American Legion

Eagles 19U players display high baseball IQ in fast start

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Ray Hamill/HumboldtSports.com – Keenan Morris in action for the Eagles over the weekend.

By Ray Hamill — Off to an impressive 7-0 start this season, a loaded Humboldt Eagles 19U American Legion baseball team has been living up to expectations thus far.

The roster features the best players from seven of the nine local high school programs, including a few college standouts, and just about every one of them has been contributing through the early action.

Aside from a three-error outing on Monday afternoon, in fact, there has been little to criticize about any aspect of the team’s performances, with some stellar pitching, explosive offense and strong defense.

But most of all, what head coach Matt Tomlin likes about this year’s roster is their mental approach to the game.

“I really like the baseball IQ of this team,” Tomlin said over the weekend, during a four-game sweep of a quality Sacramento Better Baseball club. “They’re coaching each other in the dugout. They’re talking about what they’re seeing out of the other team.”

From the get-go, the players appeared ready for the new season, with few signs of rustiness in the wake of a three-month layoff.

And Tomlin believes the players’ collective drive has played a big part in the fast start.

“It shows me that these guys, who are serious about playing baseball at this level, were finding ways to be ready to play,” Tomlin said.

The Eagles continue a busy early season with a doubleheader against touring Team Australia at St. Bernard’s on Wednesday afternoon.

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