By Aaron Swaney Herald Writer
In southern California for the Area Code games for the second summer in a row, Lake Stevens’ Branden Kelliher and Cascade’s Ky Dye spent some of their offtime at the beach surfing again.
The results weren’t good.
“I think we were worse,” Dye joked, comparing the two’s surfing sessions this summer to last.
Fortunately for both their pitching on the mound was better.
Kelliher and Dye both had strong outings for the Kansas City Royals during this past week’s New Balance Area Code baseball tournament in Long Beach, Calif. In two outings, Kelliher had five strikeouts, one walk and allowed only one hit and run, and Dye struck out three and didn’t allow a run or hit in his two appearances.
“I felt a little more confident this year,” said Kelliher, who was picked over 15 other pitchers to start the first game of the tournament for the Royals.
The Royals’ team results weren’t as great as they lost all four games during the week-long tournament.
The tournament featured some of the best high school baseball players from across the country and scouts from all 30 MLB teams and the MLB Scouting Bureau were in attendance as are college coaches from many of the country’s top programs.
“It’s nice to compete against people at your own ability level,” said Dye, who said he isn’t settled on a college choice and is waiting until after next summer’s amateur draft. “It gives you more of a competitive edge.”
This was the second year in a row both Kelliher, who has verbally committed to play at San Diego University after high school, and Dye traveled to Long Beach to play in the Area Code Games. For the two players, who first met when they were 12 playing for a select baseball team that traveled to Cooperstown, N.Y., to play in a tournament, it was nice to have a friend along on the journey.
“It was awesome. It’s nice to be able to share that moment with him,” Kelliher said.
Both players will be taking some time off before heading to the Northwest Safeco Workout later this month.