USA Baseball Announces 2018 Golden Spikes Award Semifinalists
The 41st Golden Spikes Award will be presented on June 28 in Los Angeles
May 21, 2018
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the 25 semifinalists for its Golden Spikes Award on Monday. Presented in partnership with the Rod Dedeaux Foundation, the 41st Golden Spikes Award will be presented on June 28 in Los Angeles.
The list of semifinalists spans 23 different colleges and universities, 13 conferences and two divisions of the NCAA, and features one athlete who was also a semifinalist in 2017 with Nick Madrigal (IF; Oregon State). Since 2007, 26 athletes have been named a semifinalist more than once in their careers, including past Golden Spikes Award winners Stephen Strasburg (2009), Trevor Bauer (2011), Mike Zunino (2012), Kris Bryant (2013) and Brendan McKay (2017).
"It is a tremendous honor to recognize the semifinalists for this year's Golden Spikes Award," said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball's Executive Director and CEO. "This award is given to an amateur baseball player who exemplifies outstanding athletic ability, sportsmanship, character and overall contribution to the sport, and these twenty-five young athletes are incredibly deserving of this recognition.
"Year-in and year-out the talent level in the amateur landscape continues to grow and 2018 is no different. It is exciting to see Golden Spikes Award semifinalists represented from so many different conferences and, for the first time ever, an NCAA Division II institution."
Since USA Baseball introduced semifinalists to the voting process in 2007, Zack Shannon (IF; Delta State) is the first NCAA Division II student athlete to earn this recognition. Shannon has been named the Gulf South Conference Player of the Week five times this season and was honored for the second straight year as the NCBWA South Region Player of the Year, First-Team All-Gulf South Conference and Gulf South Conference Player of the Year. Alex Fernandez (1990) and Bryce Harper (2010) are the only non-NCAA Division I athletes to win the Golden Spikes Award in its 40-year history.
Madrigal is a Golden Spikes Award semifinalist for the second straight year and is joined by his Oregon State University teammate Trevor Larnach (OF; Oregon State). The defending College World Series champion, University of Florida, is the only other school in the country with two semifinalists in 2018, with the selection of Jonathan India (IF; Florida) and Brady Singer (RHP; Florida).
The Pac-12 and SEC lead all conferences with four semifinalists apiece, while the Big 12 boasts three semifinalists in 2018. The ACC, Atlantic Sun, Big Ten and the Colonial Athletic conferences each have two athletes on the list.
Beginning with the announcement of semifinalists, a ballot will be sent to the Golden Spikes Award voting body consisting of national baseball media, select professional baseball personnel, previous Golden Spikes Award winners and select USA Baseball staff, totaling a group of over 200 voters. From Monday, May 21 through Sunday, June 3, the voting body will select three semifinalists from the ballot to be named as Golden Spikes Award finalists and fan voting will simultaneously be open on GoldenSpikesAward.com. Selections made by the voting body will carry a 95% weight of each athlete's total, while fan votes will account for the remaining 5%.
The finalists will then be announced on Wednesday, June 6. Beginning that same day through Friday, June 22, the voting body and fans will be able to cast their final vote for the Golden Spikes Award winner.
Brendan McKay took home the prestigious award last year, joining a group of recent winners that include Kyle Lewis (2016), Andrew Benintendi (2015), A.J. Reed (2014), Kris Bryant (2013), Mike Zunino (2012), Trevor Bauer (2011), Bryce Harper (2010), Stephen Strasburg (2009), Buster Posey (2008), and David Price (2007).
The winner of the 41st Golden Spikes Award will be named on Thursday, June 28, at a presentation in Los Angeles. The finalists and their families will be honored at the Rod Dedeaux Foundation Award Dinner that evening at Jonathan Club in downtown Los Angeles.
USA Baseball has partnered with the Rod Dedeaux Foundation to host the Golden Spikes Award since 2013. The Foundation was formed to honor legendary USC and USA Baseball Olympic team coach, Rod Dedeaux, and supports youth baseball and softball programs in underserved communities throughout Southern California.
