Northeast and Anne Arundel Community College grad Rich Spiegel is off to a great start in professional baseball.
Drafted on the 22nd round by Atlanta, Spiegel is playing at Danville, the Braves' Single-A affiliate in the Appalachian League.
"Rich is hitting the baseball, hitting about .400 with three homers and 14 RBIs," said Alex Smith, the Braves' area scouting supervisor who signed the former All-Metro catcher.
Spiegel has begun his pro career as a first baseman/DH, and that has been his only frustration thus far.
"Rich told me he can play with anybody there and now wants the chance to catch," Smith said.
Smith also said that ex-Arundel High and Essex Community College left-handed pitcher Zach Collins has turned things around. Collins started off with a loss and an ERA of 9.00 at Idaho City, another Braves Single-A club, but in his last two outings has lowered his ERA to 4.50.
Two local teams are playing this weekend in the National Amateur Baseball Federation (NABF) 12-and-under East Regional tournament at 6th Street Field in Brooklyn.
Dean Albany's Maryland Orioles A & B teams are hosts of the 10-team regional set to start 9 a.m. tomorrow and continuing through the weekend. Three games are set for Saturday and two Sunday, including the championship at 2:30 p.m. An "if" game in the double-elimination tournament would be Monday at 10 a.m.
Albany's Orioles, 71-5 overall and winner of the Baltimore Metro and Maryland CABA 12 and under leagues, and his B team coached by Tony Mullins will compete for the NABF East title and the right to advance to the World Series in Sylvania, Ohio, beginning Wednesday.
Maryland State Babe Ruth 13-, 14-, and 15-year-old tournaments will be played at Arundel High and Gambrills A.C. fields this weekend. Games begin tomorrow evening and run all day Saturday and Sunday with the state championships to be settled on Wednesday and next Thursday.
Coach Tut O'Hara's Gambrills team, representing Anne Arundel County, Prince George's County, coached by Bowie State University coach Jeff Palumbo, and Frederick should be the top three teams in the nine-team state tournament for 15 year olds.
Sixth Street Field also will be the site for four Continental Amateur Baseball Association (CABA) World Series qualifiers next week.
Teams already qualifying for a CABA World Series include: Gambrills, 13-year-old, Broken Arrow Oklahoma; Yankee Rebels of Baltimore, 14-year-old, Dublin, Ohio; Gunther's Little Orioles, 15-and-under, Crystal Lake, Illinois; and Gunther's Little Orioles, high school eligible, Euclid, Ohio.
Linthicum Sports and the Harford Sox will play for The Maryland CABA 11-year state title Tuesday and Wednesday at 6th Street. The winner goes to CABA World Series in Tarkio, Missouri, July 28 to Aug. 8.
The CABA state tournaments for 12-and-under; 16-and-under; and 18-and-under will be played July 22-25 at 6th Street. Several local teams are also involved in those World Series qualifiers.
Maryland and the East Region are sending teams to eight CABA World Series (age 11 through 18) this year, but is still looking for an unlimited team to play in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Aug. 15-22. If interested call (410) 647-2499.