Herts Falcons and Great Britain Under-17 National Team catcher, Conner Brown, has been invited to this year’s Major League Baseball European Academy Try Outs. He made his Herts Falcons debut in June 2013 at the age of 15 and he has been one of the most improved members of the team over the last three years. His performances for the Great Britain Under-17 National team have also contributed to this invitation.
The MLB European Baseball Academy was created to provide training for European, New Zealand and African baseball prospects by former major leaguers. It also provides a central scouting location during the weeks it is open and over two dozen Academy alumni have signed contracts with MLB teams.
In 2011, Alex Liddi became the first Academy product to be called up to the major leagues with the Seattle Mariners. Donald Lutz was the second, making it in 2013 with the Cincinnati Reds. Instructors have included Barry Larkin, Lee Smith, Art Howe, Wally Joyner, Bruce Hurst, John McLaren, Steve Finley, Craig Shipley and Dale Murphy.
Through July 2013, over 50 Academy alumni had been signed by MLB organizations. So far there have been no British players who have gone on to sign contracts with MLB teams from the Academy, but the signs are that MLB is beginning to recognise the talented players playing in Britain, which is a boost for players in this country.
Conner Brown will be taking part in next week’s segment of the Academy which will be held in Toulouse, France. This is only the second time that a Herts player has been invited. 12 months ago Tom Armstrong and Jamie Gregory represented Herts at the try outs.
Herts fans should rest assured that he will be back in time for Herts Falcons’ next league game on Sunday, 10 May 2015, at the reigning champions, Essex Arrows. However, he will miss the U19 league games on Monday, 4 May.