RAPIDS, Iowa – The Reds Midwest Scout Team had to be careful not to
take this year's Kernels Foundation Championship for granted after
winning the tournament a year ago. They also made the most of their
paid invitation to the WWBA World Championship in Jupiter, advancing
to the semifinals before losing to the eventual champions, Marucci
secure a playoff berth the Reds had to record one more win in pool
play against the Midwest Rangers Scout Team, who also were 2-0
think we're in good shape,” Head Coach Andy Stack, who also serves
as the Reds Area Scout, said of his team's chances prior to Game 3.
“We're running a pretty good pitcher out there in Jake Sparger,
hoping we keep hitting like we have been and play our game. (The
Midwest Rangers Scout Team) obviously have had a good run, and we
match up pretty well against them, so it's time to throw our guys out
there and see what happens.”
Reds Midwest Scout Team ended up winning the game to advance,
out-scoring the Rangers Scout Team 8-0. Perfect Game All-American
Ryan Boldt hit an RBI single in the first, and it turned out that
would be the only run starter Jacob Sparger would need. He went the
distance, striking out eight batters in six innings of work,
following up an impressive complete game performance on Saturday by
Bokich did a great job yesterday going seven so that helped us with
one reliever not having to pitch,” said Stack. “In our first
game we were lucky to get out of there in four, so we saved a couple
of innings there.”
used only four pitchers in the Reds three pool play games, and
out-scored their opponents 30-3 despite the fact that they no
longer have the imposing presence of 2011 Kernels MVP Nathan Mikolas
in their lineup.
think surprisingly offensively we're probably more consistent from
top to bottom,” Stack said of his lineup. “We don't have the big
banger in (Nathan) Mikolas and the consistency of Chad Johnson, but
one through nine our guys might swing it a little better on average.”
the big bat in the middle of their order, the team has relied on more
of a team effort to score runs. Shortstop Josh VanMeter had a huge
game on Saturday in which he went 3-for-3 with a pair of home runs.
has been one of our more consistent guys all year,” Stack said.
“He plays great defense at short, has been hitting in the
three-hole, and when we got Ryan Boldt back it was nice to bump him
up and have a good 1-2-3. He's got a good left-handed swing and
makes consistent, hard contact.”
Bryce Only and Mason McCoy came up big in the Reds' first game on
Saturday, each going 3-for-3. Only drove in two and scored three
times while McCoy hit a double, triple and a home run, driving in
Game 3, Jacob Germann went 2-for-2 with three RBI.
Boldt, a member of last year's championship team, returned to the
Reds this weekend. Fresh off of a busy and successful summer in
which he was named the MVP of the Perfect Game All-American Classic
and claimed the Gold Medal serving as the leadoff hitter for Team
USA's 18u National Team that won the XXV IBAF
18U Baseball World Championship held in Seoul, Korea.
relative unknown entering last year's Kernels Championship, Boldt
made the most to show what he was made of. He quickly opened the
eyes of observers, winning the Fastest Man competition with a timed
speed of 6.50 second in the 60-yard dash and hit .350 with numerous
key hits throughout the event, leading to six runs scored and five
wasn't too long ago that Boldt was playing with another organization
playing in this year's Kernels Foundation tournament, although he
wasn't getting regular playing time with the program's No. 1 team.
Allison from Iowa Western is an associate scout for me and he's
probably one of the best-kept secrets in college baseball when it
comes to recruiting,” Stack said of how he discovered Boldt. “That
guy sees more players and remember more names than I do, and I see a
lot of guys.
saw (Boldt) at a Blizzard event in the winter and he was on their
schedule to play with their B team or younger team and I called up
his dad and asked him if he wanted to do something a little higher
level and they accepted and we're happy to have him. Credit to Rob
Allison, he saw the kid and liked the approach and I'm the lucky
beneficiary of it.”
given the opportunity to excel at a high level on a more national
stage, Boldt continues to improve. He was invited to the Perfect
Game National Showcase which led to yet another invitation, one to
participate at the Perfect Game All-American Classic.
6-foot-1, 185-pound outfielder from Red Wing, Minn. not only has
game-changing speed, but he also has a strong arm (89 mph from the
outfield at the National) and a potent left-handed swing, which led
to a 2-for-3 day at the Classic, including a triple, on his way to
being named MVP.
was a fun time out there in San Diego, that's for sure,” Boldt said
of the honor being named an All-American. “I met a lot of good
guys and good players. I learned a lot this summer and played with a
lot of great players. I learned a lot mentally from the coaches
along the way, and it's been a great experience.”
got a chance to be pretty special,” Stack added of Boldt's talents.
“He had a really good summer, obviously winning the Gold with Team
USA, being the PG All-American MVP and he did really well at the Area
Codes. For me he's in the top 4-5 outfielders in his class when you
take the whole country, NCAA and high school. That's pretty high
praise for a kid from Minnesota.
plays hard, and he's kind of an old school looking kid, more of a
grinder. He'll surprise you with that speed. He beat out two ground
balls to the second baseman yesterday and he tripled in his first
at-bat, and before I looked up from watching the ball he was already
rounding second base. When he gets those legs stretched out it's fun
to Boldt's participation with Team USA, this was the first weekend
that he had played with Stack's Reds team. Despite being unfamiliar
with his teammates, he hasn't missed a beat, going 3-for-6 in pool
play with a triple, three runs scored, four driven in and four walks
been playing well so far,” Boldt commented on his initial
impression of his team. “I've been meeting the new guys, this is
my first week playing with some of them. There are some good guys
here so hopefully we win this thing again.”
soft-spoken Boldt is quick to share the credit with his teammates at
every stop he has made. He also excels in the classroom, drawing
praise from his coach for his character in addition to his five-tool
top notch kid, I think he's near the top of his class, a 4.0
student,” Stack said of Boldt's qualities off the field. “You
couldn't ask for a better kid, and when you mention the tools he's
got every one. The only (question) right now is power, but with his
frame and strength I think the power is going to come later.”
is frequently compared to Darin Erstad as they share similar
qualities as multi-tooled, hard-nosed midwestern outfielders who are
dedicated to getting better and will never be out-hustled. It's not
a surprise that Boldt has committed to play for Erstad at Nebraska,
who quietly is adding some promising recruits to his 2013-14 class.
remember him a little bit,” Boldt said of Erstad's playing career.
“I heard a bunch of things over the summer about how hard he
played. It would be great to play for a guy like that.
coaching there with Coach Erstad, Coach Bolt and Coach Silva there a
bunch of great guys who are putting their program on the right path
and hopefully we'll have some great years to come.”
the meantime, Boldt and his Reds Midwest Scout Team teammates have
more games to win if they are to repeat as champions.
team enters the playoffs ranked as the No. 2 seed, has a fresh
pitching staff and experience handling the pressure of being in the
a great event with all of the Midwest guys showing off what they can
do,” Boldt said. “It would be great to win this thing again for
Coach Stack and get that free trip down to Jupiter. It's a great
tournament to be a part of and a great experience.”
think we're in good shape,” Stack added. “We have a guy to come
back and start tonight if we make the playoffs and some guys we
haven't pitched yet for the Monday's games and then bring some of
those guys who pitched short innings back.
we can keep that up I like our chances.”