDP will take place July 22-26 in Chicago and will feature intrasquad scrimmages at Northwestern University, Wrigley Field and Miller Park.

The coaching staff and their bios are as follows:

Name, NTDP Position
Spencer Allen, Stripes Manager 
Scott Bankhead, Stripes Pitching Coach
Chris Carter, Stripes Position Coach
Jack Leggett, Field Coordinator
Ricky Meinhold, Pitching Rover
Bobby Moranda, Stripes Position Coach
Mike Nickeas, Stars Position Coach
David Pierce, Stars Manager
Gregg Ritchie, Hitting Rover
Butch Thompson, Stars Pitching Coach
Ernie Young, Stars Position Coach

Spencer Allen is currently in his third season as the head coach at Northwestern University. Prior to his time with the Wildcats, he helped lead the University of Illinois baseball team to a program-record 50 wins and the first NCAA Regional title in program history as an assistant coach. Allen, who played at Iowa State University from 1999-2001, also spent time on the coaching staffs at Creighton University, Washington State University, Purdue University and Edmonds Community College. 2018 marks his second coaching stint with USA Baseball, as he also served as a coach at the 2016 Tournament of Stars and the 2016 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP).

Scott Bankhead was tabbed as the pitching coach for the 2018 18U National Team in March and will serve in the same role for the 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP) Stripes team. No stranger to suiting up for Team USA, the owner of the North Carolina Baseball Academy also served as an 18U National Team Trials coach in 2016 and 2017, and was a member of the Los Angeles 1984 Olympic Team. He was the 16th overall pick in the 1984 MLB Draft out of the University of North Carolina and he spent ten seasons in the Major Leagues, pitching for the Kansas City Royals, Seattle Mariners, Cincinnati Reds, Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees. He finished his professional career with a 4.18 ERA over 901 innings.

2018 marks Chris Carter's third consecutive year working with the 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP) as he started coaching at the event in 2016. He made his coaching debut in 2016 at the 17U NTDP and the Tournament of Stars (TOS), before serving as an assistant coach for the 2017 18U National Team that won a World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) U-18 Baseball World Cup gold medal. He was also a member of the TOS coaching staff in 2017 and will once again reprise his role at the event in 2018. Currently the athletic director at Woodmont High School (Piedmont, S.C.), Carter held the same position at nearby Easley High School (Easley, S.C.) from 2009-2013. He was a catcher at Clemson University in the 1990s and formerly served as the head baseball coach at Easley and Byrnes high schools from 1998-2008, before transitioning into an administrative role.

A 2014 American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) Hall of Fame inductee, Leggett led the Clemson University baseball team from 1994-2015. In his time at the helm the Tigers recorded 955 victories, 21 NCAA Tournament appearances and six College World Series berths. Every single one of his teams compiled winning overall records in his 22 seasons at Clemson and 34 of his players were All-Americans, 31 were First-Team All-ACC players and 11 were selected in the first round of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Clemson was the seventh-winningest program in the nation during his time as head coach and he was named ACC Coach of the Year three times throughout his career. Leggett also served as a head coach for 14 years at Vermont and Western Carolina before moving to Clemson. He made his USA Baseball coaching debut in 2017 with the 17U National Team Development Program and he has been named the 2018 18U National Team manager.

Ricky Meinhold is currently a scout for the St. Louis Cardinals. Meinhold was a pitching coach at Lindenwood University and Coker College from 2011-2013, prior to joining the Cardinals organization. He pitched collegiately at Drury University and went on to play for an affiliate of the San Diego Padres, becoming the first pitcher in Drury program history to play professional baseball. Meinhold will make his third coaching appearance for USA Baseball in 2018. Previously, he was the pitching coach at the 2016 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP) and the lead pitching evaluator at the 2017 Tournament of Stars. He also served as the pitching coach for the 2017 18U National Team that won the program's fourth consecutive World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) U-18 Baseball World Cup gold medal.

Bobby Moranda will make his USA Baseball coaching debut in 2018. The Western Carolina head coach is in his 11th season with the Catamounts and has 32 total years of coaching experience. He has also held assistant coaching positions at Georgia Tech, Wake Forest University, the University of Virginia and Eastern Kentucky University. Western Carolina's all-time winningest head coach in conference play, he led the Catamounts to back-to-back Southern Conference regular season championships in 2013 and 2014 and was named the Southern Conference Coach of the Year in 2013.

Mike Nickeas, a three-time USA Baseball alum, will make his second consecutive coaching appearance at the 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP). Currently an assistant coach at Georgia Tech, Nickeas played for Team USA on the 1999 16U National Team, the 2001 18U National Team and the 2003 Collegiate National Team. Before starting his coaching career, he played professional baseball for 11 years, including four years in the Major Leagues. He spent three years as a catcher for the New York Mets and one year with the Toronto Blue Jays before retiring following the 2014 season.

David Pierce is in his second year as the head coach at the University of Texas. In his first season at Texas, the Longhorns went 39-24, advanced to the Big 12 Conference tournament championship game and an NCAA Regional. Prior to his time at Texas, he was the head coach at Tulane University and Sam Houston State University. He also served as an assistant coach at the University of Houston and Rice University. In that time, Pierce has been a part of programs that have advanced to the postseason in 16 consecutive years, played in seven Super Regionals and reached four College World Series. In addition, he helped Rice win a National Championship in 2003. This will be his second coaching stint with USA Baseball after serving as an assistant coach for the 2016 Collegiate National Team.

Gregg Ritchie returns to the 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP) coaching staff for the third year in a row in 2018. As the 2017 18U National Team pitching coach, he helped lead Team USA to an undefeated record and a fourth consecutive WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup title. Under his direction, the team hit .273 and had a .418 slugging percentage, with 16 doubles, five triples and six home runs over nine games. He also served as a coach at the 2016 17U NTDP and 18U Trials. Ritchie is in his sixth season at the helm for George Washington University, where he was named Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year in 2013. That year, he led the Colonials to their first postseason berth since 2006 and then followed that with back-to-back postseason appearances in 2015 and 2016. He began his coaching career in the Chicago White Sox organization, where he worked at various levels for 10 years, before serving as the hitting coach for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2011 and 2012. Ritchie has also been named to the 2018 18U National Team staff and will serve on the coaching staff for the 2018 16U NTDP as well.

Currently in his third year at the helm for Auburn University, Butch Thompson will make his second USA Baseball coaching appearance at the 2018 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP). Previously, he served as a coach at the 2016 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP). Thompson led the Tigers to a No. 4 national ranking, an NCAA Regional bid and its best record in Southeastern Conference play since 2010 in 2017. Before taking over at Auburn, he spent seven seasons coaching at Mississippi State where he was named the 2014 Baseball America and American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) National Assistant Coach of the Year. In those seven season, he helped lead the Bulldogs to four NCAA Regionals, two Super Regionals, an SEC Tournament championship and a College World Series runner-up finish in 2013.

Ernie Young is a former MLB veteran who played for the Oakland Athletics, Kansas City Royals, Arizona Diamondbacks, Detroit Tigers and Cleveland Indians for parts of eight seasons after being drafted in the 10th round of the 1990 MLB Draft. Young, who attended Lewis University, belted 27 home runs and drove in 90 runs during his 288-game career. He led Team USA to a gold medal at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, hitting .385 and leading the team in RBIs (8), and played once more for the red, white and blue, in the 2003 COPABE Olympic Qualifying Tournament. After his retirement in 2007, he became a hitting coach in the Chicago White Sox organization and managed the West Michigan Whitecaps, the single-A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, in 2012. In addition to his USA Baseball playing career he is a four-time coaching alumnus, highlighted by managing the 2011 Pan American Games Team and serving as the batting coach for the 2015 Pan American Games Team, both of which won silver medals. Young is making a return to the 17U National Team Development Program coaching ranks after previously serving in the role in 2016. He is also a former member of the USA Baseball Board of Directors.