A complete list of the 25 Golden Spikes Award semifinalists is as follows:
Name, Class, Position, School, Conference
Joey Bart; Jr.; C; Georgia Tech; ACC
Alec Bohm; Jr.; IF; Wichita State; American Athletic
Kyle Brnovich; So.; RHP; Elon; Colonial Athletic
Brian Brown; Sr.; LHP; NC State; ACC
Kody Clemens; Jr.; IF; Texas; Big 12
Frank German; Jr.; RHP; North Florida; Atlantic Sun
Logan Gilbert; Jr.; RHP; Stetson; Atlantic Sun
Devlin Granberg; Sr.; IF/OF; Dallas Baptist; Missouri Valley
Luke Heyer; Sr.; IF/OF; Kentucky; SEC
Jonathan India; Jr.; IF; Florida; SEC
Josh Jung; So.; IF/RHP; Texas Tech; Big 12
Trevor Larnach; Jr.; OF; Oregon State; Pac-12
Nick Madrigal; Jr.; IF; Oregon State; Pac-12
Casey Mize; Jr.; RHP; Auburn; SEC
Joey Murray; Jr.; RHP; Kent State; Mid-American
John Rooney; Jr.; LHP; Hofstra; Colonial Athletic
Nick Sandlin; Jr.; RHP; Southern Miss; Conference USA
Zack Shannon; Sr.; RHP/IF; Delta State; Gulf South
Scott Schreiber; Sr.; OF; Nebraska; Big Ten
Brady Singer; Jr.; RHP; Florida; SEC
Bren Spillane; Jr.; IF/OF; Illinois; Big Ten
Kevin Strohschein; Jr.; OF; Tennessee Tech; Ohio Valley
Spencer Torkelson; Fr.; IF; Arizona State; Pac-12
Andrew Vaughn; So.; IF; California; Pac-12
Steele Walker; Jr.; OF; Oklahoma; Big 12
USA Baseball Announces 2019 12U National Team Staff
Five-time national team coach Todd Fine will reprise role as manager in 2019
January 16, 2019
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the 2019 12U National Team staff on Thursday, including the return of Todd Fine as the manager for the second year in a row. The rest of the 2018 staff will also return to the program in 2019 with Jason Sekany as the team's pitching coach and RJ Farrell and Marc Wiese once again serving as assistant coaches.
After leading the 2018 12U National Team to its first-ever COPABE U-12 Pan-American Championships gold medal, the staff will look to guide this year's team to the program's fourth-consecutive world championship title at the 2019 World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) U-12 Baseball World Cup.
"We are honored to welcome back Todd and the rest of last year's staff to lead the 2019 12U National Team," USA Baseball Executive Director and CEO Paul Seiler said. "This is an extremely talented group of coaches and, after leading the team to its first-ever COPABE U-12 Pan-American Championships gold medal last year, we are excited to see what new heights these coaches will take our 12U National Team to in 2019."
Last year's team went undefeated under Fine's guidance, outscoring its opponents 127-7 and winning all nine of its games by a 13-run average margin of victory en route to the gold medal.
In addition to managing the 2018 squad, Fine also served as the 12U National Team pitching coach from 2014-2017. The program claimed two world championships and two silver medals while the pitching staffs held a cumulative ERA of 3.21 and an overall record of 30-5.
Fine has also coached at the USA Baseball Tournament of Stars and the 18U National Team Trials in his time with the organization. He is the founder and CEO of Top Tier Baseball based out of Chicago, Illinois. Under his guidance, Top Tier Baseball has had over 500 college baseball players, 63 Major League Baseball draft selections and nine MLB alums.
"It is a great honor to be the first back-to-back 12U manager," Fine said. "Anytime you are the three-time defending champions, having beaten the host country the last two times; there will be a huge target on our backs. The crowd intensity of 11,000 host fans chanting the entire game, the media coverage and the moment itself does not get bigger for an 11 or 12-year-old kid."
Sekany returns to the 12U National Team coaching staff in 2018 where he will serve as the team's pitching coach for the second year in a row. He was an assistant coach for the inaugural 2013 and 2015 12U National Teams that won a gold medal at the IBAF U-12 Baseball World Cups and has served on the task force at the USA Baseball National Team Identification Series (NTIS) and Tournament of Stars. A second-round selection by the Boston Red Sox in the 1996 MLB Amateur Draft, Sekany is the founder and lead pitching instructor at The Pitching Center in Pleasanton, California, and a varsity coach at Granada High School (Livermore, Calif.). In addition to his responsibilities at The Pitching Center and Granada High School, he is also the Northwest regional director for the NTIS.
2019 marks Farrell's third consecutive year serving as an assistant coach for the 12U National Team. He is in his seventh year as the head coach at Rancho Cucamonga High School (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) where 23 of his players have gone on to play collegiate baseball. Prior to coaching at Rancho Cucamonga High School, he was an associate head coach and recruiting coordinator at Patten University (Oakland, Calif.) from 2006-2008. He has worked with USA Baseball at the 11U NTIS, 12U National Open and the USA Baseball Futures Invitational, and also served as a 12U National Team Trials coach in 2016.
After making his national team coaching debut with the 12U National Team in 2018, Wiese returns to the staff for a second year. Previously, he served on coaching staffs at the 2016 and 2017 12U National Team Trials, and the 2015 17U National Team Development Program. He is the current head coach at Puyallup High School (Puyallup, Wash.) and has led the Vikings to 11 straight South Puget Sound League titles and two state championships (2014, 2017). Wiese, who was drafted in the 1987 MLB First Year Player Draft by the New York Mets, also led Puyallup High School to the 2015 USA Baseball National High School Invitational, finishing with a 3-1 record and outscoring its opponents 20-6.
