* OF Ben Pelletier (Montreal, Que.) got some impressive hacks in at the Under Armour Showcase in Mesa, Az. Last summer he played south of the border for SCORE International and coach Sam Marsonek, at home with the Patriotes Rive-Sud and coach Michael Bélanger. ….
By Jacques Lanciault
(Translation by Canadian Baseball Network)
Unlike the vast majority of young ball players in Quebec, Benjamin Pelletier has already started his season in the great outdoors.
Indeed, the 16 year-old participated in pre-season Under Armor All-American tournament last weekend in Mesa Az. The competition is one of many steps for selecting athletes who will be invited to participate in the Under Armour All-American tournament, presented by Baseball Factory in August at the legendary Wrigley Field in Chicago.
Recall that in August 2014, two Canadians participated in the prestigious Under Armour All-America game – Josh Naylor and Demi Orimoloye two athletes who have made their mark with the Canadian National Junior Team and are promised a bright future pro ball.
And that’s good, because Pelletier’s objective for 2015 season is to receive an invitation to join the ranks of Canada’s National Junior Team program.
In Mesa, the young man who now in Secondary IV Baseball Sport-curriculum Patriots De Mortagne was not been idle. Also taking part in the three games of his team, Pelletier participated in a variety of demonstration sessions, both to assess the strength of his arm, his defensive qualities, strengths and speed.
In Pelletier’s the days have been very busy and exhausting.
“There were close to 400 players divided into 23 teams that participated in the tournament where the matches were used primarily to evaluate players. Besides, we were filmed during evaluation sessions, as in games,” he said.
The athlete from Montérégie donned the colors, “National” won all three games he played and Pelletier played the outfield in each of game.
“I played the whole three games of the competition, either in my usual position right fielder and rotation in the other two fields to be evaluated,” said Pelletier. “I made some defensive plays, coming in to help in a rundown between third and second and tagged the runner for the out.”
The importance of the victories in this competition is very relative, because the games were used primarily to evaluate players.
Pelletier had two hits in his six official at-bats, which was great. But what is even more important is that he always put the ball in play, not striking out once.
In fact, the player who despite his young age already has a solid tournament experience in the United States was 0-for-2 in the first game and 1-for-3 at the second, from simple on the arrow on the left, before experiencing a perfect game on the offensive during the third game: slamming a single and drawing two walks in three visits to the batter’s box … while scoring twice.
Pelletier returned delighted with his experience.
“It was a great opportunity for me,” said Pelletier. “Apart from having been seen by a crowd of recruiters, the hours spent on the ball field gave me a very good preparation … given the very quiet winter season in Quebec in winter.”