The Oakland A's picked Robertson who was selected with the 34th overall pick as compensation for the loss of free agent Josh Willingham, who signed with the Minnesota Twins. He batted .560 with six home runs and 31 RBI in 27 games this year. Robertson added 29 walks for a .696 on-base percentage and struck out just six times. He also batted .545 as junior
ABD ACADEMY: Welcome
ABD Parents, Players, Fans, Scouts, Recruiters, Coaches and ABD Alumni
We have upgraded our site. Please click to access.
We will keep this website in place but will not be updated from 3/15/2013 on.
Wednesday, March 13
Andy Wise is set to join the ABD coaching staff in the summer and assist in the development of HS pitchers. Wise is the current Varsity Head Coach at Corona HS and led the Panthers to the CIF Finals at Dodger Stadium in 2012. He was named co-coach of the year in 2012 by HSGT.
Wise originally signed with the Chicago Cubs in 1995 and he finished his career 2001. Along the way he got to learn under such baseball men as Jim Riggleman, Fergie Jenkins, Hal Lanier, Bob Kipper, Greg Hibbard, and Dick Dietz to name a few.
Wise spent 1992-94 in the bullpen at Long Beach State, pitching in the College World Series during the 1993 season. During his 2 years at CSULB, the 49rs were the Big West Conference champions both seasons. Since retired, two-time Division 1 national coach of the year Dave Snow was running the program, with Mike Weathers (current CSULB head coach), and Steve Rousey (current CSU Northridge head coach) rounding out an amazing staff. During the 1991-92 seasons Wise played at Santa Ana College under California Community College all-time wins leader Don Sneddon. The Dons won back to back Orange Empire Conference championships during his time there. One among many commons between both programs was sports psychologist Ken Ravizza (California Angels, CSULB, CSUF, several olympic programs, etc.), who is one of the more recognized experts in his field. At Santa Ana, Ravizza introduced several stratagies to help deal with the mental side of the game. At Long Beach State, Ravizza gave twice a week, 2 hour sessions to the team giving Wise further opportunity to learn more about the mental game.
Wise started his coaching career at La Quinta high school in Westminster, working with Orange County all-time wins leader Dave Demerest. There he not only learned how to run a successful program, he learned first hand about the recruiting process of such touted players as Ian Kennedy, Ian Stewart, the Laird brothers, the Crosby brothers, and many others in between. The Aztecs won the CIF championship at Anahiem Stadium during the 2003 season.
Wise has also coached travel/club baseball in Orange County, and in doing so has taken some successful teams (Santa Ana Stallions, OC Dawgs) all around the country facing the nation's best competition.
Andy Wise and ABD President Randy Curtis were teammates as kids growing up (11U-14U) in Fountain Valley. They won the 12U Pony World Series in the 1983 and were undefeated freshman Champs at Los Amigos High School in 1986.
Saturday, January 26
Rosters and Schedules for the summer will be posted
||Sunday March 24th, 2013
Riverside Community College (RCC)
||Open To All 2014 ABD Players
|SESSION 1 CHECK IN 11:30AM
| SEESION 2 CHECK IN 2:30PM
Thursday, March 7
Have you ever wondered what "ABD" stands for? I am positive most of our players have no Clue to this question. I know we get asked this very question dozens of times a year so I had an idea to incorporate the answer into a design for 2013.
So you know, ABD Stands for "Amateur Baseball Development" (ABD). The name was created in 1992 and wasn't until 1993 that the Traitional red, white and blue ABD logo was used on our uniforms. Believe it or not - our first team was called "Power Stroke" annd was a 13U team made up of players from the Corona and Riverside area. I remeber our 1st tournament was in Perris in the fall of 1992 and we won the event (got lucky).
This team featured two players who would end up facing each other in CIF finals at Dodger stadium 5 years later. Rob Watson was our second basemen and hit towards the bottom of the lineup. He was your typical average player and was small in stature. THen you had Dustin Wagner who was our Ace and hit in the middle of the lineup. It was very fitting that the two of them Pitched against each other 5 years later in the CIF Finals at Dodger stadium becasue the two were opposites 5 years earlier. In case you are wondering Dustin and Corona HS won the game vs Rob and his Poly HS.
Rob went on to play JC college in Oklahoma and ended up at Oklahoma State as their SS and pitched as well. From there Rob was drafted and went on to play professionaly for many years and now resides in Oklahoma with his wife and son. Last year Rob was inducted into the ABD Hall Of Fame and occasionally coaches for the ABD program.
Dustin never played in College. Its an interesting story because Rob continued with ABD during those 5 years while Dusin was in and out within 1 year (I'm just sayin.....)
Back to the logo - sorry. We are big on Tradition at ABD and have a solid foundation but I thought it would be fitting to have a new design to help signify what ABD is all about and when it all began. We Hope you like it. THe new Logo will not replace the traditional ABD logo and will only be used on some marketing materials for the program in 2013.
Tuesday, March 5
Parents and players,
This summer, ABD plans on partnering up with Major League Baseball in bringing over 8-10 Chinese high school players to California. Four years ago, Major League Baseball established two player development centers in Wuxi and Changzhou, China, hoping to eventually produce future big league talent.