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USA Baseball Ranked Number One In Latest WBSC Baseball World Rankings

USA Baseball sits atop the baseball world rankings for the first time since 2014
February 22, 2018

DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball has reclaimed the top spot in the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Baseball World Rankings as announced today by the WBSC. Following a 2017 season in which Team USA swept its international competitions at the 12U, 15U, 18U, Collegiate and Professional levels, the U.S. is ranked number one for the first time since 2014.

"To be recognized by the WBSC as the preeminent baseball program in the world is a testament to all of the hard work that our athletes, coaches and USA Baseball staff have put in to our national team programs," said Paul Seiler, Executive Director and CEO of USA Baseball. "Our organization has celebrated unprecedented success in the past few years and we will continue to build on those achievements as we reach toward new heights."

The WBSC Baseball World Rankings weigh a country's National Team performance - from U-12 to Professional - in WBSC-sanctioned international competitions over a four-year period.

USA Baseball had its most successful year in 2017, setting a record for most annual Baseball World Ranking points amassed with 2,127. The U.S. swept through its international competition with gold medals at the World Baseball Classic, WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup, COPABE Pan Am U-15 Championships and the WBSC U-12 Baseball World Cup; in addition to the Collegiate National Team winning all three of its international friendship series against Chinese Taipei, Cuba and Japan. It is the first time in international baseball history a federation has won all of its international competitions in a calendar year.

Since 2015, USA Baseball has won five world championships, including being the reigning World Baseball Classic Champion, as well as the reigning world champions at the 12U and 18U age levels. In total, the U.S. has medaled in all 11 international tournaments it has participated in since 2015, winning seven gold medals, three silver medals and one bronze.

Additionally, the Collegiate National Team has won six of eight international friendship series against Chinese Taipei (2-0-1), Cuba (3-0) and Japan (1-1) in that time frame, including winning the 5th Annual USA vs. Cuba International Friendship Series in Cuba - the first-ever series victory on Cuban soil in USA Baseball history.

The USA Baseball Women's National Team - currently ranked number three in the WBSC Women's Baseball World Rankings - has also won two gold medals since 2015, highlighted by an 11-3 victory over Canada in the finals of the 2015 Pan American Games.

To see the full WBSC Baseball World Rankings, visit www.WBSC.org.

World Baseball Softball Confederation Baseball World Rankings (1-12):
1. USA
2. Japan
3. Korea
4. Cuba
5. Mexico
6. Chinese Taipei
7. Canada
8. Australia
9. Netherlands
10. Puerto Rico
11. Venezuela
12. Dominican Republic

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17U NTDP

Stars Take Series With 14-9 Victory

July 28, 2017
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Stars 3 0 3 1 1 0 3 0 3  14  18 1
Stripes 0 2 0 0 0 4 0 3 0 9 8 6
Win: Martinez, Zach  Loss: Landis, Dutch Box Score

CHICAGO, Ill. - C.J. Abrams (Alpharetta, Ga.) notched three hits and Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville, Tx.) knocked in four runs as the Stripes defeated the Stars, 14-9, on Thursday afternoon at Kerry Wood Cubs Park. With the victory, the Stars took the series with a record of 2-1-1 in the 2017 USA Baseball 17U National Team Development Program.

The Stars got off to a hot start and never looked back, as they put up three runs in the top of the first inning. Abrams led off the inning by reaching on an error, and seven batters would step up to the plate to produce two hits and pull out to an early 3-0 lead.

The Stripes would respond an inning later, when Ethan Hearn (Mobile, Ala.) sent a 1-1 pitch over the left field wall for a two-run shot to put his team within one run. However, the Stars' pitching would keep the Stripes in check for the next three innings.

Rece Hinds (Niceville, Fla.), Conagher Sands (Bakersfield, Calif.) and Michael Carpentier Jr. (Highland, Calif.) would work together to increase the Stars' lead by three more runs in the top of the third inning. Witt got the rally started by reaching first off a throwing error, and Raynel Delgado (Miami Lakes, Fla.) would move him over to third with a single to set the table for Hinds, whose ground out would score the run from third. Sands' single and Carpentier's double made the score 6-2, Stars.

