The 2011 Grad National Showcase Tournament opened the day with each team going through an infield workout.
The Royal team opened things up and the standouts were Austin Bailey (Temecula, CA), Steven Palares (Corona, CA), and Phillip Evans(Carlsbad, CA) made it look easy in the infield, while Daniel Camerena (Bonita, CA) looked good in the outfield.
The Red team was up next and Rio Ruiz (Covina, CA) showed good hands and an easy arm, Michael Glomb (San Jose, CA) also showed good infield actions, and Ryan Garvey(Indian Wells, CA) showed highest level defensive ability at first base.
Two Players from Florida showed well in the outfield for the Gold Team. Yecid Tarazona (Miramar, FL) and Ryan Whaley (Pompano Beach, FL) moved well and displayed good arm strength. Tyler Beede(Auburn, MA) and Aaron Collazo (San Antonio, TX) had smooth actions and made the plays in the infield with Beede displaying the top infield arm.
The Steel team’s pitchers had to be looking forward to having Andres Rodriguez(La Mirada, CA), Brandon Martin(Corona, CA) and Scott Heineman(Pacific Palasades, CA) play the infield behind them. All three were very smooth in the infield with plenty of arm strength.
The guys who looked the best throwing from behind the plate were Jean Ramirez(Fort Worth, TX), Cameron Saylor(West Covina, CA), Tyler Rahier(San Bernadino, CA) and RJ Ybarra(Riverside, CA). They all showed strong arms and good fundamentals from the catching position.
Batting Practice was next with the Royal team once again kicking things off. The most impressive BP was taken by Travis Harrison(Aliso Viejo, CA). He continues to make his case as the top bat in the class after being named MVP of the WWBA 17U, Travis took a very good BP with the ball flying off his barrel to all fields including two that were launched over the 375 sign in left center field. Others who impressed were Thomas Nilsen (Temecula, CA), Austin Bailey, Jean Ramirez, Steven Pallares, Brett Geren(Danville, CA), Max Homick(San Diego, CA), Daniel Camarena, RJ Ybarra, and Phillip Evans.
The ball was flying off Christian Lopes bat during the Red teams BP session. He showed serious juice driving the ball to all fields. Rio Ruiz showed very well with outstanding batspeed and a good approach to all fields. He is one of the top 2012 two way players to watch.
Ty France(West Covina, CA) is another top 2012 bat to follow. The ball jumps off his bat as he showed good bat speed and strength. Other top batting practice performers for the Steel team included, Andres Rodriguez, Brandon Martin, Daniel Arellano(Corona, CA) and Rouric Bridgewater(Pomona, CA).
Ryan Whaley and Michael Gunn(Wilson, AR) showed the best for the Gold Team during their BP session.
Game 1 Highlights
The Royal team opened up the game portion with a 2-0 win over the Red team led by LHP Max Homick and 3B/OF Travis Harrison. Max Homick picked up the win throwing the first four innings facing the minimum and striking out five while allowing one hit. Homick pitched in the mid 80’s topping out at 85 mixing in a solid curveball and change. Harrison hit an absolute moon shot off the nets protecting the tennis courts on the SC campus that would have traveled 400+ feet. Thomas Nilsen and Brett Geren each doubled for the victors. Austin Bailey made some outstanding defensive plays for the Royal team.
Many Red pitchers were very impressive in defeat. LHP Kenny Mathews(Diamond Bar, CA) effortlessly pitched 85-86mph with very good life. His arm really works and there is more velo to come. His breaking ball showed potential and he is one to watch. He was followed by RHP Ryan Keller(Castaic, CA) who pitched 87-89 topping out at 90mph. He showed the makings of a nice breaking ball and struck out the side in his inning of work. RHP Rio Ruiz was next with a very fast arm and pitched 88-90mph. His offspeed has potential showing the other part of his outstanding two way ability.
Game 2 Highlights
Zane Affleck(New Harmony, UT) made an outstanding, run saving, diving play at 3B to preserve the Gold teams 3-2 victory over the Steel team. Michael Gunn was very good on the mound and at the plate hitting an RBI double before getting on the mound and striking out six in three innings of works. The southpaw topped out at 86mph and showed good off-speed and the ability to pitch to both sides of the plate. Trevor Jaunich(Delano, MN) had two doubles and Ryan Bull(Eden Prairie, MN) also had two hits.
Blake Burrell(Moreno Valley, CA) started for the Steel team showing a fast arm and pitching 87-89 topping out at 90mph. Chaz Meadows(Concord, CA) and Rick Ramirez(Suratoga, CA) each went 2-2 in defeat. Julien Plana(Miami, FL) doubled for the Steel Team.
Check Back for updates from Day Two of the Event.