USA Baseball Journey continues for Stankiewicz

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PHOENIX (CBS5) -

Grand Canyon University head baseball coach Andy Stankiewicz continues his journey as manager of the USA Baseball 18U National Team today when he travels to Houston, Tex., for the National Team Trials.

In June, Stankiewicz oversaw the Tournament of Stars, which featured 108 of the country's best baseball players that are eligible for 18U National Team consideration. Stankiewicz and his staff narrowed that down to 40 players for the workouts at the University of Houston from Aug. 23-28.

Those 40 players form the pool of talent from which USA Baseball will select its 18U National Team that will go on to represent the nation at the 2014 COPABE 18U Pan American Championships, to be held in September. The 18U National Team has won gold at four of the last five international 18U events.

Once the National Team is selected, the squad will work out from Aug. 29-Sept. 2, including stops at Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros, before heading to Mexico for the Pan American Championships.

"The Tournament of Stars showcased great players from all over the country," said Stankiewicz. "We brought that number down to 40 to meet in Houston beginning on Saturday, where we will have trials for about a week. Then that number will become 20, and it's going to be difficult to narrow it down because these are 40 great players. It will be a challenge and I expect it to be a very competitive week."

"USA Baseball does it right," added Stankiewicz. "Working out at the University of Houston will be great exposure for these players. We have a great staff, so I'm excited to get down there and work with these guys one-on-one. It will be a great experience and I'm proud to put on a USA jersey."

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