Looking to showcase your baseball skills in front of collegiate and professional coaches and scouts this summer? Then Joe Cannon Stadium is to place to be the first weekend in August.
That is when the 15th annual Crab Claw Classic, founded and organized by Old Mill High graduate and current professional scout Lou Holcomb, takes place. It begins with the Aug. 4 workouts and ends with the Aug. 5 all-star game that pits Maryland's top prospects against those from the Mid-Atlantic Region, including players from as far as New York as well as Pennsylvania, Delaware, West Virginia, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and New Jersey.
"It's a good representation of the Mid-Atlantic players and it's a good, competitive game," said Holcomb, who led Cardinal Gibbons to a pair of MIAA B Conference titles as the head coach in 1999 and 2000 after spending time in the Texas Rangers organization. "It's become a little bit of a rivalry between the All-Maryland team against the Mid-Atlantic players."
To be selected to that prestigious all-star affair, which will be hosted by Joe Cannon Stadium at 4 p.m., players must perform well at the Aug. 4 workouts. Pitchers and catchers will display their skills from 9-11 a.m. followed by the position players from noon to 3 p.m.
The pitchers will be graded for velocity, movement and mechanics in their bullpen sessions; catchers will be measured on their pop-up throws to second base as well as hitting. Position players will run through various drills, including infielders taking groundballs at shortstop and outfielders throwing from 250 feet out, and then flash their bats with the focus being on contact and power.
Holcomb and the two coaching staffs, including Archbishop Curley coach Brook Norris, who will coach Team Maryland, and former Cardinal Gibbons coach Roger Czerwinski, who will guide the Mid-Atlantic squad, will then select the two squads, who will square off in a nine-inning affair.
"This is our 15th summer," Holcomb said. "A lot of all-star games have come and gone, so we're proud to be around for 15 years. It's a little milestone."
During each half inning of the all-star game, players will be honored for their performances at the workouts, including the Top Prospect Award, and Holcomb will pay tribute to some past players who are now playing professional baseball by allowing them to throw out the first pitch.
A quartet of Archbishop Spalding players — Nick Vermillion, Justin Pelletreau, Peter Godrick and Nick Benitez — helped Team Maryland win 13-5 a year ago behind an 11-run third inning.
For those interested in participating, the cost is $125 for pitchers and $150 for catchers and position players. Players can add a second position for $50 more. For more information, log on to diamondrecruiting.com/crab-claw-classic.