Now, MLB China would like to send 8-10 of their better players over to California for a few weeks in the summer to engulf them in American baseball as well as immerse them in an English speaking environment. We are currently looking for ABD high school families that are interested in hosting one of these Chinese players for 3 weeks, starting in late June and going into mid July. Hosting a player would involve taking the player along with your son to any ABD events as well as any EM training sessions. Not only will hosting a player provide your son and family with a rich cultural experience, but it also presents an interesting and exciting connection with Major League Baseball. Plans for this summer program are moving forward and we hope to have you participate by hosting a player.
Please email or call me if you are interested. More details will be released in the near future.
Robert PalmerABD Armour/MLB China firstname.lastname@example.org 951-206-3042
Andy Rojo joins ABD as the new Recruiting Director for the upcoming 2013 season. Rojo will evaluate all High School players within the ABD academy and utilize his college recruiting experience and knowledge to best determine where a player’s current and future skills project. Utilizing his vast network and ability to effectively communicate with professional scouts and college recruiters will assure ABD players will be provided with the best exposure and guidance during the college recruiting process as well as professional draft.
As the former recruiting coordinator for Long Beach State from 2008 through 2010, Rojo also served as the team’s hitting coach while working with the outfielders and serving as the team's first base coach. During his 3 year tenure at Long Beach State, 23 Dirtbags were selected in the MLB Draft with a school record 11 players drafted after the 2008 season. In total, 11 of these 23 players drafted were taken in the Top 10 rounds including current big leaguers Danny Espinosa, Vance Worley, Bryan Shaw, Adam Wilk and Nick Vincent.
Rojo currently serves as the associate head coach to Dennis Rogers at Riverside Community College. Prior to leaving RCC for Long Beach State, RCC won the 2007 state championship behind a 37-18 record, the program’s fourth state title. In seven combined seasons at his alma mater, RCC has gone 218-106 for a .672 winning percentage. During his tenure at RCC, Rojo has recruited and helped develop current and former big leaguers Tommy Hanson, Thomas Neal, Bobby Kielty, Greg Dobbs, Brian Stokes and Jeff Bajenaru. In addition to player development, RCC’s recruiting classes have received several pre-season No. 1 rankings in California, with the 2007 state championship class receiving a No. 2 national ranking.
Rojo finished up his playing career at Cal Poly Pomona in 1996 as an all-conference shortstop, graduating Magna Cum Laude with a degree in History, after spending the 1995 season at the University of Florida as a reserve infielder. As a starter during his sophomore season at RCC in 1994, he earned second-team all-Orange Empire Conference honors and earned the team's Golden Glove Award. He was also named the school's Male Student-Athlete of the Year after making the Dean's List all four semesters. A 1992 graduate of Etiwanda High School, he was a two-year letter winner and team MVP as a senior.
Off the field, Rojo was a featured speaker at the 2008 American Baseball Coaches Association's National Convention in Philadelphia where he teamed up with his former college coach Dennis Rogers and presented on infield development.
|ABD NATIONAL TEAMS TRYOUTS
2014 -2016 ABD BULLDOGS & ABD UNDER ARMOUR NATIONAL TEAM TRYOUTs
SUNDAY MARCH 24TH, 2013
LOCATION: RIVERSIDE COMMUNITY COLLEGE (RCC)
CHECK IN TIME TBA
Friday, February 8
|ABD STAR AUSTIN WILSON - OF STANFORD|
Friday, February 8
|CSF - PRE SEASON #1|
Tuesday, February 5
ABD Academy, LLC is excited to announce it has signed an exclusive sponsorship agreement with Under Armour through the 2015 season.
"I love Under Armour and I personally wear their stuff all of the time. It made perfect sense to allign ABD with Under Armour's World-Class brand. They are making great strides in developing baseball apparel and products and we want to play a role in its' vision. It's a real win-win situation for The ABD players and Under Armour", Randy Curtis, ABD.
THE UA STORY
Under Armour was founded in 1996 by Kevin Plank, a then 23-year old former special teams captain of the University of Maryland football team. Plank initially began the business from his grandmother's basement in Washington, D.C.
As a fullback at the University of Maryland, Plank got tired of having to change out of the sweat-soaked T-shirts worn under his jersey; however, he noticed that his compression shorts worn during practice stayed dry. This inspired him to make a T-shirt using moisture-wicking synthetic fabric.
After graduating from the University of Maryland, Plank developed his first prototype of the shirt, which he gave to his Maryland teammates and friends who had gone on to play in the NFL. Plank soon perfected the design creating a revolutionary new T-shirt built from microfibers that wicked moisture and kept athletes cool, dry, and light. Major competing brands including Nike, Adidas and Reebok would soon follow in Plank's footsteps with their own version of Under Armour's moisture-wicking apparel. By the end of 1996, Under Armour had sold 500 Under Armour HeatGear shirts, generating $17,000.
In 1997, Plank had $100,000 in orders to fill and found a factory in Ohio to make the shirts. People began to take notice of the brand when a front page photo of USA Today featured Oakland Raiders quarterback Jeff George wearing an Under Armour mock turtleneck. Following that front page, Under Armour's first major sale came when an equipment manager from Georgia Tech asked Plank for 10 shirts. This deal opened the door to a contract with Arizona State University, North Carolina State and other Division I football teams. With positive reviews from players, word began to spread and orders began to increase.