The Stars would tack on one run in both the fourth and fifth innings, but the Stripes would battle back in the bottom of the sixth. A few free passes later, Anthony Volpe (Watchung, N.J.) stepped into the box with two runners on. His triple allowed two runs to score and Joseph Naranjo (Chino, Calif.) added a RBI-ground out to bring the score within two runs, 8-6.

Over the remaining three innings, the Stars put up six runs and the Stripes sent three across the plate to make the score the final 14-9.

Notching the win for the Stars was Zach Martinez (Peoria, Ariz.), who scattered one hit across two innings of working while allowing two earned runs. Spencer Jones (Encinitas, Calif.) also shined, as he threw two perfect innings for the Stars. Dutch Landis (Henderson, Nev.) was tacked with the loss for the Stripes, as he allowed three runs off three hits in two innings on the afternoon.


Today's finale marked the end of the 2017 17U National Team Development Program, for more information, visit USABaseball.com.

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17U NTDP

Pitching Locks In to Force A Tie Between The Stars and Stripes

July 26, 2017
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Stripes 2 1 1 0 2 0 0 0 0  6  9
Stars 0 2 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 10
Box Score

CHICAGO, Ill. - Coleman Brigman (San Jose, Calif.) knocked a two-RBI double for the Stripes and Rece Hinds (Niceville, Fla.) followed suit with two RBIs of his own for the Stars, as the teams ended in a tie, 6-6, on Wednesday afternoon at Wrigley Field. The tie brings the series record to 1-1-1, making tomorrow afternoon's finale a rubber match.

The Stripes got the scoring going in the top of the first inning, as Christian Cairo (Clearwater, Fla.) led off the game with a single. A batter later, Joseph Naranjo sent him home with a RBI-double and Cade Doughty (Denham Springs, La.) followed him with a single to quickly make the score 2-0. The Stripes tacked on another run in the top of the second off Michael Limoncelli's (Horseheads, N.Y.) ground out.

Raynel Delagdo (Miami Lakes, Fla.) started a rally for the Stars in the home half in the second with a leadoff walk. Delgado would cross the plate when Hinds sent a double into the left field gap and two batters later, Conagher Sands (Bakersfield, Calif.) ripped a double into the alley to bring the score to 3-2.

Doughty's second hit of the game, this time in the form of a RBI-double, in the third inning increased the Stripes' lead again.

However, the Stars would drop a four-spot in the bottom of the inning to take their first lead of the afternoon, 6-4. Jason Brandow (Napa, Calif.) leadoff the inning with a walk, and two hits and two more walks later, the Stars found themselves with the lead.

Both teams kept each other off the board in the fourth, but the Stripes used two doubles from Limoncelli and Brigman and a single from Cairo to tie the game up at six apiece.

Carter Young (Selah, Wash.) shined on offense for the Stars, going 3-for-6 with a RBI and run scored. He was backed up by Jaden Woodson (Dallas, Tx.), who tallied two hits and a RBI of his own.

In the opposing dugout, four Stripes - Cairo, Doughty, Anthony Volpe (Watchung, N.J.) and Limoncelli - notched multi-hit performances to account for eight of the total 11 hits.

Nolan Crisp (McDonough, Ga.) led the way on the mound for the Stars, limiting the Stripes to just two hits while striking out two over the final three innings of the game. For the Stripes, Nate Wohlgemuth (Owasso, Okla.), Matthew Thompson (Cypress Ranch, Tx.) and Joseph Charles (Celebration, Fla.) combined to keep the Stars off the board for the final six innings of the game while scattering four hits.

The Stars and Stripes play the final game of the 2017 USA Baseball 17U National Team Development Program tomorrow afternoon at Kerry Wood Cubs Park. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. CT and fans can follow along on Twitter at @USABaseballNTDP.

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17U NTDP

Stripes Even Series With Victory Over Stars

July 25, 2017
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Stars 2 0 1 3 0 0 0 0 0 6 8
Stripes 2 1 2 0 3 1 0 0 -  9   10 
Win: Mejia, I.  Loss: Jones, S.

