July 3, 2004
Joplin, Mo.--USA Baseball has announced its 2004 Junior National Team official roster in the 18-and-under age category for international competition. The 18 players were selected exclusively from the age-eligible players (those born 1986 or after) who participated in the Ninth Annual Tournament of Stars and the USA Baseball Junior National Team Trials.
Among those selected was Lee County rising senior Buster Posey. Posey, a shortstop and pitcher, had a tremendous showing at the trials. This is the second major honor for Posey this summer. Earlier this year he was selected to play in the AFLAC All-American game in Aberdeen, Maryland in early August.
For the fifth straight year, the Trials were conducted in Joplin. California leads the way with nine JNT members hailing from the state. Florida is next with three players on the roster. Virginia is represented by two players. Arizona, Georgia (Posey), Indiana and Texas round out the list of states with one member each.
“First of all, we think we have a versatile group with several multi-position players,” 2004 USA Baseball Junior National Team Head Coach Marc Johnson said. “Second, we have speed with this group. I think our pitching will be competitive. We should be a hybrid team as far as speed and power are concerned.
We think we are going to be able to go to Taiwan and compete for a medal. I like the make up of this team with the heart these players have shown during the Trials and those immeasurable qualities that can really make a difference,” added Johnson, head coach at Cherry Creek High School in Englewood, Colo.
Following selection of the final roster, Junior National Team members will return to their respective hometowns July 4. The squad will then reassemble in Los Angeles on Aug. 27 before departing the following day for Taiwan.
The Junior National Team will take part in a series of exhibition games from Aug. 30-Sept. 1 before competing in the International BAseball Federation’s “AAA” World Junior Championships, Sept. 3-12, in Taipei City, Taiwan.
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