That same year, Under Armour launched with several new apparel lines including ColdGear, TurfGear, AllseasonGear, and StreetGear
Monday, February 4
Geoff Miller is the new Mental Skills Coach for the ABD Academy and will help it's players in the areas of Intangibles, Baseball IQ, Character Development and Performing at higher levels under pressure.
The majority of Geoff’s time is spent as the Mental Skills Coach for the Atlanta Braves organization. In this role, Geoff is involved with the Braves’ major league team and each of its minor league affiliates, and he conducts psychological evaluations of potential draft selections for the Scouting Department. Geoff has provided mental skills coaching services to two other Major League Baseball teams as well, spending 2005–2009 with the Pittsburgh Pirates and 2010 with the Washington Nationals.
In addition to MLB clients, Geoff has lectured at the national conferences of the National Fire Protection Agency, the Golf Coaches Association of America, and the Gymnastics Association of Texas. He co-authored a chapter on Assessment in Sport Psychology in the Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology. He holds a bachelor of arts degree from the University of California, Riverside, as well as a master’s degree in sport psychology from San Diego State University.
"Geoff is a great addition to the ABD program moving into 2013. Geoff will provide a service that is often overlooked in amateur sports but we feel it's our obligation to provide the Best Training in all areas of baseball and provide for our players every opportunity to develop into great men on and off the field", Randy Curtis, ABD Academy
Geoff will host ABD Mental Skills Workshops for its' players and families beginning Summer 2013.
Michael Spiers - September 4, 1961 - January 18, 2013.
It is with extreme sadness and a heavy heart that I bring you the news that Mike Spiers passed away due to heart failure on Friday January 18th at Loma Linda University Medical Center in Loma Linda, California. Your prayers and thoughts for his family are appreciated in this very difficult time. May God bless Mike for all he has given us and may he now live peacefully, in heaven with his beautiful wife Veronica. All of us will miss you deeply, Mike.
Mike's Funeral Ceremony and Reception will be held on Friday Janaury 25th at 11:00AM at San Manuel Stadium. We encourage all former and current ABD players to wear your ABD jersey to help celebrate Mike.
MIKE SPIERS FUNERAL SERVICE AND RECEPTION FRIDAY JAN. 25, 2013 - 11:00AM
RAIN OR SHINE WE WILL HAVE THE SERVICES AT THE STADIUM. PLEASE BRING UMBRELLA IN CASE OF RAIN.San Manuel Stadium (Home of the Inland Empire 66ers) 280 South E Street San Bernardino, CA 92401
- 11:00AM - 12:00PM - Open Casket Viewing
- 12:00PM -2:00PM - Funeral Service
2:00PM - Reception Gathering (Food and Drinks Provided)
FLOWERS AND CARDS
If you can not attend and were wanting to send flowers or a card. Please have them sent to the Cortner Funeral Chapel by 4:30pm on THursday so they can bring them to the Services.Cortner Funeral Chapel 221 Brookside Ave. Redlands, CA. 92373
|2013 SPRING LEAGUE|
|ABD SPRING LEAGUE INFORMATION|
There will be 10 Teams for the DI Spring League for this coming year (5 of which will be ABD Teams) & 7 Teams in the DII this spring (2 of which will be ABD Teams). To get information on the tryouts for ABD Spring League teams, send an email to email@example.com. Our tryouts for the spring will be February 2nd, 2013 @ RCC.
|2013 ABD SPRING LEAGUE TEAMS|
|5||TEAM VICTORY||Tracy Edmondsonfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|ABD FILM DAY|
|JANUARY 13, 2013|
|RIVERSIDE CITY COLLEGE (RCC)|
|EVANS FIELD - HOME OF THE RCC TIGERS|
|REGISTER HERE NOW ONLY 20 SPOTS LEFT|
CHECK IN 9:00 AM
TIMES 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
For the ABD staff to effeciently and effectively help ABD players with the college recruting process we require you have a custom college recruiting video highlighting your baseball skills.
All uncommitted 2013, 2014 and 2015 Grads we highly recommend you register & attend the ABD Film Day event. We only provide thisopportunity 2 times a year for our players.
ABD is flying in the SKillshow, Inc staff from Seattle Wa. this Sunday the 13th of Janaury. Skillshow is the leader in sports recruiting video and is offering a Huge bulk discount for ABD players.
Thursday, August 2
Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo has been voted National League Rookie of the Month for July. Rizzo becomes the fourth Cubs player to win the award (fifth time), joining Hee-Sop Choi (April 2003), Geovany Soto (April and August 2008) and Darwin Barney (April 2011).