EVANSTON, Ill. - Ethan Hearn (Mobile, Ala.) demolished a game-tying home run in the second inning and Jake Holland (Miramar, Fla.) laced an RBI single to propel the Stars over the Stripes, 9-6, on Monday afternoon at Rocky Miller Park at Northwestern University. With the win, the Stars have evened the series at one apiece in the 2017 USA Baseball National Team Development Program.

Both teams put up two runs in their halves of the first frame behind two run shots. Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville, Tx.) capitalized on a walk by sending a full count pitch over the wall to put his team up 2-0 early on. The Stars would retaliate, tying the game up with Hearn's long ball.

Similar to yesterday's matchup in Wisconsin, it was another back-and-forth affair for the Stars and Stripes. The Stripes would add one run in the second and two in the third to stake a 5-3 lead, but the Stars would strike back with a three-spot behind Sam Siani's (Glenside, Pa.) RBI single and a throwing error.

The Stripes kicked into overdrive in the bottom of the fifth inning, using two singles and three walks to put up three runs to snatch a 8-6 lead. They would tack on another run in the sixth and then cruise the final three innings to cement a series-tying 9-6 victory.

The three, four and five hitters for the Stripes proved to be the difference makers, as all three - Hearn, Holland and Joseph Naranjo (Chino, Calif.) - all notched multi-hit performances.

Ian Mejia (Tucson, Ariz.) notched the victory for the Stripes, holding the Stars scoreless while scattering two hits and striking out three in three innings of work. Spencer Jones (Encinitas, Calif.) was tacked with the loss, as he gave up four runs in two innings on the afternoon.

The Stars and Stripes are back in action on Wednesday afternoon as they travel to Wrigley Field for game three. First pitch is set for 11 a.m. CT and fans can follow along on Twitter at @USABaseballNTDP.

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17U NTDP

Stars Top Stripes With Late Rally

July 24, 2017
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Stripes 0 1 0 0 1 4 0 0 0 6 6
Stars 3 0 0 0 0 0 1 3 -  7   4 
Win: Leader, G.  Loss: Wohlgemuth, N.

MILWAUKEE, Wis. -- Raynel Delgado (Miami Lakes, Fla.) knocked a bases-clearing double and was a home run short of the cycle, while Carter Young (Selah, Wash.) worked two walks and scored two runs as the Stars defeated the Stripes, 7-6, on Sunday afternoon at Miller Park. The Stars now hold a 1-0 series lead in the 2017 USA Baseball 17U National Team Development Program.

The Stars jumped out to an early 3-0 in the home half of the first inning in part by Delgado's bases clearing two-bagger. However, their offense would be largely quieted by the Stripes' pitching until their eighth inning rally.

A few wild pitches in the sixth inning would load the bases and light a fire under the Stripes, who put up a four-spot to take the lead, 6-3. The lone hit in the big inning came from Coleman Brigman's (San Jose, Calif.) in the form of an RBI-single.

Delgado laced a triple to lead off the seventh, and the Stars would manufacture a run a few batters later through Dutch Landis (Henderson, Nev.), who sent a fly ball deep enough to allow Delgado to tag up from third and chip away at the deficit.

It was a back-and-forth affair the rest of the way, but the Stars came out on top to slip away with a gritty victory. C.J. Abrams (Alpharetta, Ga.) would lead off the eighth inning with a single and then move over to when Young followed him with a walk. The Stars would plate three more runs on three consecutive walks to effectively seal the comeback win.

Shining in relief for the Stars was Grant Leader (La Grange Park, Ill.), who kept the Stripes hitless for the final two innings of the ball game to earn the win. In the opposing dug out, Cooper Benson (San Luis Obispo, Calif.) struck out seven - including five looking - and scattered one hit across 3.1 innings of work. Nate Wohlgemuth was charged with the loss as he was charged with the three runs the Stars used to take the lead in the eighth.

The Stars and Stripes are back in action tomorrow afternoon as they travel to Rocky Miller Park at Northwestern University. First pitch is set for 4:00 p.m. CT and fans can follow along on Twitter at @USABaseballNTDP.

