Press Release
Inaugural squad opens play January 20th at the Pan Am "A" Qualifying Tournament in Guatemala

January 16, 2007

Durham, NC – USA Baseball announced today 18 players, 4 coaches and support staff for the 2007 USA Baseball 14-U National Team (14-under). The team will represent the United States at the North/Central American Regional Qualifying Tournament for the COPABE Pan Am "A" Championships.

The qualifying tournament will be played January 20-27 in Guatemala City, Guatemala. The teams expected to participate in the event include Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua and Panama. The top four teams from the tournament will advance to the Pan Am "A" Championships to be held in November in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The 18 players were selected exclusively from four USA Baseball Champions Program sectional tournaments which took place in October and November 2006. "We were pleased with the response we received from teams when we announced the tournaments in 2006 and we were even more pleased with the quality of the players we saw on the field last year," said Rick Riccobono, Director, USA Baseball 14-U National Team. "We are very excited to bring these athletes together again as they prepare to step on the field in the USA Baseball uniform for the first time."

2007 marks the first time USA Baseball has selected and trained a National Team at the 14-under age-level. Over the past 10 years the USA Baseball Youth National Team (16-under) has become one of the foremost international baseball powers and the 14-U program will be looking to continue that tradition.

"We were looking for the right opportunity to put a USA Baseball National Team onto the field at this age-level," said Paul V. Seiler, USA Baseball Executive Director. "We believe we have found the right model for the identification of athletes at this age-level and equally as important we have the right staff to lead this year's team into international competition."

The coaching staff will be lead by Tom Succow (Glendale, Arizona) who has served on two USA Baseball Youth National Team coaching staffs including a tour as the head coach in 2004. Succow has been the head baseball coach at Brophy College Preparatory (Phoenix, Arizona) for the past 29 years. Joining Succow will be Tim O'Brien (Columbia, Maryland), George Sanchez (Gilbert, Arizona) and David Webb (Gilbert, Arizona).

Ten of the players on this year's team come from California, four hail from Arizona, three from Washington and one comes from Utah.

USA Baseball is the National Governing Body of amateur baseball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. The organization selects and trains the USA Baseball National Team, the USA Baseball Junior National Team (18-under), the USA Baseball Youth National Team (16-under), and the USA Baseball 14-U National Team (14-under) and the USA Baseball Women’s National Team which participate in various international competitions each year.