In 25 contests during July, Rizzo led N.L. rookies with 32 hits, seven home runs, 17 RBI and 55 total bases while ranking second in runs scored (14). The 22-year-old ranked third among N.L. rookies with a .330 (32-for-97) batting average, a .567 slugging percentage and a .375 on-base percentage. Rizzo tied Gene Baker (1954) for the most home runs by a Cubs rookie during the month of July and the seven homers were the most in a calendar month by a Cubs rookie since Mel Hall’s nine round-trippers in August 1983. Rizzo also collected eight go-ahead RBI and four game-winning RBI during the month, leading N.L. rookies in both categories. On Sunday, the Florida native clubbed his first career walk-off home run in the bottom of the 10th inning to give the Cubs a 4-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals, capping a 3-for-4 day. In Friday’s series opener, the left-handed-hitting slugger matched a career-best with three RBI (also July 6th and 31st) in a losing effort, as the Cubs lost to the Cardinals, 9-6. Rizzo was 2-for-4 on the day, marking his second consecutive two-hit performance and one of nine multi-hit efforts during the month. The youngster hit safely in 20 of his 25 games in July and collected hits in 23 of his first 29 games since being called up from Triple-A Iowa on June 26th. On July 6th, Rizzo had a career-best four hits, including a three-run, go-ahead homer to lead the Cubs to an 8-7 victory over the New York Mets at Citi Field. On July 1st, he drove-in the game-winning run with a sixth-inning single en route to a 3-0 win over the Houston Astros. With his clutch performance, Rizzo became the first Cubs player to collect three game-winning RBI in his first five games with the team. Acquired by Chicago from San Diego along with Minor League pitcher Zach Cates for right-handed pitcher Andrew Cashner in January, Rizzo was originally selected in the sixth round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft by the Boston Red Sox. Since his promotion to the Majors, he leads all N.L. rookies in hitting, home runs and slugging percentage. This is his first monthly award.
Sunday, July 22
PEORIA, Ariz. - They are 16 of the best 17u baseball teams in the country, and represent every region in the nation. And after the tournament's 60th game is played Saturday morning at the Peoria Sports Complex, one of the 16 will be able say emphatically that it is, indeed, the best of the best.
The first 17u Perfect Game World Series will kick off with eight games Tuesday (July 24) night at the Peoria Sports Complex and continues with 16 games a day through Friday. The semifinals and championship games will be played Saturday morning, with all the action at the spring training home of the Seattle Mariners and San Diego Padres.
The teams involved in this prestigious event are the ABD Bulldogs, based in San Bernardino, Calif.; Arizona Elite (Phoenix); Baseball U (West Branch, N.J.; the Dallas Patriots (Richardson, Texas); the East Cobb Braves (Marietta, Ga.), The EvoShield Canes (Fredericksburg, Va.); the Houston Banditos (Houston, Texas) and the Indiana Prospects (Indianapolis).
Also, Marucci Elite (Baton Rouge, La.); Mountain West '13 (South Jordan, Utah); NorCal Baseball (Manteca, Calif.); San Diego Show (San Diego); SGV Arsenal (West Covina, Calif.); the South Florida Elite Squad (Miami); Team Northwest (Puyallup, Wash.) and the Tri-State Arsenal (Vorhees, N.J.).
The 16 teams have been divided into two eight-team pools and each will play seven pool games between Tuesday and Friday. The top-two teams from each pool will advance to Saturday's semifinals.
For this year's inaugural event, Perfect Game tournament directors and scouts selected the 16 teams based on their performance at PG national tournaments in the past and the expectations for each in 2012. Beginning in 2013, teams will be given the opportunity to qualify for the PG World Series through a series of qualifying tournaments that will be held throughout the country. MORE
Saturday, July 21
In a country not known for its baseball, Duran became interested in the sport at a young age despite Ecuador's overwhelming passion for soccer. Duran started competing in his hometown, Guayaquil, Ecuador, and as a teenager began playing the United States.
"Baseball is not big over there at all," said Duran of baseball in his native country. "A lot of friends got involved [with baseball] and I started being successful in it. My parents supported me all the time. I came here to compete and I finally got to go to college."
Duran was recruited to come play in America by a coach that had seen him play in Ecuador at age 12. The following year, Duran flew to California to play for the ABD Bulldogs, a competitive travel team program, where one of his teammates was current Princeton shortstop Brandon Martin.
During his time in America from the ages of 13-18, Duran learned how to play the game and morphed into a monster hitter, eventually gaining the opportunity to play at Riverside Community College.
After two seasons at RCC, Duran unsuccessfully tried to walk on at Louisiana State University. His subsequent attempt to apply to California State institutions was a disgruntling process for Duran who just wanted a chance to play at a competitive collegiate level.
"I did not have enough academic units," said Duran about his transition from RCC. "I really needed to do something. Everybody responded to me, but Cal-State L.A. really took the time with me. I filled out the paperwork so I could play and I took the units I needed and I was eligible to play Div. II baseball."
His first of two seasons with the Golden Eagles began with a bang. In the seventeen games of 2011, Duran was hitting .403 with two home runs and 14 RBI. He hit safely in 15 of 17 games and was already developing as one of the best hitters in all of Division II.
But on March 5, 2011 in a conference game against Cal State East Bay, Duran had a season-ending injury that was coupled with a tragedy back home.
"The seventeenth game, I got hurt and had to get ACL surgery," said Duran. "My mom passed away and I really had everything against me. I had one [college] year left, this year, and I said I have to leave everything on the table and just let it all go."
After rebounding from both emotional and physical turmoil, Duran rebounded with an intense focus and drive that can only be called inspirational.
