The National (Purple) team defeated the West (Vegas Gold) Tuesday afternoon 5-4 at the University of San Diego to win the 2014 PG Underclass All-American Games and cap an eventful week in the city of San Diego.
Purple led the entire game, including 5-1 for a few brief moments in the seventh inning, before a late Vegas Gold rally fell short.
Ten Purple hitters had hits during the contest, including a pair of singles off the bat of IF Kyle Crowl (Council Bluffs, IA). IF Andres Sosa (San Antonio, TX) and OF Ronald Washington (Houston, TX) delivered key hits in the team's three-run seventh inning.
Each team used five pitchers during the nine inning contest, with Purple RHP Blair Henley (Fort Worth, TX) picking up the win with three innings of one-hit/one-run baseball that featured five strikeouts. Henley will occupy a prominent spot on the event Top Prospect list, as the 6-foot-2, 175 pound 2016 grad pitched consistently in the 87-89 mph range with an 81 mph slider that was the best breaking ball of the event.
RHP Garrett Stallings (Chesapeake, VA) also threw three innings for Purple and showed similar velocity as Henley on his fastball, although not quite the polish and quality on his secondary offerings.
OF/RHP Nicholas Baldor (Tampa, FL) picked up the save with a perfect ninth inning of work and also singled and scored the first Purple run.
Although the Purple team drew players from 11 different states, it had a particular Iowa flavor and the five Iowa players gathered for a picture at home plate after the game. Crowl, LHP/OF Spencer Van Scoyoc (Cedar Rapids, IA), OF Kace Massner (Burlington, IA), 1B Bryce Ball (Mason City, IA) and 3B Joey Polak (Quincy, IL, but plays for the Iowa Select team) all contributed to the Purple victory.
Vegas Gold OF Mickey Moniak (Encinitas, CA) did his best to keep his team in the game, drilling a home run off Henley for the first Vegas Gold home run and adding an RBI single later in the game. Moniak is a high level hitter with very quick hands and his ability to pull those hands in quickly on a upper 80's inside fastball from Henley was very impressive.
OF Geoff McCalley (San Diego, CA) narrowly missed tying the game in the bottom of the eighth inning when his blast to right field went off the top of the Cunningham Field wall.
Four of Vegas Gold's five pitchers were primary position players, which didn't impact the quality of their stuff. RHP Jimmy Boyce (North Bend, WA) got his team off to a good start with three solid innings of work, featuring an 84-86 mph fastball and a tantalizing change up. Two of his position player relievers, 3B/RHP Ray Gaither (Coppell, TX) and C/RHP Logan Boyer (Chandler, AZ) were especially impressive, with each sitting at 90 mph during their one inning outings and Boyer topping out at an event high 91 mph.