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17U NTDP

USA Baseball Announces 2017 17U National Team Development Program Staff

May 2, 2017

DURHAM, N.C. - The coaching staff and evaluators for the 2017 17U National Team Development Program (NTDP) were announced by USA Baseball on Tuesday. 2010 USA Baseball Rod Dedeaux Coach of the Year, Eric Kibler, has been selected to lead the staff as the field coordinator for the second consecutive year and fourth time overall.

Current University of North Carolina head coach, Mike Fox, and former Clemson University head coach Jack Leggett will join Kibler on staff in 2017, and will serve as the managers of the Stars and Stripes teams, respectively.

Coaches and evaluators will assess 40 athletes during the NTDP week and are made up of former professional players, respected collegiate and high school coaches, and professional scouts.

Currently the head coach at Horizon High School (Scottsdale, Ariz.), Kibler is a six-time USA Baseball coaching alum and led the 2010 16U National Team to a gold medal at the Pan American "AA" Youth Championships after gaining his first coaching experience within the organization in 2009. He also helped lead the 18U National Team to a gold medal at the 2015 World Baseball Softball Confederation U-18 World Cup when he served as an assistant coach. Kibler has previously served as the 17U NTDP field coordinator in 2012, 2014 and 2016.

Jeff Kunkel and 2017 18U National Team assistant coach Gregg Ritchie will join Kibler as additional evaluators. Kunkel currently serves as a pro scout for the Detroit Tigers and will make his USA Baseball coaching debut in 2017. Ritchie is currently in his fifth season as the head coach at George Washington University. Six additional coaches will lead the NTDP's Stars and Stripes teams.

2008 Baseball America National Coach of the Year, Fox, will lead the Stars team in 2017. Former MLB veteran Ernie Young will back Fox, serving as the assistant coach. Young represented the United States at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games and on the 2003 Olympic qualifying team. Wes Johnson, who currently serves as the pitching coach at the University of Arkansas, will guide the team's pitching staff.

American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Famer Leggett will manage the 2017 Stripes team, and will be joined by Georgia Tech assistant coach Mike Nickeas and Cal State Fullerton pitching coach Blake Hawksworth.

USA Baseball will utilize a rolling invitation process for the 17U NTDP participants in 2017. The players will be selected from the 2016 USA Baseball National Team Identification Series (NTIS), the 2017 17U National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida, and through recommendations from scouts, coaches and the amateur baseball community.

The USA Baseball National Team Development Program offers athletes an opportunity to connect with USA Baseball staff to better prepare for future national team experience. The program includes skill development sessions, off-field education seminars, intrasquad Stars vs. Stripes games and exposure to professional scouts, college recruiters and the 18U National Team staff and task force.

The 2017 17U NTDP will take place July 22-28 in Chicago and will feature intrasquad scrimmages at Northwestern University and Wrigley Field.

The coaching staff and their bios are as follows:

Name, NTDP Position, Current/Former Position
Mike Fox, Stars Manager, University of North Carolina Head Coach
Blake Hawksworth, Stripes Pitching Coach, Cal State Fullerton Pitching Coach
Wes Johnson, Stars Pitching Coach, University of Arkansas Pitching Coach
Eric Kibler, Field Coordinator, Horizon (AZ) High School Head Coach
Jeff Kunkel, Pitching Evaluator, Detroit Tigers Scout
Jack Leggett, Stripes Manager, Former Clemson University Head Coach
Mike Nickeas, Stripes Assistant Coach, Georgia Tech Assistant Coach
Gregg Ritchie, Evaluator, George Washington University Head Coach
Ernie Young, Stars Assistant Coach, Former MLB and USA Baseball player

Mike Fox, now in his 19th season as the head coach at the University of North Carolina, has guided his alma mater to its most successful period in school history and firmly established the Tar Heels as one of the nation's preeminent college baseball programs. Under Fox, the Tar Heels have made six trips to the College World Series since 2006, have been to the postseason 15 times and have won more than 800 games in 19 seasons. Fox was named Baseball America's National Coach of the Year in 2008 and the American Baseball Coaches Association has selected him as the Atlantic Region Coach of the Year three times. Fox recorded his 1,300th career victory in 2015, and at the beginning of the 2017 season he earned his 800th career win as UNC's head coach. Thirty of his former players were on Major League Baseball rosters in 2016, 83 athletes that played under him have been drafted by MLB organizations and Tar Heels have earned 26 different All-America honors under his guidance.