Duran was fourth in all of Division II this spring with a whopping .451 batting average in 48 games, all of which he started. He had 79 hits in just 175 at-bats with a team leading 9HR/44RBI. His on-base percentage finished at a magnificent .533, placing him in the top ten nationally in several major hitting categories. MORE
Friday, July 20
Rizzo, acquired from the Padres in January for Andrew Cashner, was the most productive hitter in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League until joining the Cubs on June 26. He batted .342/.405/.696 for Iowa and just continued to hit in Chicago, batting .338/.357/.574 with four home runs in his first 17 games as Dale Sveum's new first baseman.
"I'm here to stay," Rizzo said.
Rizzo probably thought the same thing when he arrived in San Diego last season. He had been tearing up the PCL with Tucson but hit .141 with one homer in 128 at-bats for the Padres. New Padres GM Josh Byrnes concluded that he wasn't built for Petco Park. He added Yonder Alonso from the Reds and let Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer know that Rizzo was available.
"I was the savior last year too, and that's why I think it's easier this year to come up," Rizzo said. "Hopefully this is just a building block of what is to come here. That's all I can say about that. I think there are a lot of good things to come and hopefully we can look back and this is one of the first steps."
Cubs vice president Jason McLeod has said Rizzo has the best makeup of any player he's ever scouted. He has the ability to hit for average and power while delivering plus defense at first base.
"You don't want to put everything on somebody's shoulders, but I don't believe in coincidences either," Sveum said. "There are times when certain people change the dynamics of a lineup and a team. You can already tell defensively what he's saved, offensively what he's done. There's nothing like having a two-way player."
Hoyer, who had worked with Epstein in Boston, was the Padres' GM when they acquired Rizzo from the Red Sox and took the blame for Rizzo's performance last year, saying he promoted him too soon hoping to create some buzz in San Diego. "We really liked the adjustments he made in spring training this year," Hoyer said. "He lowered his hands, shortened up his swing a little bit. We liked him as a prospect obviously last year, but this go-around in Triple-A, at 22, was more impressive, because of the ballpark and because of some of the adjustments he made."
• Will Josh Vitters be the next prospect to get a look in Wrigley Field? The Triple-A Iowa third baseman is taking more walks. He set a career high on July 5, raising his total to 23. He was hitting .297/.349/.494 and had 13 home runs.
A's Select Daniel Robertson in First of the Compensation Round of 2012 First-Year Player Draft
|RD||PLAYER||POS||MLB TEAM||HIGH SCHOOL||COLLEGE|
|1A||Daniel Robertson||SS||Oakland A's||Upland '12||LOI UCLA||SIGNED|
|2||Tanner Rahier||SS||Cincinnati Reds||Palm Desert '12||LOI San Diego||SIGNED|
|2||Joe Muñoz||SS||Arizona Diamondbacks||Los Altos '12||LOI San Diego State||SIGNED|
|3||Kieran Lovegrove||RHP||Cleveland Indians||Mission Viejo '12||LOI Arizona State||SIGNED|
|9||DJ Crumlich||SS||Pittsburgh Pirates||Irvine '08||UC Irvine||SIGNED|
|10||Ron Miller||3B||Miami Marlins||Serra '12||LOI UNLV||SIGNED|
|13||Bijan Rademacher||OF||Chicago Cubs||Canyon '10||Orange Coast College||SIGNED|
|17||Stefan Sabol||C||New York Mets||Aliso Niguel '10||Orange Coast College||SIGNED|
|19||Michael Peterson||RHP||Pittsburgh Pirates||St Francis '12|
|20||Matthew Sisto||RHP||Philadelphia Phillies||Cypress '08||University of Hawaii||SIGNED|
|24||Daniel Duran||3B||Tampa Bay Rays||Brookdale '07||Cal State LA||SIGNED|
|26||Justin Garza||RHP||Cleveland Indians||Bonita '12||LOI Cal State Fullerton|
|27||Zac Fisher||C||Chicago White Sox||AB Miller '09||New Mexico State||SIGNED|
|27||Cody Poteet||RHP||Washington Nationals||Christian '12||LOI UCLA|
|31||Andrew Potter||RHP||Arizona Diamondbacks||Eastside '12||LOI UC Irvine||SIGNED|
|33||Ryan Garvey||RF||Colorado Rockies||Palm Desert '11||Riverside City College||SIGNED|
|34||Mark Trentacosta||LHP||St Louis Cardinals||Marina '08||UC Irvine|
|40||David Olmedo-Barrera||SS||Oakland A's||St Francis '12||LOI Cal State Fullerton|
|FA||Brandon Garcia||OF||Texas Rangers||Bishop Gorman '08||USC||SIGNED|
|FA||Nik Stephenson||RHP||Kansas City Royals||Sunset '12||LOI Hawaii||SIGNED|
INDIAN WELLS — Tanner Rahier was drafted Tuesday by Cincinnati Reds in the second round of the Major League Baseball first-year player draft.
Draft experts had projected that the Palm Desert High School senior would be selected late in Monday's first round, which was composed of 31 picks. But his name wasn't called then or in the supplemental first round, which was made up of 29 picks awarded to teams as compensation for losing high-profile free agents. Instead, he was the No. 78 pick in the draft, going to Cincinnati in Round 2.