"This is a testament to the strength of last year's staff and the continuity of a common goal," Fine said. "Having the comfort level with these coaches is as good as it gets. Being on the same wavelength and knowing what to expect from one another is something that doesn't happen overnight. I am extremely excited to continue what we started last year as we look toward bringing home the program's fourth world championship title in a row."
The 12U athlete identification process began with the 2018 11U NTIS and will continue with the 2019 11U Futures Invitational June 20-23 at Middle Creek Park in Cary, North Carolina, as well as the new 12U NTIS.
Held in various locations throughout the country, the 12U NTIS will offer athletes across the U.S. the opportunity to become involved with Team USA, while providing instruction, evaluation and fun. Players from the 12U NTIS will be recommended to USA Baseball officials and, from those recommendations, USA Baseball will invite 128 players to participate in the 12U National Open, which will take place July 13-15 in Santa Clarita, California.
The 12U National Team Trials will be held immediately after the 12U National Open from June 16-18, followed by training July 19-22 before the team travels to Tainan, Taiwan for the 2019 WBSC U-12 Baseball World Cup that will take place July 26-August 4.
Collegiate National Team member Adley Rutschman named Richard W. "Dick" Case Award winner
January 11, 2019
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the recipients of its annual organizational awards on Friday, recognizing the top athletes, coaches and performances from the 2018 USA Baseball national teams. Collegiate National Team member Adley Rutschman (Sherwood, Ore.) was named the Richard W. "Dick" Case Award winner, becoming the 12th Collegiate National Team member to earn athlete of the year honors. The award is given annually to USA Baseball's top player in honor of the organization's founding Executive Director and CEO.
Collegiate National Team manager Paul Mainieri earned the program's second award of the year when he was named the Rod Dedeaux Coach of the Year. USA Baseball also recognized the 15U National Team with two awards in 2018, including Team of the Year and naming Manager Jason Maxwell the Developmental Coach of the Year after the team won its first-ever world championship at the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) U-15 Baseball World Cup.
18U National Team member Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville, Texas) was honored with the International Performance of the Year Award for his strong showing in the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships gold medal game, while Women's National Team member Megan Baltzell (Stafford, Va.) took home the Sportswoman of the Year Award following an exceptional performance in the 2018 World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Women's Baseball World Cup.
Lastly, Karsten Whitson was named the Volunteer Coach of the Year after serving as a pitching coach at the 2018 14U National Team Development Program.
"We are excited to celebrate the people and performances that made 2018 another outstanding year for USA Baseball," USA Baseball Executive Director and CEO Paul Seiler said. "It is an honor to be represented by coaches, athletes and staff that are such exceptional global ambassadors for our country and the game of baseball on the international stage. We are extremely proud to recognize their 2018 accomplishments with these awards."
USA Baseball continued its incredible success against international competition in 2018, finishing the year with gold medals at the COPABE U-12 Pan-American Championships, WBSC U-15 Baseball World Cup and the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships. After winning the WBSC U-15 World Cup, Team USA is now the defending world champions for all three youth age levels. The Collegiate National Team also built on its 2017 success when it once again won all three of its international friendship series against Chinese Taipei, Japan and Cuba in 2018
Rutschman was awarded the Richard W. "Dick" Case Award following a strong summer showing for the Collegiate National Team. He joined Team USA after winning the 2018 NCAA College World Series with Oregon State and was immediately a leader both on and off the field. He paced the team in batting average (.355), slugging percentage (.516) and on-base percentage (.432), and also finished the summer leading the squad in doubles with five in nine games.
In addition, Rutschman personified the off-field qualities that the Richard W. "Dick" Case Award honors. The catcher was the quintessential teammate and an undisputed leader in the clubhouse while also exemplifying sportsmanship and love of the game throughout the summer.
Mainieri was named the Rod Dedeaux Coach of the Year after leading the Collegiate National Team to series wins over Chinese Taipei, Japan and Cuba for the second year in a row. Under his guidance, Team USA started its summer undefeated against international competition with a five-game sweep of Chinese Taipei and finished with a 11-3 record. The series win against Cuba marked its fourth in a row in the annual series and was just the second time in Collegiate National Team history that Team USA has claimed a series win on Cuban soil.
USA Baseball's Team of the Year award was given to the 15U National Team after it won its first-ever world championship with a 7-1 gold medal-game victory over Panama at the 2018 WBSC U-15 Baseball World Cup. The team finished the tournament with an 8-1 record, a .323 batting average, 69 RBI, 17 doubles, five triples and three home runs while outscoring opponents 88-13 en route to the gold medal. In addition, the pitching staff tallied a collective team ERA of 1.24 over 58.0 innings and four players were named to the WBSC U-15 Baseball World Cup All-World Team. Maxwell's tutelage, leadership and guidance of the squad as this year's manager led to him being named the 2018 Developmental Coach of the Year.
