Major League Baseball and USA Baseball today announced a new high school baseball tournament to showcase some of the best rising seniors from Texas and California, two states that historically produce a high volume of collegiate and professional players. "States Play," which will be co-hosted by the Texas Rangers, will
Major League Baseball and USA Baseball today announced a new high school baseball tournament to showcase some of the best rising seniors from Texas and California, two states that historically produce a high volume of collegiate and professional players. "States Play," which will be co-hosted by the Texas Rangers, will center on a three-game series at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas, from Friday, August 24th through Sunday, August 26th. All three games of the inter-state rivalry tournament will stream LIVE on MLB.com, and access to Globe Life will be free for the public. MLB Network's Daron Sutton will call play-by-play while former MLB All-Star pitcher Tom "Flash" Gordon will provide analysis. MLB.com's Dani Wexelman will provide on-air reporting.
The schedule of games is as follows (all times Central):
Friday, August 24th: 5:00 p.m.
Saturday, August 25th: 7:00 p.m.
Sunday, August 26th: 11:00 a.m.
Each team will consist of rosters of players living in various parts of each state. The vast majority of the high school players have already committed to some of the best collegiate baseball programs in the country. Players were selected by MLB and USA Baseball, with several being chosen after participation in other joint MLB/USA Baseball development-focused events, such as the Tournament of the Stars, Breakthrough Series, Elite Development Invitational, the DREAM Series, and the Prospect Development Pipeline. States Play rosters can be found in the separate attachment. All names are subject to change.
Former Major League players with personal or professional histories in Texas or California will serve as coaches for each team. These coaches include Jerry Manuel, Homer Bush, Royce Clayton, Ken Hill, Gerald Laird, Darren Oliver and Andy Stankiewicz. Additionally, players will participate in morning training sessions at the Texas Rangers MLB Youth Academy located in West Dallas. Workouts will be held on Friday (August 24th) and Saturday (August 25th) from 9:00 a.m. to Noon (CT) at the Academy.
Additionally, the participants will have the opportunity to undergo unique Prospect Development Pipeline (PDP) assessments, consisting ofperformance vision screening, swing analysis and precise physical testing. These voluntary assessments are supported on-site by USA Baseball, which have helped establish an official identification and player assessment pathway to all 30 MLB Clubs for elite high school age baseball players in advance of the annual MLB Draft. These assessments include the following: Athletic Assessment, Sport Vision Screening, Swing Analysis and Ball Flight Analysis. Resulting data from the assessments will be compiled into an individualized report for each player, and will be used as a tool in the development and optimization of each individual player.
"We believe that States Play will be a fun display of the natural rivalry between these two baseball powerhouse states," said Tony Reagins, Executive Vice President of Baseball & Softball Development, Major League Baseball. "Ballplayers from Texas and California have a lot of hometown pride, and we are looking forward to seeing that emotion play out in Globe Life Park. Many of these players are already committed to outstanding collegiate programs, but we think that the instruction and time they spend with the former Major Leaguers serving as coaches will prove to be invaluable to their future development and success."
"We are excited to launch the States Play program with representation from two of our nation's most talent-rich baseball states," said Rick Riccobono, USA Baseball's Chief Development Officer. "The creation of this event signifies our continued commitment to increasing our engagement in amateur programming. Together with MLB, we have never had more touchpoints to aspiring athletes within our game."
"The Texas Rangers are honored to host the first ever States Play Tournament at Globe Life Park in Arlington," said Rangers President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Jon Daniels. "Texas and California traditionally produce some of the best high school players in the country, and it will be a great opportunity for our fans to watch some very competitive baseball. It will also give these young players the chance to experience playing in a Major League ballpark."