Rahier was the best player available at the outset of the second round in Baseball America's prospect rankings at No. 35. He was the first player mentioned by MLB Network analysts listing top picks for Tuesday just before the draft resumed at 9:00 AM. MORE
PHOENIX – With their first selection on day two of the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, the D-backs drafted shortstop Jose Munoz in the second round (pick No. 90 overall) from Los Altos High School in Northern California.
The San Diego State commit was tabbed as the 86th best prospect by ESPN.com. At 6-foot-3 and 185 pounds, Munoz hit .419 this season with a slugging percentage of .814. “He’s an infielder with some offensive potential,” Baseball America’s Jim Callis said on MLB.com. “He has all average to solid tools.” MORE
Tuesday, January 31
January 31, 2012, 7:00 p.m.
There has been a longtime assumption, if not an unwritten commandment, in the world of high school sports: Thou shall play for your high school team if you want to be spotted by a college recruiter and offered a scholarship.
Don't tell that to Palm Desert High senior Tanner Rahier. He is a shortstop bound for the University of San Diego who hasn't played high school baseball since his freshman year.
"If you have the talent, they'll find you," Rahier said.
Rahier is an example of the changing landscape in college recruiting. He gave up high school baseball to play in a San Bernardino-based spring league run by an academy. And he played for a travel team that went to Jupiter, Fla., in the summer of 2010, which is when a San Diego recruiter saw him.
With few exceptions, playing high school sports is no longer considered a vital pathway toward obtaining a college sports scholarship. College recruiters are relying more on club competitions, combines, camps and showcases to identify the majority of their recruited athletes.
Changes in NCAA recruiting rules, combined with the idea that the best and most efficient way to evaluate players is when they compete in all-star events, has made high school sports competition almost irrelevant for college recruiters in certain sports.
Golfers are scouted and recruited off their play in American Junior Golf Assn. tournaments. In tennis, the major events for boys and girls are in August when the USTA junior championships are held.
Kelly Inouye Perez, the softball coach for 11-time NCAA champion UCLA, said she "can't remember" the last time she attended a high school softball practice to evaluate a prospect. "It's all about travel ball and watching summer training," she said.
John Speraw, men's volleyball coach at UC Irvine, said he occasionally attends high school matches but added, "Most of the identification comes through the club program. We get to see them playing against the best, and we evaluate their potential."
Denise Corlett, assistant coach for the women's volleyball team at Stanford, said, "Once or twice a year, we'll go to a high school match of a kid we're trying to recruit. You see them enough during the club season."
Since 2009, top boys' soccer players in Southern California have been abandoning high school programs after a developmental academy league was formed by U.S. Soccer. Club programs have pressured their players to make a choice — high school or club. Four-time City Section champion Woodland Hills El Camino Real has lost at least 10 players to club teams, Coach David Hussey said. MORE
Tuesday, February 14
BY JIM ALEXANDER - The Press Enterprise
RIVERSIDE — The teenager hears the advice from his father, and … well, you know how most teenagers are. What could HE possibly know about this?
Friday, March 9
NATHAN RODE - Baseball America
To anyone posted behind home plate, Mission Viejo (Calif.) High's Kieran Lovegrove looks like a typical high school righthander destined to pitch on a bigger stage. His background shows that he is anything but typical. Lovegrove is a late bloomer who hasn't been prominent on the showcase circuit. Not to mention there aren't many high school prospects who are natives of South Africa and co-founders of a charitable foundation.
Lovegrove's father is from South Africa and met his wife in the United States in the 1980s. The couple moved back to South Africa and had two kids, Kieran and Kayla. Kieran, about three years younger than his sister, was born in Johannesburg, and the family moved to Cape Town when he was about a year old. Crime in the country was on the rise in the late 1990s so Keith Lovegrove put his wife, Kelly, and kids on a plane and they moved to Los Angeles in 1999. The family stayed with Kelly's parents before getting settled in Southern California.
"I know my dad wanted a better life for me and my sister," Kieran Lovegrove said. "It's tough not knowing where you came from because I was so young. I remember the views from the apartment and the beaches. Little things like that. It's a good reminder how beautiful it is."
Lovegrove hasn't been back since the move, but he is proud of his heritage and hopes to represent his country on the field by playing in the World Baseball Classic and being the first South African-born major leaguer. That didn't seem like a possibility a couple of years ago, but thanks to physical maturation and hard work, Lovegrove is now a legitimate pro prospect.
Mission Viejo head coach Chris Ashbach has known Lovegrove since he entered high school. He says Lovegrove was an above-average freshman, a good hitter with a nice arm. He spent his first two years of high school on the junior varsity squad. As a sophomore, he was sitting in the low 80s with his fastball. That summer, everything took a step forward.
"His progression took place after his sophomore year," Ashbach said. "He went from 82-83 (mph) to 88-90 in a matter of a few months."
Lovegrove attributed the jump in velocity to his body growing. He now stands at a chiseled 6-feet-4, 185 pounds, and delivers a lively fastball that can sit in the low 90s while complementing it with a sharp slider that is a swing-and-miss pitch when at its best. But for all of his physical development, it was a wake-up call before the start of his senior year that changed everything.
Lovegrove had drawn attention on his travel team thanks to his frame and arm strength, but he was disappointed after making just four starts in 10 appearances as a junior and going 1-4, 5.49. That summer he participated in the Area Code Games and "got knocked around a little bit," he said.
