CHARLESTON, SC - Riley Park will play host to some of the premier collegiate talent in the country and abroad for the first time this summer as the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team faces the Japan Collegiate All-Stars in the 42nd USA vs. Japan All-Star Series on Saturday, July 7 at The Joe.
The international contest will feature appearances by former Clemson Head Baseball Coach Jack Leggett and former Citadel infielder and current Louisville Coach, Dan McDonnell, both of whom will be available to meet with fans. U.S. and Japan players will be available for autographs before the game with batting practice open to the public for a pregame fan fest.
Led by the LSU skipper and former National Coach of the Year, Paul Manieri, and his staff, a U.S. roster comprised of some of the top non-draft eligible college players in the country will face off against the Japan Collegiate All-Stars as part of the historic international friendship series between the two nations. The U.S. leads the all-time series, 23-18, including a 3-2 series victory in 2017.
"The USA versus Japan Collegiate All-Star Series is a terrific opportunity to help grow the game, and we jumped at the opportunity to host this prestigious event at The Joe for the first time," said RiverDogs President and General Manager Dave Echols. "We're also excited to welcome some of the premier collegiate coaches in the country on an evening showcasing some of the young talent not only in the U.S., but internationally as well."
The USA Baseball Collegiate National Team competes every summer in games across the United States and overseas against the world's top baseball talent. As part of its 2018 schedule, the U.S. will take on the Japan Collegiate All-Stars, as well as compete in a five-game series against both Chinese Taipei and Cuba.
"The USA Baseball Collegiate National Team is thrilled to play Game Four of our historic USA versus Japan Collegiate All-Star Series in Charleston," said Eric Campbell, General Manager for USA Baseball National Teams. "The RiverDogs have an exceptional reputation as being a top-class organization and Riley Park is a first-class facility. We are honored to be hosted for what should be an exciting night of baseball under the lights in Charleston."
Players who have taken the field for the Collegiate National Team and have gone on to have successful Major League Baseball careers include Jim Abbott, Kris Bryant, Troy Glaus, Todd Helton, Ryan Howard, Barry Larkin, Tino Martinez, Dustin Pedroia, David Price, Huston Street, Mark Teixeira, Troy Tulowitzki, Jason Varitek and Ryan Zimmerman, among others.