DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball named the inaugural 16U National Team Development Program roster on Friday, following the conclusion of the National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida. The 16U NTDP will take place at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, North Carolina, August 3-7.
The National Team Development Program offers identified athletes an opportunity to connect with USA Baseball staff to better prepare for future national team experiences. 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 people and players.
"USA Baseball is excited to launch the 16U National Team Development Program, in 2018, with these 36 elite-level athletes," said Matt Blood, USA Baseball's Director of 18U National Team. "The addition of the 16U age level to our development process will help improve USA Baseball's reach and familiarity with future national team players. We have a great coaching staff and itinerary lined up for the week which should make for a memorable experience for all involved."
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 Identification Series (NTIS) and the National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida served as the primary identification events for the 16U National Team Development Program. In total, 21 of the athletes on the roster are new to USA Baseball following their participation in sanctioned identification events.
Nine athletes on the 36-man roster are USA Baseball national team alumni, including six members of the 2017 15U National Team that won a gold medal at the COPABE Pan Am "AA" Championships in Cartagena, Colombia. Additionally, four athletes played on the 2014 12U National Team and nine have previously participated within the National Team Development Program at the 14U event in 2016. Infielder Robert Moore is making his fourth appearance with USA Baseball in 2018 after he was a member of the 12U and 15U national teams and the 14U NTDP.
Three-time USA Baseball national team coach and seven-time NTDP field coordinator, Eric Kibler, has been selected to serve as the 16U event's first-ever field coordinator in 2018. University of Dayton Head Coach Jayson King will join Kibler on staff as the manager of the Stripes team, while Bill Mosiello, who is currently the associate head coach at Texas Christian University, will manage the Stars team.
In addition to three intrasquad games, the 16U NTDP will face-off against the 2018 15U National Team on August 6 and 7 as the 15U team prepares for the World Baseball Softball Confederation U-15 Baseball World Cup in David, Panama. Both games will take place on Coleman Field at the USA Baseball National Training Complex and will be streamed live on USABaseball.com and USA Baseball's Facebook and YouTube pages.
For more information on the National Team Development Program please visit USABaseball.com or follow @USABaseballNTDP on Twitter.
The roster for the 16U National Team Development program is as follows:
2018 16U National Team Development Program Roster
(Name; Position; Hometown)
Philip Abner; LHP; Charlotte, N.C.
Walter Ahuna; IF; Hilo, Hawaii
^Matthew Bardowell; RHP; Fontana, Calif.
*Hunter Barnhart; RHP; Paso Robles, Calif.
Braylon Bishop; OF; Ashdown, Ark.
^Nick Bitsko; RHP/OF; Doylestown, Pa.
^Irving Carter; RHP; Boynton Beach, Fla.
*^Jonathan Cymrot; RHP; San Jose, Calif.
Joe Dixon; RHP; South Jordan, Utah
Drew Dowd; LHP; Belmont, Calif.
Ross Dunn; LHP; Salt Lake City, Utah
^Hunter Haas; IF; Phoenix, Ariz.
Miles Halligan; RHP; Plymouth, Minn.
*Petey Halpin; OF; San Mateo, Calif.
*^Rawley Hector; RHP; Van Alstyne, Texas
Cason Henry; RHP; Florence, Ala.
Jesse Herrera III; C; San Antonio, Texas
Reece Holbrook; OF; Hammond, S.C.
Sam Hunt; C; Minneapolis, Minn.
Kennedy Jones; OF; Norfolk, Va.
Blaze Jordan; IF; Southaven, Miss.
Jordan Lawlar; IF; Irving, Texas
Caleb Lomavita; RHP/UTIL; Ewa Beach, Hawaii
Landen Looper; RHP; Frankfort, Ill.
Marcelo Mayer; IF; Chula Vista, Calif.
^Jayden Melendez; C; Miami, Fla.
Ian Moller; C; Dubuque, Iowa
Christian Moore; IF; Brooklyn, N.Y
*^Robert Moore; IF/RHP; Leawood, Kan.
*Izaac Pacheco; IF; Friendswood, Texas
*^Roc Riggio; OF; Simi Valley, Calif.
Austin Stracener; IF/RHP; New Braunfels, Texas
*Grant Taylor; RHP; Florence, Ala.
Hunter Teplansky; IF/RHP; Temple, Texas
Jabin Trosky; IF; Carmel, Calif.
*Tanner Witt; IF/RHP; Houston, Texas
*Denotes National Team alumnus
^Denotes National Team Development Program participan