"That's when I told myself I'm not working hard enough," he said. "I didn't like the way it turned out and I'm not going to let that happen again.
"I'm lucky enough to be blessed with a strong arm and a fastball with movement. It took me a while to figure out I can't throw 110 (mph) and get a strikeout on the first pitch."
So Lovegrove got serious with his workout routine. He started working with a personal trainer and gets into the gym a few times a week, lifting properly and focusing on exercises specific to baseball. He now long-tosses on a regular basis, and he's able to easily sit in the low 90s. He touched 94 at the Southern California Invitational in February and may have more in the tank.
Lovegrove's first goal for the season was to help the younger players for Mission Viejo get acclimated to the routines and demands of the varsity program. But after seeing how quickly the group came together, he wants to lead them back to the playoffs as the Diablos seek a second consecutive Southern Section championship.
He also wants everyone to see the progress he has made. "I want to show the difference from last year and the work I've put in," Lovegrove said. "I want to put up the numbers I'm capable of and put myself into that upper echelon of players."
PUTTING OTHERS FIRST
As an Arizona State signee and a draft prospect, Lovegrove seems to have a bright future, but he shines off the field as well. "He's extremely competitive, but a wonderful, emotional, caring young man," Ashbach said. "He wants to please people. He's one of the most caring kids I've had. He's so conscious of other people."
With the help of two friends and teammates—Adam Salcido and Kyle Candalla—Lovegrove started the Going To Bat Foundation. The young men saw a video of players in South Africa who had very little in the way of equipment and were practicing in poor conditions, yet still were winning games. So they set forth with this mission: To improve the lives of youth by providing any child who wishes to play baseball or softball with the means and the opportunity, providing a viable alternative to other destructive options.
"In a place like Orange County, kids get new stuff every year," Lovegrove said. "We did a shipment to South Africa. We did some work in Alaska and locally, too. It's really started to grow over the past year." Their Website, goingtobat.org, makes it easy for anyone to help. There is a page dedicated to collecting monetary donations while another lists urgent needs, wish lists for specific schools and communities, as well as suggestions of what equipment to purchase. The group collects the donations and then provides the equipment to those in need.
With Lovegrove attending various baseball events around the country, the foundation has received a lot of attention. Lovegrove is fully aware of his good fortune and wants to do everything he can to afford others the chance to chase their own dreams.
"I look at kids with single parents with two jobs and they're struggling," he said. "It affects me inside. That kid wants to be a star player and they just don't have the opportunity. Anything you can do would really change their lives."
Lovegrove attributes his character to his parents being supportive of all his endeavors and raising him with strong morals. He has been told that he'll get the chance to represent South Africa in the World Baseball Classic qualifying tournament this fall, and he has at least one more goal in mind.
Monday, March 19
The freshman left-hander from Bakersfield, Calif., picked up the victory in each of his two starts. Watson allowed one run and seven hits through six innings in a 7-2 win against USC at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday. He limited Arizona State to two runs and four hits in six-plus innings during UCLA's 4-2 win early Sunday evening.
In addition, Watson threw one scoreless inning in relief against Arizona State on Friday night. He recorded three consecutive outs in the eighth and ninth innings in a game that was tied, 5-5, before UCLA won the contest, 6-5, with a walk-off home run by Kevin Williams in the ninth inning.
Watson finished the week with three pitching appearances, having allowed three runs and 11 hits in 13.0 innings. He has become the first UCLA pitcher to notch two victories in one week since Trevor Bauer accomplished the feat as a freshman in 2009.
This marks the first Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week honor for Watson, who has gone 5-0 with a 3.86 ERA in 32.2 innings for UCLA this season. MORE
6 FORMER ABD PLAYERS TO BE NAMED TO INAUGURAL ABD HALL OF FAME AT THE 20 YEAR ANNIVERSARY BANQUET
Michael J. Gilmore, age 53, was born in New Orleans, LA and lived in Newport Beach, CA, where he suffered a sudden and fatal heart attack. He was a truly great baseball umpire.
He is survived by his daughter, Andrea, Huntington Beach, CA, and his parents, Otis and Rose Gilmore, Diamondhead, MS and his brother Otis III, Newport Beach, CA.
"Gilly" as he was known by his fellow umpires was very popular where he grew to know all of the players in ABD and talked of them often during games. He developed relationships with several of them as it carried into college where he followed them and was always talking of how they were doing.
Michael did all the assigning of the umpires for the Spring League and tournaments for the ABCL. He traveled internationally with Mike Spiers who was coordinating teams in the Pan Am Championships. He was truly a professional umpire an will be missed by all of us.
Wednesday, November 30
Chatwood, who turns 22 on Dec. 16, went 6-11 with a 4.75 ERA in 27 games, including 25 starts, for the Angels as a rookie last season. A second-round Draft pick of the Angels in 2008 out of Redlands (Calif.) East Valley High School, Chatwood becomes the third highly touted young pitcher the Rockies have acquired since last July.
The Rockies received left-hander Drew Pomeranz, who turned 23 on Nov. 22, and right-hander Alex White, 23, from the Indians for former staff ace Ubaldo Jimenez in July just before the non-waiver Trade Deadline.
