United States LLWS all-star team
(Stats through Saturday’s games)
C-J.R. Rosado, New Jersey: Whether on the mound, behind the plate or in the batter’s box, Rosado made a strong impact at the Series. A talented catcher with a big arm, Rosado hit .364 in four games and reached base in each game. He compiled a .462 on-base percentage, tripled and scored twice. Rosado was equally impressive pitching, striking out 15 in 10 1/3 innings.
IF-Marshall Louque, Louisiana: He easily could have been selected as a pitcher here, but Louque packed quite a wallop at the plate, especially the bigger the games became at the Series. The five-tool player hit .350, slamming five doubles, tripling, driving in four runs and scoring an American-high eight. Louque was equally dominant on the mound, throwing a five-inning no-hitter against Virginia in the loser’s bracket final. Louque did not allow an earned run in three Series appearances and struck out a U.S.-best 16 batters entering the world final.
IF-Justin Lee, Virginia: Just like Louque, Lee could take over games with his pitching or offense. After putting together one of the best Southeast Regional tournament performances ever, Lee threw a four-inning no-hitter against Minnesota and also was part of a combined no-hitter against Rhode Island. He was one of the field’s best hitters, too, batting .571 with five walks and six runs. Lee hit safely in his team’s first three games, reached base in all four and went 12 for 17 during regionals and the Series.
IF-Nakea Kalalehau, Hawaii: A versatile defender who could also play in the outfield, Kahalehau was a constant presence in the middle of Hawaii’s potent lineup. He hit .412 in five games, belting a double and scoring five times. He hit safely in each of his last four games, made just on error and had a .958 fielding percentage, helping his team finish fourth in the world.
IF-Coton Hicks, Virginia: He is only 11, but Hicks provides quite a wallop and was a tough out from Virginia’s cleanup slot. Hicks hit .455, going 5 for 11 with a triple, double and team-high six RBIs. Hicks also scored three times and produced two multiple-hit performances. Playing error-less defense, Hicks hit safely in three of his four games and was key to his team finishing third in the U.S.
OF-Reece Roussel, Louisiana: Roussel is an easy choice as the U.S. Player of the Series. Nobody in Series history has ever produced more hits and Roussel broke that record before even playing in the world final. Entering that game, Roussel had a record 15 hits, batting .750 in six games and delivering mulit-hit performances each time. Even when Roussel was retired, his balls were drilled. Few players at the Series have ever been as locked in as Roussel was. He homered and also reached U.S. Highs with five doubles and nine RBIs. Roussel went 6 for 7 against Virginia and Hawaii with a grand slam and seven RBIs. Oh yeah, he also stole two bases, made no errors and provided spectacular defense in right field. This was a performance that will not soon be forgotten.
OF-Gavin Price, Oregon: Also a good pitcher, Price was super in center field and hit .429 in Oregon’s three Series games. Price compiled a .556 on-base percentage, reached base in all three games and also drove in a run. Price took hits away with his defense and also turned a double play, helping Oregon nearly rally to defeat Louisiana in its second game.
OF-Duke Aloy, Hawaii: A reliable defender whether in the outfield or infield, Aloy hit .556 and went 5 for 9 during Hawaii’s run to the U.S. Final. Aloy consistently helped spark rallies and had a .600 on-base percentage. He also drove in three runs and produced at least one hit in four of his five games.
Utility-Sal Garcia, New Jersey: It is not a stretch saying that Garcia played shortstop as well as any defender has at the Series during the 2000s. Garcia put on a defensive clinic that might make Ozzie Smith envious. Time after time, he turned potential hits into outs and made no errors in four games. He was a fabulous leader for New Jersey and produced a .385 on-base percentage. Garcia twice ignited go-ahead rallies in the fifth and sixth innings against Oregon and Rhode Island with leadoff doubles. Garcia turned two doubleplays and surrendered just one hit in 4 1/3 innings pitched while striking out
P-Egan Prather, Louisiana: The starter in yesterday’s world final, Prather dazzled in his two performances that helped Louisiana win its first national championship. Prather went 1-0 with a 1.44 ERA and struck out 13 in 8 1/3 innings. He came up huge in an elimination game against New Jersey, throwing 5 1/3 innings of 1-hit baseball. His 10 strikeouts that day were the most by an American pitcher entering the world final and he took a perfect game into the fourth inning.
P-Owen Pfeffer, Rhode Island: He shined at the New England Regional and was even better at the Series. Following a complete-game performance in the New England championship, Pfeffer went 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA in two Series performances. Pfeffer kept Rhode Island’s run alive when he threw a complete-game two-hitter against Kentucky. Pfeffer surrendered just two hits in 6 1/3 innings at the Series and his crafty left-hander also struck out eight.