"Jason Maxwell has been an asset to USA Baseball for many years and he brought an impressive amount of leadership and expertise to the 2018 15U National Team," Seiler said. "His ability to develop and guide these young players to new heights was evident and the team's journey to the program's first world championship was impressive to watch. We couldn't be happier to honor him and this year's team with these awards."
Witt Jr. earned the 2018 International Performance of the Year Award after hitting for a natural cycle in the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships gold medal game. The Colleyville, Texas, native hit a single in the second, an RBI-double in the third, a lead-off triple in the fourth and completed the cycle with a two-run home run in the fifth to lead the red, white and blue's offense in the 17-2 defeat of Panama. Following the game, Witt Jr. was named the tournament MVP and also picked up the best slugger and highest batting average awards after hitting .576 with three doubles, three triples, three home runs and 18 RBI in nine games.
Two-time Women's National Team alum Baltzell was named Sportswoman of the Year after hitting a team-high .500 in the 2018 WBSC Women's Baseball World Cup and leading the tournament in home runs with two. The lefty now owns the WBSC Women's Baseball World Cup home run record after hitting one in the 2016 World Cup and two in 2018. In addition to being named to the All-World Team following the event's conclusion, Baltzell also won two individual awards for her stellar 2018 performance, taking home the hardware for most home runs (2) and most RBI (10).
Lastly, Karsten Whitson, who won a gold medal as a player on the 2009 18U National Team, was named the 2018 Volunteer Coach of the Year after serving as a pitching coach for the 14U National Team Development Program's Stars team. The pitching staff thrived under Whitson, combining for 16 strikeouts in the three-game series. Six of those pitchers were invited to the 15U National Team Trials and one - Karson Bowen - was named to the 2018 15U National Team.
The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) annually honors one Sportsman, Sportswoman and Team of the Year based on nominations from its National Governing Bodies, as well as Developmental and Volunteer Coach of the Year awards. USA Baseball's award winners serve as the organization's nominees in their respective categories with the USOC.
Scott Brosius Named Senior Director of Player Development
A three-time World Series champion, Brosius will lead the development of on-field player programming for national teams
January 3, 2019
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the hiring of Scott Brosius as its Senior Director of Player Development on Thursday. A three-time World Series champion and former World Series MVP with the New York Yankees, he will serve as the organizational lead in the development of on-field programming for its six national teams and three national team development programs, as well as producing curriculum related to player development that will be available as part of USA Baseball's educational resources.
Brosius will also serve as the Field Coordinator at the Prospect Development Pipeline League, the new premier development and showcase experience for high school draft prospects announced by Major League Baseball and USA Baseball in November.
"The creation of this new position within the organization marks a significant step in USA Baseball's commitment to player development," said Rick Riccobono, USA Baseball's Chief Development Officer. "We could not be more excited to be welcoming Scott back to the USA Baseball family. His resume of sustained success at the highest levels of our game will be impactful to our athletes and coaches alike. From the newly created PDP League to working with our national teams, Scott will be central in preparing our players for the next steps in their careers."
"I am extremely excited to join USA Baseball. The two years I spent as coach of the 18U team were unforgettable, and the opportunity to join the organization in this role was something I couldn't pass up," said Brosius. "Along with the amazing honor of representing our country, our players will be provided with the most advanced training and technology available to aid in their development. Beyond our goal of winning gold medals, we want to equip our players to be great collegians and professionals both on and off the field."
Brosius was most recently an assistant coach and the third base coach for the Seattle Mariners in 2017 and 2018, respectively. Prior to his tenure coaching at the Major League level, he spent one season as the hitting coach for the Tacoma Rainiers, the AAA-affiliate of the Mariners, and 15 years coaching at his alma mater, Linfield College (McMinnville, Ore.). He joined the Wildcats' coaching staff as an assistant coach in 2002 and was later named head coach in 2008. In his eight years at the helm of the program, he led Linfield to the 2013 NCAA Division III National Championship and held a 270-96 overall record.
Brosius was twice named the manager of the USA Baseball 18U National Team, where he managed Team USA to gold medals in 2011 and 2012, a world championship title and a combined 16-2 overall record. He was recognized as the 2011 and 2012 USA Baseball Rod Dedeaux Coach of the Year, presented annually to the coach who expects excellence out of their players and strives for them to better themselves on and off the field. Brosius joins Davey Johnson (2005, 2006, 2007) as one of only two former national team managers to earn multiple Coach of the Year honors from USA Baseball.
Drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 1987 Amateur Draft, Brosius spent 11 years in the Major Leagues with the A's and the New York Yankees. He was named an All-Star after his first season in the Bronx in 1998 and earned a Gold Glove (3B) in 1999. Brosius was a part of three consecutive World Series championship teams with the Yankees from 1998-2000 and earned MVP honors in the 1998 World Series where he hit .471 with six RBIs and two home runs.
For more information on USA Baseball, visit USABaseball.com and follow along on Twitter @USABaseball.
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced modifications to its National Team Identification Series (NTIS) on Wednesday. Beginning in 2019, the NTIS will operate under a new infrastructure that features six total regions spanning the United States and the introduction of a 12-and-under age group to the program. Subsequently, the 17-and-under age group has been removed from the NTIS.
The NTIS continues to be the most comprehensive national team identification program offered by USA Baseball. Launched in 2009, the program was created to provide all athletes from across the United States an opportunity to compete for a spot on a USA Baseball national team.
Player identification in the NTIS begins at the local level, where athletes attend camps and tryouts in their designated region. Every region will name 32 athletes from each of the 11U, 12U and 13U age groups, and 36 athletes from each of the 14U, 15U and 16U age groups, to two All-Region teams that will participate in the NTIS Champions Cup at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, North Carolina.
The culminating event will feature 12 teams per age group and athletes will participate in workouts and a championship-style tournament while being evaluated by national team coaches and scouts. Following the Champions Cup, USA Baseball will invite a minimum of 72 athletes to national team and National Team Development Program (NTDP) events in the subsequent calendar year.
"As participation in youth baseball continues to rise, it is our duty to adapt and modernize USA Baseball initiatives to fit the ever-changing youth baseball landscape," said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball's Executive Director and CEO. "Our National Team Identification Series continues to be our most inclusive athlete identification process and we are confident these modifications will continue to serve USA Baseball, its national teams and athletes with an unrivaled standard of excellence."
Formerly comprised of 16 regions, the NTIS will now utilize a six-region system for the initial player identification process. The six regions consist of the Midwest, Northeast, Northwest, South, Southeast and Southwest.
All six NTIS regions will be managed and operated by a USA Baseball-appointed Regional Director. Each Regional Director is responsible for the planning and execution of the player identification process for their assigned region(s), and will ultimately name the All-Region teams that will move on to the NTIS Champions Cup. The USA Baseball regional directors for 2019 are Rich Janor (Midwest), Andy Rojo (South, Southwest), Jeff Schaefer (Northeast, Southeast) and Jason Sekany (Northwest).
"USA Baseball Regional Directors play a vital role in the overall success of the National Team Identification Series and USA Baseball national teams," said Ashley Bratcher, Senior Director of Baseball Operations. "These individuals are responsible for finding the very best athletes from every corner of the country to represent Team USA in international competitions around the world. USA Baseball can attribute a great deal of its recent international successes to the contributions of our regional directors."
The 12-and-under age group will debut in the NTIS program in 2019 and will serve as an identification event for the present year's USA Baseball 12U National Team, in addition to being a once-in-a-lifetime development and scouting exposure opportunity for athletes at this age level. USA Baseball regional directors will select 15 12U internationally-age-eligible athletes from each region to compete in the USA Baseball National Open in California, where the 12U National Team coaching staff will invite a minimum of 15 athletes to participate in national team trials.
"We are excited to introduce the twelve-and-under age group to our National Team Identification Series program this year," continued Bratcher. "The twelve-and-under age group is afforded a truly unique experience as they are the only age group in the entire National Team Identification Series program that are eligible for an immediate national team opportunity in the current calendar year."
Lastly, the 17-and-under age group has been eliminated from the NTIS program going forward. For information on the identification process for the 18U National Team, please visit USABaseball.com.
The 2019 NTIS identification process will begin at various times across all six regions after the new year. Information on regional camps and tryouts, as well as contact information for the regional directors, can be found at USABaseballNTIS.com.
Athletes selected to their All-Region team will participate in the 2019 NTIS Champions Cup at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, North Carolina, from August 7-25. The age group pairing and dates are as follows:
11U and 13U NTIS Champions Cup: August 7-11
12U and 14U NTIS Champions Cup: August 14-18
15U and 16U NTIS Champions Cup: August 21-25
For more information on the USA Baseball NTIS, open region camps and tryouts, and the most up-to-date news and information about the NTIS, follow @USABaseballNTIS on Twitter.
CHITRE, Panama - Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville, Texas) hit for the cycle and Jack Leiter (Summit, N.J.) was masterful on the mound as Team USA (9-0) defeated Panama 17-2 in the gold medal game of the 2018 COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championship on Sunday at Rico Cedeno Stadium.
The victory marked the fifth consecutive COPABE U-18 Pan-American championship for the stars and stripes and is the eighth-straight gold medal for the USA Baseball 18U National Team in international competitions dating back to 2011.