With Iannetta gone, the Rockies are expected to pursue a veteran catcher to solidify the young pitching staff this season and work in tandem with prospect Wilin Rosario, who showed promise during a September callup. The club is close to signing veteran backstop Ramon Hernandez to a two-year deal, according to Major League sources. Hernandez spent the past three seasons with the Reds.
Hernandez, who turns 36 on May 20, hit .282 with 12 home runs and 36 RBIs last season in 91 games. A 2003 All-Star Game participant with the Athletics, Hernandez is a .266 hitter with 161 homers and 723 RBIs in 13 seasons with the Athletics, Padres, Orioles and Reds.
Chatwood is often compared to veteran standout pitcher Roy Oswalt because he is an undersized (listed at 6-foot) righty with a strong arm. He entered last season ranked by MLB.com as the No. 5 prospect in the Angels' system. Early-season injuries to Joel Piniero and Scott Kazmir forced the club to call him up in early April after just 6 2/3 Triple-A innings.
Chatwood had typical big league growing pains last season, when he finished with 74 strikeouts to 71 walks and gave up 14 home runs. He endured two demotions to Triple-A Salt Lake. But Chatwood possesses a fastball that can reach 96 mph and curveball, and he is developing a cut fastball and a changeup. He could make a major forward step if he improves his command.
Wednesday, November 2
On February 20th, the second day of his college baseball career Cory's life dramatically changed. In the first inning of the second game of the day, he went to steal second base. Sliding head-first, colliding with the second baseman. Cory suffered a C-5 fracture of his spinal cord, ultimately leaving him paralyzed from the chest down.
Cory Currently spends his time doing outpatient rehab and is taking one dat at a time. his father Dale has retired from his job to be his son's full-time caregiver allowing him to make sure Cory can get to any and all physical therapies and treatments.
A Scout Game between the New York Yankees Scout Team and Milwaukee Brewers Scout Team will play on Saturday, November 19th at the Urban Youth Academy in Compton California where all proceeds will go to the Hahn family.
Handout: CORY HAHN FOUNDATION GAME
Tuesday, October 4
Kohler, a junior lefthander at Los Osos High in Rancho Cucamonga, has been overpowering for the Red Sox Scout Team this fall. A week after he struck out 13 batters in five innings in a start, Kohler fanned eight in three innings of work against an overmatched Cardinals Blue team on Saturday. His out pitch was a sharp 71-73 mph curveball that he can throw for strikes or use as a chase pitch.
"My curveball was working good. It's usually my strongest pitch," Kohler said. "Usually I start batters off with that pitch, then go to the fastball, then maybe finish with the curve again. I brought the fastball up a little high, but felt good overall. I tried to elevate it on some, because they were chasing it."
Kohler has an easy delivery and plenty of projection in his 6-foot-2, 170-pound frame. He sat around 85-86 mph on Saturday and topped out at 87, but he figures to add significant velocity as he continues to get used to pitching and keeps maturing physically.
Several other underclassmen on the Red Sox team shined Saturday. Switch-hitting middle infielder Elliott Barzilli, another junior, showed smooth actions, good instincts and a strong arm at shortstop, while also hitting hard line drives to right field and left. He has a chance to be one of the top infield prospects in Southern California for the 2013 draft.
Outfielder Corey Dempster, a USC commit like Kohler, showed good bat speed and a solid approach, hitting a three-run, opposite-field homer to right. The ball carried well to that part of Memorial Field in Upland, and sophomore Luke Dykstra also took advantage, hitting a two-run opposite-field shot earlier in the game. Dykstra, the son of former big league all-star Lenny and the younger brother of 2008 second-round pick Cutter, is strong and athletic, and his swing and approach are making great strides. He credited his work with Cutter with helping his offensive game progress.
"(We) go to the batting cages all the time. He's one of the reasons I got so much better this offseason," Dykstra said. "I've tried to get stronger, and I'm seeing the ball way better in the fall. I was sitting on fastball (on the home run), and I just drove it the other way. I've been trying to do that the whole offseason. I changed my swing up, changed my stance. I feel more comfortable at the plate." MORE
Tuesday, August 30
Nearly every major national amateur baseball organization in America is united as a USA Baseball National Member Organization. As a result, USA Baseball governs more than 12 million amateur players in ballparks and playgrounds across the country.
As the commissioner's office for amateur baseball, USA Baseball is a resource center for its various membership groups, fans and players. USA Baseball is also responsible for promoting and developing the game of baseball on the grassroots level, both nationally and internationally.
The USA Baseball membership program draws on all of the organizations' resources to afford players, coaches, parents and fans the most comprehensive baseball experience to date. The program will allow USA Baseball to further engage players of all ages in an effort to provide them with the resources to maximize their understanding of the game. USA Baseball along with the support of Major League Baseball, its National Member Organizations and sponsors is proud to offer players of all ages the opportunity to be part of Team USA.
The membership initiative will aim to provide a centralized source of baseball information, including material related to NCAA compliance, anti-doping and drug awareness, current medical safety reports, rules interpretation and coaches education. The program will also include National Team identification opportunities, travel information, player training tools, USA Baseball specialty merchandise offers, character development and more that will improve the players' overall baseball experience. The individual registration fee is $25 for all players, coaches, officials and fans. Rules interpretation, little known facts, basic laws of the game and upholding sportsmanship.