Juniors to face top unsigned Dominican prospects
Thursday, May 10, 2012
OTTAWA-The Junior National Team will be facing some of the Dominican Republic’s top unsigned amateur talent on May 31st in Santo Domingo as part of the club’s annual Dominican Summer League trip.
Major League Baseball created the league in March as a means to showcase top amateur talent to MLB scouts and personnel ahead of the July 2nd international signing date. Eligible players outside of the Rule 4 Draft countries (Canada, USA, and Puerto Rico) are permitted to sign with a MLB team on or after July 2nd.
The league also features and educational component and instructional clinics that are administered by MLB.
The game on May 31st, set for 7pm ET at Estadio Quisqueya, will see the juniors play the second game of a day-night double header.
“The double header is part of MLB’s continued commitment to providing a venue where Clubs can maximize their evaluation process of unsigned prospects in the Dominican Republic of both currently eligible prospects as well as those who are not yet eligible to sign,” said Joel Araujo of MLB International Baseball Operations.
Although rosters have not yet been released, it is expected that some of the top talent eligible to sign on July 2nd will play on May 31st.
MLB.com recently released a list of the top 20 unsigned players in the Dominican Republic and Venezuela which can be found here.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for our team to play against some of the best talent in the Dominican Republic,” said Junior National Team Head Coach Greg Hamilton. “Playing under the lights in Santo Domingo in a competitive environment will be extremely valuable to our team as we prepare for the World Championships in September.”
The JNT will be travelling to the Dominican Republic on May 22nd for a twelve game exhibition schedule against MLB Academy teams in the Dominican Summer League. Games will be played at MLB Academy complexes throughout the country.
In addition to preparing for the IBAF 18U World Championship in September, the trip to the Dominican Republic will also be one of the final opportunities for draft eligible players on the JNT to showcase their talents in front of MLB scouts before the June 4th-6th MLB First Year Player Draft.
Final preparations for the IBAF 18U World Championship will begin on August 17th when the JNT travels to Trieste, Italy for an exhibition series. At the conclusion of the series the final 20-player roster will head to Seoul, South Korea where Canada will open the event against Panama on August 30th.
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