Athletics look for strong team in new region

The Oakland Athletics changed regions for the 2011 Area Code Baseball Games. For the last two years, they brought the team from the Southeast and some quality players, too. Now they move to their own backyard and look to bring Northern California's best. For the first time in over five years, California will have a seperate Northern California and Southern California team. The Athletics' region actually goes as far South as Bakersfield.

The A's held their only tryout at Banner Island Ballpark, home to their single-A affiliate - Stockton Ports.

One of the youngest players at the tryout was CalHiSports.com State Sophomore of the year, Ryan Tellez. The 2014 infielder is out of Elk Grove (Elk Grove, Calif.). During his batting practice session he hit a couple out of the park and showed some strong opposite field power.

Local product, Giovanni Brusa, showed some pop at the plate, too. Brusa is out of St. Mary's (Stockton, Calif.).

The pitchers at the tryout don't get as many reps as one may think to show their stuff. Freddy Avis of The Menlo School (Atherton, Calif.) made the most of it. In the simulated game he topped out at 94mph on the gun, threw is slider 85mph and his curve sat at 75mph. That 20mph difference gave the batters fits.

Harold Abend coverd the tryout in Oakland for ESPN and you can read more of his report here.