From the 17U NTIS (National Team Identification Series) team that went to the USA Baseball National Training Center a couple of weeks ago, two pitchers were selected for the 18U trials next summer. RHP Ben Eckels (Davis HS, 2012) and RHP Chris Flexen (Newark Memorial HS, 2012) both showed the type of stuff, command, feel and mound presence that gave them a shot to make the national team.
Congrats to both Ben and Chris! Having been around them for four days, I enjoyed getting to know both of them as kids, and that also goes for the entire team we had there. I thought a couple of other players might get invited to the trials, including 1B Nick Halamandaris (R.L. Stevenson HS, 2012) and 3B/2B Colby Wright (Castro Valley HS, 2012), but it didn't happen. Wright turned in one of the outstanding all-around performances in our third game, with a 3-R homer, a diving play to his left at 3B and a diving stab of a liner headed to RF when he was at 2B. He plays a hard-nosed style of ball on the field and if he isn't getting much D1 recruiting attention, he should be.
As for Halamandaris, yes, he can tend to swing and miss a bit but when he was locked in and sticking with his most simple approach, there wasn't a player in the tourney who hit the ball harder than him, not one. He is headed to Cal and has a chance to be a highly impactful D1 player.