The U.S. also clinched its spot in the 2019 World Baseball Softball Confederation U-18 Baseball World Cup. Team USA is the four-time defending world champion.
Starting pitcher Leiter set the tone in the gold medal game from the very first pitch for the red, white and blue, striking out five of the first six batters he faced in the first two innings. Leiter (2-0) dominated on the mound, earning the victory and striking out nine batters in his four innings of work.
Offensively, Witt Jr. was the catalyst for the U.S. He kick-started the offense in the bottom of the second inning, collecting a single to centerfield and later scored the first run of the game on two Panama throwing errors.
The stars and stripes blew the game wide open in the third, scoring nine runs on nine hits to give the team a commanding 10-0 lead. Anthony Volpe (Watchung, N.J.) knocked in C.J. Abrams (Alpharetta, Ga.) with an RBI-single for first run of the frame and Riley Greene (Oviedo, Fla.) followed with one of his own in the very next at-bat, extending the lead to three and forcing a Panama pitching change.
Witt Jr. then roped an RBI-double to center to score Volpe from third base and Tyler Callihan (Neptune Beach, Fla.) and C.J. Abrams (Alpharetta, Ga.) both hit RBI-singles to put the U.S. ahead 7-0. Corbin Carroll (Seattle, Wash.) then delivered the big blow in the inning, hitting a two-out, three-run homer to right-centerfield to give Team USA a 10-run advantage.
The stars and stripes scored another two runs in the fourth and fifth innings. Witt Jr. once again got the offense started, leading off the fourth with a triple to left field, and later scored on a groundout by Callihan. Yohandy Morales (Miami, Fla.) then followed with his second home run of the tournament. Witt Jr. completed the cycle in the bottom of the fifth inning with a two-RBI home run to left field, giving the U.S. a 14-0 lead after five.
Team USA scored its last three runs of the game in the bottom of the sixth thanks to a two-RBI double by Pete Crow-Armstrong (Sherman Oaks, Calif.) and Carroll's fourth RBI of the day on a groundout to the first baseman for a 17-1 lead.
Panama scratched another run across the plate in the top of the ninth inning for the final score of 17-2. Collectively, the U.S. pitching staff struck out 14 batters on the day and surrendered just three hits and one earned run.
The U.S. squad was dominant offensively throughout the tournament, outscoring its opponents 131-27 in nine games. The 131 runs scored is the most an 18U National Team has ever scored in an international tournament.
Witt Jr. was named the tournament MVP and he also picked up the best slugger and highest batting average awards after hitting .576 with three doubles, three triples, three home runs and 18 RBI in nine games. In addition to Witt Jr.'s honors, six members of the stars and stripes brought home extra hardware. Carroll received the honor for most stolen bases, Greene received awards for the most RBI and home runs, while Volpe earned the award for most runs scored.
Abrams (CF), Callihan (1B), Drew Romo (The Woodlands, Texas) (C) and Volpe (2B) also earned spots on the all-tournament team.
QUOTES USA Baseball 18U National Team Manager Jack Leggett (On winning the U-18 Pan-American Championship)
"I'm really proud of the way we played. We did all of the things we needed to do to win. We pitched extremely well and had timely hits. We really swung the bats as well as I have ever seen. We played great defense and ran the bases extremely aggressively. I'm just proud to be their coach and we showed what USA Baseball is all about. We were head and shoulders above the others. Proud of how we finished out the tournament."
USA Baseball 18U National Team Director Matt Blood (On winning the U-18 Pan-American Championship)
"I'm really proud of this team and what we accomplished this year. We overcame some hurdles to get where we are, but the guys played really hard and played the game the right way. We scored a lot of runs and they made a pretty strong statement this year. I am proud of what they accomplished."
CHITRE, Panama - Team USA used six home runs to power past Nicaragua 12-3 as the squad wrapped up Super Round play at the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships on Saturday at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama.
With the win, the team improved to 8-0 overall in the tournament and 5-0 in Super Round play.
Team USA got off to a fast start as Riley Greene (Oviedo, Fla.) hit a two-RBI home run in the first inning to give the U.S. a 2-0 lead.
Nicaragua answered in the top of the third to cut the lead to one before the stars and stripes busted the game wide open in the bottom half. With runners on second and third, Corbin Carroll (Seattle, Wash.) hit the team's second homer of the game. Two batters later, Greene knocked his second dinger of the day to extend the lead to 6-1.
In the fourth, Dylan Crews (Longwood, Fla.) joined the action with a two-RBI homer of his own to give Team USA an 8-1 lead. Another solo shot, this time by Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville, Texas), gave the team its fifth home run of the day and a 9-1 advantage.
Nicaragua added its second run in the sixth inning before Tyler Callihan (Neptune Beach, Fla.) hit Team USA's sixth homer of the afternoon in the bottom of the seventh.
