Photo: Perfect Game

Florida Qualifier ready to roll

Tournaments : : Story
Jeff Dahn        
Published: Thursday, October 11, 2012

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Please forgive Florida Burn standout Dalton Guthrie for momentarily confusing his Perfect Game tournaments. Sometimes these big stages tend to run together.

It was less than a week ago that Guthrie helped the Florida Burn Orange, a team coached by his father, former big-league left-hander Mark Guthrie,  win the PG WWBA Underclass World Championship. The title awarded the Florida Burn Orange a PG national championship trophy and PG national championship rings for its team members, but for just a moment, Guthrie forgot what he was playing for.

"We expected to do well in this tournament," he said during his team's championship run last weekend. "This is the tournament that gets you into Jupiter, right? We're looking forward to missing school if we can get to that, too, but we're trying to perform and get seen and help each other reach our goals."

The younger Guthrie was off one week. The PG WWBA Underclass World Championship title didn't get the Florida Burn Orange an automatic paid invitation to the PG WWBA World Championship at the end of the month, but winning this weekend's PG WWBA Florida Qualifier certainly will.

The 9th annual PG WWBA Florida Qualifier begins Friday night with four games at Terry Park and one at City of Palms Park. Pool-play continues through Sunday morning with the first round of the 16-team playoffs and the quarterfinals scheduled for Sunday afternoon. The semifinals and championship game will be played Monday morning at the jetBlue Player Development Complex.

While identified as the Florida Qualifier, the 56-team tournament features squads from not only Florida, but from Mississippi, Georgia, New Jersey, New York and Texas. There are also five teams from Puerto Rico and two Blue Jays teams from Ontario, Canada.

Fort Myers-based SWFL 18u is the defending champion and will bring another strong team to the tournament this year. Catchers Hayden Platt (2013, Naples, Fla.) and Michael Mann (2013, Seminole, Fla.) are both top-500 prospects and have committed to Central Florida and South Florida, respectively. Left-hander Sean Labsan (2013, Sarasota, Fla.) is a Florida Atlantic commit.

Fresh off their championship at the WWBA Underclass World, the Florida Burn have added eight 2013 prospects to their roster, including right-hander Cooper Hammond (2013, Venice, Fla.), a Miami recruit.

Catcher Kyle Gilbert (2014, Lake Mary, Fla.) and left-hander Zeke Pietrzyk (2014, Estero, Fla.) were named the Most Valuable Player and Most Valuable Pitcher, respectively, at last week's WWBA Underclass World Championship.

Chet Lemon's Juice won this championship in 2010, and returns this year with a roster that includes right-hander Tyler Danish (2013, Valrico, Fla.). Danish is No. 96 in the national prospect rankings for the class of 2013, and is the 265th overall prospect in the 2013 draft, according to PG's Allan Simpson.

Five FTB teams (Black, Clutch, Mizuno, Red, Royal) are entered and all will challenge for the title. SWFL also has 16u and 17u teams in the tournament field.

This tournament has a rich history of attracting top talent, with 155 alumni having been picked in one of the first 10 rounds of the MLB amateur draft. 2012 1st round pick Lewis Brinson and 1st round compensation selections Keon Barnum and Zach Eflin all played in this tournament last year, and Barnum played in it three times.

Recent Related Articles
15u Travel Team Rankings
Banditos Black finish 2016 as the No. 1 travel team at the 15u age division after a dominant summer and fall season that incl... READ 
16u Travel Team Rankings
The final rankings for 2016 at the 16u age level are now available with the Central Florida Gators retaining the top spot aft... READ 
17u Travel Team Rankings
The travel team rankings for the 17u age division have been updated one last time for the 2016 season with AZ T-Rex Rawlings ... READ 
Most Viewed Related Articles
World Championship Pool Preview
One-by-one PG will break down each of the 22 pools, A-V, set to compete at the 2016 WWBA World Championship in Jupiter, Fla.,... READ 
Underclass World All-Tournament
The All-Tournament Team from the 2016 WWBA Underclass World Championship, held October 6-10 in Fort Myers, Fla., is now avail... READ 
World Championship Bracket
The 2016 WWBA World Championship Bracket has been released. READ 
 



Keywords in this article
       Player Profile Page    Event Page
About Perfect Game :: Contact us :: Site Map
Copyright 1994-2016 by Perfect Game. All rights reserved. No portion of this information may be reprinted or reproduced without the written consent of Perfect Game.