Brian Ryman dreams of coaching for Team USA.
In the meantime, though, he’ll help his country out by finding the best baseball talent.
In his first year as the USA Baseball coordinator for Tennessee, the 32-year-old hopes to spot some of the nation’s best young players at two upcoming camps at Lipscomb.
“It has always been a dream of mine to coach on one of the national teams,” Ryman said. “I hope this is just the first step to do that.”
USA Baseball will hold tryouts for 16-and-under and 17-under-teams on June 18 and July 2 at Lipscomb’s Dugan Field.
Players will be vying for a spot on the Mid-Atlantic Region team, which consists of players from Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. At least seven players from each tryout — there are eight in the region over the next month — will be invited to the Mid-Atlantic Region tryouts on July 24-25 in Charlotte.
The top 18 players in each age division will be named to the Mid-Atlantic team and compete against 14 other regions in a national tournament at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, N.C.
From that pool, a minimum of 16 players will be selected to compete in future national team trials and national team development program opportunities, thus inching one step closer to making Team USA.
“Last year our region placed four kids on the national team so I think we have as good of a chance as anybody,” Ryman said. “When you’re not dealing with Florida or some heavy populated baseball states our chances go up even more. The good thing about it is that they only let 50 kids in each session. So they really get evaluated. We’ve invited all the [area] college coaches to come out. It’s just another recruiting opportunity for kids to be seen as well.”
Ryman is no stranger to baseball in Middle Tennessee.
Since 2006, he has worked with the Lipscomb baseball team. He is currently the director of operations for the entire athletic department.
For the last seven years he has served as the director of the Middle Tennessee Outlaws, a nonprofit amateur organization for players ages 14 to 18. He also spent the past two summers as the manager of the defunct Nashville Outlaws, a summer collegiate wooden-bat team.
A Jefferson City, Tenn., native, whose father, Keith, is a professional scout for the Chicago Cubs, Ryman believes baseball talent in Tennessee is improving at a “rapid rate.” He says better high school coaches and the recent success of area college programs like Vanderbilt have aided the boost in popularity.
“A lot of high schools have invested money in it and there is really a sense of pride,” he said. “The Tennessee Baseball Coaches Association has done some unbelievable things for our game in this state. High school baseball and travel baseball have just elevated in the last five years.”
For more information about the camps or to register, visit midatlanticntis.com.