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World Championship Day 1 recap

Tournaments : : Story
David Rawnsley        
Published: Friday, October 25, 2013

WWBA World Championship content hub

Contributing: Todd Gold, Frankie Piliere, Jheremy Brown

Follow the PG scouts on Twitter: @DavidRawnsleyPG | @TGold_PG | @FPilierePG | @JBrownPG

Players listed are in the class of 2014 unless otherwise noted

JUPITER, Fla. -- The Ontario Blue Jays are the barnstormers of baseball. Since September 13 the organization has played against at least 29 different college teams from Iowa to Arkansas, from Indiana to Florida and everywhere in between. They’ve also played top programs such as Virginia and North Carolina.

So when faced with the prospect of facing EvoShield Canes righthander Grant Holmes (Conway, N.C.) in their first game, head coach Dan Bleiwas was typically honest and straight forward in his comments. “We might not be the most talented team in the tournament but if there is any team here who can handle low to mid-90s velocity, it’s these kids. They hit against it every day.

Bleiwas proved prophetic in one way. Although the Blue Jays lost 1-0, they only struck out twice against Holmes (four innings) and top 2015 southpaw Logan Allen (Fletcher, N.C.).

Holmes had an unusual outing. He was 90-92 while touching 93 mph in the first two innings, and his curveball had a flat slider shape to it. In the last two innings his fastball jumped up to 93-96 while touching 97 mph, and his curveball had better 11-to-7 shape to it. It’s always exciting to see young pitchers maintain their velocity through an outing but to see velocity increase Justin Verlander-style is very unusual. Holmes only threw 49 pitches and should be set up well to come back if the Canes make the playoffs as anticipated.

Grant Holmes

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