Medford native and Patchogue-Medford junior Matt Vogel has been selected to the 16U National Team this year, according to USA Baseball.
Following a six-day tryout and evaluation period in Cary, N.C., Vogel was one of 20 players from the across the nation, and the only from New York, to make the club, which travels to Lagos de Moreno, Mexico for the 2011 IBAF World AA/16U Youth Championships August 19-28.
“It means the world to me,” Vogel said. “You represent your country, family and friends. It’s kind of a situation where yourself means nothing.”
Vogel, a right-handed pitcher, said he’s willing to do the small things to help the team.
“You’re getting put in the same category as the best ball players to ever play the game,” he said, referring to New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, his favorite player. “Once you put on that USA jersey it's a whole other world. I get the chills putting that jersey on.”
The 16U team will train and compete in two exhibition games from August 14-16, before it leaves for Mexico on August 18.
California leads all states in players selected with seven, followed by Florida with five, Tennessee with two, and South Carolina, Texas, Georgia, Alabama, Arizona, and New York each with one.
Vogel is one of three current players who has previous experience playing for Team USA. He was on the 14U National Team in 2009.
“And I promise when we come back from Mexico,” Vogel said, “we will be bringing the gold back to this beautiful country.”
Stay tuned to Patch for updates on Vogel’s experience in Mexico.