Tony Thompson, who just completed his sophomore season as the third baseman for the Kansas University baseball team, is one of 34 players invited to try out for the United States National Team, the school announced Wednesday.
Team USA, which will hold its tryout during a training camp beginning June 14, will trim its final roster to 22 players before beginning its competitive schedule against Team Canada on June 25.
"I am thrilled for Tony," said Kansas coach Ritch Price, who worked as an assistant last summer with Team USA. "I am confident that he will continue to play this great game at the highest level and earn a roster spot on our 2009 team. When I recommended Tony to Team USA, I was proud to point out that not only is he an outstanding player, he is an even better person. He will represent our country, himself, his family, the University of Kansas and our program in a first-class manner."
Thompson, a Reno, Nev., native who earned first-team all-Big 12 honors this season, led the Jayhawks in 10 statistical categories and is currently the conference leader in hits (96), home run (21) and RBIs (82). He was also selected a Louisville Slugger all-American third-team member after breaking KU's single-season home run record and closing the season with a 20-game hitting streak.
If Thompson makes the final Team USA roster, meanwhile, he would represent the first Kansas player ever to do so.
"Having been an assistant coach on the 2008 gold medal and undefeated club, I know first-hand the experiences that lie in front of Tony," Price said. "It will be the greatest experience of his baseball life."