When the 2017 American Legion World Series champions Blue Sox of Henderson, Nev., Post 40 attend the Major League Baseball World Series this weekend, they will have something in common with some of the Dodgers and Astros.
Both 100-win teams, which will participate in the 2017 Major League Baseball World Series, feature some prominent players who played American Legion Baseball in their high school days.
The influence for the Astros begins at the top as manager A.J. Hinch played for Midwest City, Okla., Post 170. That Oklahoma Outlaw program went on to win the 2010 American Legion World Series.
Ace pitcher Justin Verlander will look to continue the success that led him to the 2017 ALCS Most Valuable Player award.
Verlander, formerly of Powhatan Post 201 in Virginia, was the 2008 American Legion Baseball Graduate of the Year.
In addition, Verlander was a supporter of The American Legion’s National Poppy Day initiative this past Memorial Day. All donations received are used by The American Legion for its programs that support veterans, the military community and their families.
New Mexico Legion alum Alex Bregman also made news in Game 7 of the ALCS, with an incredible throw to cut down a run at the plate.
Another young star will be on the opposite side, as Corey Seager, who played Legion Baseball for Kannapolis Post 115 in North Carolina, returns from injury for the Dodgers.
Seager was the unanimous choice for National League Rookie of the Year in 2016.
Also for the Dodgers, Rich Hill will face off against Verlander in Game 2.
Hill played Legion Baseball for Milton, Mass., Post 114.
After an injury derailed his career in his 30s, he rebounded by practicing with his nephew's Post 144 squad, rehabbing and coaching baseball on his way to a free agent contract.
These players will look to add to the legacy of American Legion Baseball players who have gone on to great things for these two organizations.