Blake Hawksworth is currently in his second year as the pitching coach at Cal State Fullerton. Prior to starting his coaching career, Hawksworth played professional baseball for 10 years in both the Saint Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Dodgers organizations. Eight of those years came with the Cardinals who drafted him in 2001. He made his Major League debut with the team in 2009 and was a key contributor to the National League Central Division title, recording a 2.03 ERA over 40 innings. He later pitched for the Los Angeles Dodgers before injuries ended his playing career.

Wes Johnson is in his first year as the pitching coach at the University of Arkansas. Prior to joining the staff at Arkansas, Johnson served as the pitching coach at Mississippi State and Dallas Baptist University. In 2016, he helped Mississippi State win the SEC Regular Season Championship and advance to a Super Regional. Johnson is known nationally for his player development and this is highlighted by the fact that he has had 30 pitchers drafted or sign professional contracts over the last nine years.

Eric Kibler has been the head coach at Horizon High School in Scottsdale, Arizona, since 1981, and has led the program to six state titles during his tenure. In addition, Kibler has won 17 regionals and had three runner-up finishes in the state tournament. Kibler has tutored 28 players that were selected in the MLB Draft and has seen 150 of his players go on to play college baseball.

Jeff Kunkel is currently an area scout for the Detroit Tigers, covering the upper Midwest. Prior to his scouting role, Kunkel served as a bullpen catcher for the team and played six seasons (2006-11) in the organization's minor league system. He also played collegiately at the University of Michigan where he earned All-Big Ten Conference honors in 2006 as a senior. That year he hit .335 with 38 runs scored, 15 doubles and 28 RBI.

Jack Leggett served as Clemson University's head coach for 22 seasons. In that time he led the Tigers to 955 victories, 21 NCAA Tournament appearances and six College World Series berths. Clemson was the seventh-winningest program in the nation during his time as head coach, while his six trips to Omaha tied for ninth most in the nation during his tenure. Leggett was a three-time ACC Coach of the Year recipient and was inducted into the ABCA Hall of Fame in 2014.

Mike Nickeas is a three-time USA Baseball alum and currently serves as an assistant coach at Georgia Tech. Nickeas played for Team USA on the 1999 16U National Team, the 2001 18U National Team and the 2003 Collegiate National Team. Before starting his coaching career, he played professional baseball for 11 years, including four years in the Major Leagues. He spent three years as a catcher for the New York Mets and one year with the Toronto Blue Jays before retiring following the 2014 season.

Gregg Ritchie is in his fifth season as the head coach at George Washington University. He was named Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year in 2013 after the Colonials went 15-9 in his first year at the helm. Prior to his time at George Washington, Ritchie played professionally in the San Francisco Giants and Texas Rangers systems until 1995 before starting his coaching career with the Chicago White Sox. He served as a hitting coach in Chicago's system for 10 years, then spent five years as the minor league hitting coordinator for the Pittsburgh Pirates before being named the hitting coach for the big league club in 2010. Ritchie began working with USA Baseball in 2016 as an assistant coach at the 17U NTDP and the 18U National Team Trials.

Ernie Young is a former MLB veteran who played for the Oakland Athletics, Kansas City Royals, Arizona Diamondbacks, Detroit Tigers and Cleveland Indians for parts of eight seasons after being drafted in the 10th round of the 1990 MLB Draft. Young, who attended Lewis University, belted 27 home runs and drove in 90 runs during his 288-game career. He led Team USA to a gold medal at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, hitting .385 and leading the team in RBIs (8), and played once more for the red, white and blue, in the 2003 COPABE Olympic Qualifying Tournament. After his retirement in 2007, he became a hitting coach in the Chicago White Sox organization and managed the West Michigan Whitecaps, the single-A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, in 2012. In addition to his USA Baseball playing career he is a four-time coaching alumnus, highlighted by managing the 2011 Pan American Games Team and serving as the batting coach for the 2015 Pan American Games Team, both of which won silver medals.

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