After Nicaragua plated a run in the eighth inning, Carroll hit an RBI-triple down the right field line for the final score of 12-3.
Starting pitcher Brennan Malone (Matthews, N.C.) earned his second win of the tournament after hurling three innings and punching out three. Jared Kelley (Refugio, Texas) pitched four innings in relief, striking out two before Sammy Faltine (Richmond, Texas) came in to close the game.
Up next, the United States (8-0; 5-0) will take on the host country, Panama (7-1; 4-1), in the gold medal game of the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships on Sunday, December 2. First pitch is set for 6 p.m. ET at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama.
CHITRE, Panama - Starting pitcher Riley Cornelio's (Monument, Colo.) solid outing on the mound pushed Team USA past Venezuela 12-1 in game three of the Super Round at the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships on Friday at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama. The stars and stripes are now 4-0 in Super Round play.
With the win, the U.S. clinched a spot in Sunday's gold medal game and qualified for the 2019 World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) U-18 Baseball World Cup.
Venezuela got on the board first early in the game, scoring its lone run in the top of the first. Cornelio settled in after that though, pitching five shutout innings while only allowing three hits.
Venezuela's lead didn't last long as Team USA answered with three runs of its own in the bottom half of the first. RBI singles by Anthony Volpe (Watchung, N.J.), Riley Greene (Oviedo, Fla.) and Tyler Callihan (Neptune Beach, Fla.) gave the U.S. a 3-1 lead that it never relinquished.
Two more runs came across for Team USA in the second inning when Yohandy Morales (Miami, Fla.) scored on a groundout and Volpe singled through the right side to score Pete Crow-Armstrong (Sherman Oaks, Calif.). The stars and stripes added another a run in the third inning after an RBI single from Drew Romo (The Woodlands, Texas) to extend the lead to 6-1.
In the fourth frame, Greene recorded his second RBI of the day with a single that scored Carroll to give the U.S. a 7-1 advantage. The stars and stripes then plated five runs in the fifth when Volpe notched his third and fourth RBI with a single and Witt Jr. roped a two-RBI triple before Callihan plated Witt for the final score of 12-1.
Volpe led the way offensively with four RBI and three hits. Cornelio (2-0) earned the win for his efforts on the mound while allowing just five hits and striking out three. Max Rajcic (Fullerton, Calif.) entered the game in relief in the top of the seventh and final inning to close out the game, striking out one batter.
The United States (7-0; 4-0) will wrap up the Super Round of the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships against Nicaragua (4-3; 1-2) on Saturday, December 1. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. ET at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama.
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CHITRE, Panama - Starting pitcher Avery Short (Indianapolis, Ind.) opened the game with six shutout innings as Team USA bested Canada 11-2 to continue Super Round play in the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships on Thursday at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama.
With the win, the stars and stripes improved to 3-0 in the Super Round and are the lone remaining undefeated team in the tournament.
Team USA jumped out to a hot start, scoring two runs in the first inning. With the bases loaded in the bottom of the frame, Riley Greene (Oviedo, Fla.) reached base on a fielder's choice that scored C.J. Abrams (Alpharetta, Ga.) for the first run of the contest. Corbin Carroll (Seattle, Wash.) then scored on a throwing error by Canada to give the red, white and blue a 2-0 lead.
The bats stayed hot for the U.S. in the second inning as Anthony Volpe (Watchung, N.J.) hit a two-RBI single up the middle to push the lead to 4-0. Greene then hit a double down the right-field line to score Volpe, before Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville, Texas) hit an RBI single through the middle to extend the lead to 6-0.
The score would stay the same until the bottom of the sixth inning when Team USA added four more runs for a 10-0 advantage. With men on second and third, Pete Crow-Armstrong (Sherman Oaks, Calif.) singled to center field to clear the bases. In the next at-bat, Drew Romo (The Woodlands, Texas) capped the scoring with a two-run homer to right-center field.
With six scoreless innings of work under his belt, Short stepped on the mound in the seventh, where he pitched one out, before giving up two runs to cut the lead to 10-2. Timmy Manning (Pompano Beach, Fla.) completed the final two outs of the inning before Tyler Callihan (Neptune Beach, Fla.) closed the game with three scoreless innings of relief.
Team USA added its final run of the game in the bottom of the eighth when Crow-Armstrong scored on a wild pitch to make the final score 11-2.
Witt Jr. led the team offensively with four hits in five plate appearances on the day. A trio of players scored three runs to pace the squad, while Greene led the team with three RBI. Short (2-0) earned the win on the mound, striking out four batters on the day.
The United States (6-0; 3-0) will continue the Super Round of the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships against Venezuela (3-1; 1-2) on Friday, November 20. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. ET at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama.
