Frosh ball player selected for prestigious baseball camp


Nancy Gutierrez

Azael Hernandez (center) celebrates his silver medal victory at the NTIS tournament this past week in North Carolina.

Myles Garza, Pepper Bough Staff Writer

Azael Hernandez prepares for his next at-bat at the NTIS tournament in Cary, North Carolina. (Nancy Gutierrez)

Freshman Azael Hernandez was recently honored with selection to the National Team Identification Series (NTIS) trials for USA Baseball in North Carolina, where his team took the silver medal.

Azael has played baseball for over 10 years, and this honor is a major event in his baseball career. As a third baseman whose dream is making it to the big league, Azael sees this as a huge step for him.

Azael learned about the NTIS tournament from a friend. “One day my friend showed me this page and I went home and looked into it,” he said. Once he signed up, he was already beginning the training process before his acceptance. “We had to do trials of all sorts before even being on the team.”

NTIS determines which student-athletes will join the US National Baseball team. There are six regions nationwide where athletes, like Azael, are identified as potential National team players. Azael was one of 36 players from the Southwest Region in his age group invited to NTIS camp in Cary, North Carolina. He will join hundreds of others at camp to practice for the World Olympic games they will soon be playing.

Azael stated that the better he plays at camp, the longer he will be on the team. After the camp and tournament in North Carolina, the program will pick select players to stay on the team for next year. 

When the Olympics were mentioned Azael said he would love to play for Team USA. With dreams of playing Major League Baseball and for Team USA, Azael has a lot on his plate for the future. 

Without even playing a game for the Yellowjackets, Azael has built an impressive resume. He is looking forward to starting his Colton High career. “I can’t wait till the time comes.”

Be on the look out for number 14.