This spring, Major League Baseball and USA Baseball have created their third event dedicated to providing girls opportunities to play baseball, called MLB Grit. The new high school baseball invitational that will be held at Globe Life Park, the home of the Texas Rangers, in Arlington, Texas, as well as the Rangers MLB Youth Academy in Dallas, from March 7-10.
There will be approximately 65 high school-aged female athletes who will participate, from the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico, in addition to several players from the 2018 Women’s Baseball World Cup.
It joins the returning Trailblazer Series and Girls Baseball Breakthrough Series, but it will be a bit different for its participants. It will provide individualized, professional instruction, plus competitive play and a tournament-style showcase.
“It’s more of a tournament format, with a greater focus on competitive aspects, as well as seeing how these girls perform under pressure” said Kim Ng, MLB Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations.
“We’re happy to give an opportunity to these young women who have taken interest in playing baseball, but may not have had the opportunities to do it,” Ng noted. “We are extremely proud.”
MLB and USA Baseball are reviewing the applications that were submitted by January, and its picks have begun be announced. With its three separate regions, Ng is looking forward to a mixture of talent.
“Having that type of diversity is intriguing on our end,” she said.
Like other MLB amateur development events, the athletes will be exposed to developmental training, games and daily presentations, including a talk regarding careers in baseball. Staffers include USA Baseball members plus former and current National Team players. Speakers will represent MLB front offices and women in various positions within and outside of the world of professional baseball.
MLB Grit participant Ximena Zamarron, a 15-year-old Dallas native, will be representing the Rangers Academy. She has also represented the Academy at the Jennie Finch Classic as part of the 2018 All-Star Game festivities. She was also a part of the Academy’s RBI All-Star team in the RBI Southwest Regional.
The second event, the Trailblazer Series, is returning to the greater Los Angeles area, at Compton Youth Academy, in Compton, Calif., from April 11-14. It is in connection with Jackie Robinson Day, which is celebrated throughout MLB on April 15. It will feature competitive play, world-class instruction and unique educational opportunities for baseball players from around the country, ages 11-13
- The third event, Breakthrough Series Girls Baseball, is part of the larger network of diversity-focused, amateur development camps operated largely by MLB, USA Baseball and USA Softball. Taking place from June 14-June 18, in Historic Dodgertown in Vero Beach, Fla., the event serves as an opportunity for on-field development as well as a scouting showcase for dozens of girls, ages 17 and under, from around the U.S. for the Women’s National Team trials operated by USA Baseball.
In 2018, baseball and softball-development initiatives led by MLB reached more than one million kids in the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada, Mexico and Panama.
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