CHITRE, Panama - After facing its first deficit of the tournament, Team USA rallied to drop the host country Panama, 9-8 to open Super Round play of the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships on Wednesday at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama.
Riley Greene (Oviedo, Fla.) opened the scoring when he singled through the right side as Corbin Carroll (Seattle, Wash.) crossed the plate to give Team USA a 1-0 lead. Anthony Volpe (Watchung, N.J.) then added a run after an error by Panama as the stars and stripes jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first.
The lead did not last long, however, as Panama plated four in the top of the second, prompting the U.S. to go to Ryan Hawks (Bowling Green, Kent.) out of the bullpen. With a runner at first and still no outs in the inning, Hawks forced a double play and a grounder to end the inning.
With Team USA facing its first deficit of the tournament, it scored three runs in the bottom of the third to regain the lead 5-4. Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville, Texas) drove in the first run of the inning with an RBI-double to right field. In the next at-bat, Tyler Callihan (Neptune Beach, Fla.) reached on an error as Witt Jr. scored to even the game. Drew Romo (The Woodlands, Texas) followed with an RBI-single to right field to retake the lead.
After Panama scored a run in the fourth to tie the game, Team USA added three runs in the home half of the inning to regain its advantage. Greene continued his hot streak with an RBI-double to the right side to plate Carroll. With the bases loaded, the stars and stripes scored two more runs on a hit by pitch and a walk to take the lead, 8-5.
The red, white and blue added its final run of the game when Carroll hit a no-doubt home run in the bottom of the fifth to extend the lead to 9-5.
In the seventh, Panama trimmed the lead to 9-8 and forced a U.S. pitching change. Jacob Meador (Burleson, Texas) came into the game to relieve Hawks and was stellar in his three innings of relief, earning the save while striking out four. With the Panamanian crowd buzzing in the top of the ninth as the game-tying runner at the plate, Meador sat Panama down in order to end the game.
For his efforts, Hawks (1-0) earned the win on the mound, striking out two batters in five innings pitched. All nine batters earned a hit in the contest for Team USA, while four players led the team with two apiece. Carroll paced the team with three runs scored on the day.
The United States (5-0) will continue the Super Round of the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships against Canada (4-1) on Thursday, November 29. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. ET at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama.
SANTIAGO DE VERAGUAS, Panama - Team USA used a 13-6 win over the Dominican Republic to clinch the No. 1 overall seed in the Super Round of the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships on Wednesday at Estadio Omar Torrijos Herrera in Santiago de Veraguas, Panama.
Brennan Malone (Matthews, N.C.) got the start on the mound for the U.S. and opened the game with four shutout innings, striking out four while allowing just three hits.
After a scoreless start to the contest for both teams, the stars and stripes exploded for five runs in the bottom of the third to take a commanding lead. The first run of the afternoon came on an RBI-double down the left field line by Anthony Volpe (Watchung, N.J.) that scored Drew Romo (The Woodlands, Texas). Riley Greene (Oviedo, Fla.) then stepped up to the plate with two runners on base and hit a three-run home run to deep left-center field to give the U.S. squad a 4-0 advantage. On the very next at-bat, Bobby Witt Jr. (Colleyville, Texas) got in on the fun, hitting a solo homer to right field to extend the lead to 5-0.
The bats stayed hot in the fourth as Team USA added four more runs in the bottom of the inning, highlighted by an RBI-double to right field by Romo. The four runs gave the U.S. squad a 9-0 lead going into the fifth before Romo continued his strong offensive day and pushed the lead to double digits with an RBI-single to right field in the sixth.
The Dominican Republic scored its first runs of the day in the top of the sixth, cutting the lead to 10-4 before Corbin Carroll (Seattle, Wash.) scored on a balk in the bottom half to get one back for the U.S. and make the score 11-4. After both teams went scoreless in the seventh, the Dominican Republic added another run in the top of the eighth to cut the deficit to six.
In the bottom of the inning, C.J. Abrams (Alpharetta, Ga.) hit a single up the middle and sped around the bases to score on a three-base error by the Dominican Republic center fielder. Two more runs in the inning for Team USA made the score 13-5 going into the final frame. Tyler Callihan (Neptune Beach, Fla.) took the mound to close the game out in the top of the ninth and, despite the Dominican Republic pushing one across on an error, secured the 13-6 win.
Volpe and Callihan each registered three hits to lead the team on the day. Greene paced the team with three RBI in the game. Malone (1-0) earned the win on the mound for the U.S. while Max Rajcic (Fullerton, Calif.) struck out five in 2.2 innings of relief.
The United States will begin the Super Round of the COPABE U-18 Pan-American Championships against the host country, Panama, on Wednesday, November 28. First pitch is set for 6 p.m. ET at Rico Cedeno Stadium in Chitre, Panama.