The Premier Baseball Social Network for Players, Coaches, Scouts, and Umpires
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- Seeing a need to serve elite-level high school amateur baseball players, USA Baseball and Major League Baseball announced on Wednesday the creation of the Prospect Development Pipeline (PDP), an official means for high school-age (16-18) amateur baseball players in the United States to be seen by all 30 MLB clubs.
Set to begin with five pre-high school season events around the country in January, then a dozen more post-high school season events at various sites in late May and June, the PDP Premier Events will be single-day regional workouts.
The PDP schedule will conclude in September with the Advanced Scout Team Tournament, a 16-team championship to be held at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, N.C. The full schedule is as follows:
Pre-High School Season Events:
January 14, 2017: PDP Premier -- Atlanta
January 21, 2017: PDP Premier -- Houston
January 28, 2017: PDP Premier -- Bradenton, Fla.
February 4, 2017: PDP Premier -- Southern California
February 5, 2017: PDP Premier -- Phoenix
Post-High School Season Events:
May 30, 2017 - June 25, 2017: PDP Premier Events -- Various Sites
Advanced Scout Team Tournament:
September 20-24, 2017: PDP National Scout Team Championship -- Cary, N.C.
"Major League Baseball strives to be a steward to the amateur game, and the launch of the PDP marks a promising new chapter of this longstanding commitment," Chris Marinak, Senior Vice President of League Economics and Strategy, Major League Baseball, said. "The PDP program will offer direct opportunities for the next generation of players to receive the most comprehensive exposure to MLB Clubs possible."
The goal of the program is to give amateur players direct exposure to representatives from all 30 teams and every participant will get player manuals with educational information and resources as well as a post-event evaluation. All events will be invite-only and free of charge to players who participate.
Starting with the regional professional-level workouts, all evaluations will be filed by the MLB Scouting Bureau and sent to all 30 clubs as an additional resource, beyond the reports written by team scouts attending the events. MLB teams, via their scouts, will also help identify players for local events, enter teams into the Advanced Scout Team Tournament, provide access to Major League and Minor League facilities to host events, allow amateur scouts to serve as on-field coaches at PDP events and participate in a steering committee made up of general managers, assistant GMs, special assistants, scouting directors, MLB staff and USA Baseball personnel. That group includes:
• Dayton Moore, Sr. VP Baseball Operations and General Manager, Kansas City Royals
• Neal Huntington, Executive VP and General Manager, Pittsburgh Pirates
• Tom McNamara, Assistant General Manager, Seattle Mariners
• Sig Mejdal, Special Assistant to the GM, Houston Astros
• Brad Grant, Director Amateur Scouting, Cleveland Indians
• Billy Gasparino, Director Amateur Scouting, Los Angeles Dodgers
• Randy Flores, Director Scouting, St. Louis Cardinals
• Bill Bavasi, Sr. Director, MLB Scouting Bureau
• Tony Reagins, Sr. Vice President Youth Programs, Major League Baseball
• Sean Campbell, Sr. Director Sport Development, USA Baseball
"It's a very exciting opportunity, especially to work with a very talented and passionate group of people with USA Baseball, Major League Baseball and the entire steering committee," Moore said. "Together, we are focused on growing the greatest game in the world and providing opportunities for our youth."
"USA Baseball has a rich history of preparing our country's top amateurs for the next levels of play," said Rick Riccobono, USA Baseball's Chief Development Officer. "The 2017 season of the PDP will mark another great milestone in that tradition. The planned roll out over the next few years will redefine the path players take to reach their full potential."
Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayoand Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs