The Big River’s Big Decision: What will Rio Ruiz do if he makes U.S. National team, who has tournament games during the football season

Bishop Amat’s Rio Ruiz won a gold medal over the weekend on the winning Babe Ruth team in the Tournament of Stars in North Carolina, a 3-2 victory over AABC. Then more good news came for the Big River on Monday as Ruiz was one of 40 players selected to the 18 and under U.S. National teams trial roster.
Here’s where it gets interesting: The 18U National Team Trials are running today through June 30 in North Carolina, and will conclude with the inaugural Prospect Classic. The two-game series will match the 18-U team against USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team, July 1-2 in North Carolina. After that is concluded, team officials will select 28 players for the second round of trials Sept 12-21 in North Carolina. From there, 20 will be selected to compete in the 2011 COPABE Pan American AAA/18U Championships in Cartagena, Colombia, Sept. 23-Oct. 2.

OUTLOOK: What does this all mean for Rio and the Bishop Amat football team? It means their senior quarterback misses a few practices now, with the big decisions coming if Ruiz makes the 28-man roster in September, or the 20-man roster late September and early October. In other words, do you play for USA baseball, Bishop Amat football or both? I spoke with Rio’s father, Rudy Ruiz, who said he will cross that decision-making bridge if Rio continues advancing with USA baseball. Rudy Ruiz said he will speak with Amat coach Steve Hagerty to discuss the scenario’s and how it will work out. When I spoke with Hagerty, he said the news was to fresh to comment on. There are other things to consider such as school and the length of time he would have to miss. It’s a unique situation, of the 40 players selected, Rudy Ruiz believes Rio is the only one who plays football for their high school team. My gut feeling is that Rio would opt to play football if a decision had to be made, but playing for your National Team in the Pan-Am championships in Colombia is as tempting as it gets.

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  • Witness

    Rio, Congratulations on your accomplishments.
    We are all very proud of you.
    Go USA!

  • 12th man

    I say he plays both~..This is a once in a lifetime opportunity that a young kid dreams of growing up..Amat wont need him for the first 5 games although they do play a tough Servite team in the second week I dont think they win anyways even with Rio in there..but it would make things intresting…Good Luck either way~

  • sgvbaseball

    Just giving an update on some area players. Adrian Dehorta from South Hills was selected for the 16U USA team trials in Cary, NC. He was selected out the of USA baseball championships in Az. Grant Hockin from Damien HS was also selected

    Vahn Bozoian(Ayala), C. J. Saylor(South Hills) and Rio Ruiz(Bishop Amat) were selected from the USA tournament of Stars to stay for the USA trials to make the 18U national team.

    Miguel Chivara from La Puente and Falter Baily from Chino Hills were selected for the 14u USA team trials.

    Here is the link:

  • Paul Cody

    I guess Mike Viera reads this blog, that was quick.

  • NotSince1995

    Now doesn’t sgvbaseball do a much better and BALANCED job of reporting the facts…?
    Just askin cus if it weren’t for sgvbaseball you’d think that the BishopNation kid was the only special kid…! Fact is that there are at least 4 others in the SGV that are very deserving of the same recognition…No?
    Let me see…Baseball = CIF Ring, Football = 1st round playoff Defeat. Uhh…North Carolina or Cathedral, Cartagena or Garfield…? Pablo Escobar or Gano…? I think its pretty clear…!
    Not in 2011 Either…

  • just sayin’

    NotSinceEver- here’s one for you – sgvbaseball is an Amat grad. LOL! Thanks Mike. Keep up the great work!

  • eastsider

    not since 1995 ,you are an idiot. the story is not about the team USA trials.the story is about his decision to play if he makes it and miss some football games.there was an earlier story last week that mentioned the other players.

  • reality

    Interesting watching the local hype machine at work. Our very own Lebron James. The kid has not even started his senior year and he is gonna be a international sensation representing the good ole USofA in So. America. And he’s from right here, from good ole BofA. Wow!!!! I gotta get this kids autograph cause its gonna be worth a fortune.Can I be part of his entourage. Maybe I can get his used bubblegum and sell it on ebay. Can’t we just follow this kids progress as he earns it without disecting his summer travel plans. Tell me about who is playing not about who is not in the good ole SGV.

  • SaintsR4real

    Sorry for the side track, more interesting…

    Dream Plan for East SGV Football lovers…

    9/01 “Smudgepot” @ Citrus College

    9/02 “Glendora @ Charter Oak”

    9/03 “Kings of Covina @ District Field”

  • Who Cares


    If you haven’t figured it out yet we are all tired of your select elite players. Next are you going to start reporting what he is eating for dinner. Let me give you a real good example, their is a girl that attended Wilson high school, last year she played on the USA National Rugby team. She played on it, wasn’t trying out played on it. Did you give her any love?

    Here you are openning up a thread on Rio trying out for the baseball team.

  • Bearcat Fan

    Two underclassmen All-Star games were played on June 18th involving the Valleys best players, and not a word mentioned.
    P.S. What does Rio The Big River Like to eat for breakfast? Why dont you roll over and ask him!

  • FredJ

    Bearcat Fan, “Not a word on it,” guess you have selective memory. Did we cover the game? No, it was one of those Saturdays where we had nobody available, everyone either on vacation, furlough or days off, can’t cover everything.

  • SGV Baseball Follower

    good luck to Rio Ruiz… i love hearing about SGV ball players following there dream…

  • SGV Baseball Follower

    Does any know if the SO CAL CUP is being played this year?? i keep checking website and it has old information.

  • AMAT 73

    I am not one to bash on you but that last post is really off the wall . This I believe is a prep sports blog for all the local teams . You write “we have to cover soccer at the Rose bowl , it’s in our coverage area”. Well I looked up and down the rosters and have failed to find one of the SGV’s prep soccer players on either one. It’s great to cover for the Trib’s sports page but it is defintely not prep sports . That underclassmen game was a show case for the up and coming players for next season which is important to SGV’S fans of baseball and to the many parents of those players. Also that coverage of the All-Star football game kind of lacked also , dead battery or not. Even though Rio is a fine player and I am glad he is a Lancer you should have given all the other players who qualified to make the team a little more credit than just writing about Rio . We catch enough heat as it is without you guys adding fuel to the fire with all the Rio propaganda .

    Hey notsincewhenever , you need a towel to wipe that egg off your face.

  • Amat Bully

    Really again with Rio come on dude there are other kids in the sgv.

    i had to put my 2cents in i am kind of tired of seeing the same player he good but you gave him enough attention. their are others in the sgv if you didnt know that.

  • soccer game

    I am not a soccer fan at all. Last game i watched was when the USA player ripped of her shirt when she mad the penatly kick to win the world cup back in the nineties. Having said that, there are events that happen in the area that requires all hands on deck. the soccer game at the rose bowl is one of those events. Yes, Fred’s primary focus is on prep sports, however, the Tribune is not big enough and don’t have enough resources to cover the game without help of these guys. Believe it or not, there are probably more Tribune customers that care more about that game than prep sports in the area and the Tribune made a business decesion to cover that game with prep sports resources. Big deal, proabably was the right decision. If you are pissed that the game showed up on the prep blog, then just skip it an move on. People are bitching just to bitch at this point.

    As far as the underclassman game, if they didn’t have resources, then it didn’t get covered. last i checked, we don’t pay a dime to view this blog or the online paper. Advertisers do and if they don’t se the hits, they won’t advertise. This is a business. Cannot keep everyone happy.

    sorry for all the typos…too lazy to fix them

  • Fred Robledo

    When I post a soccer thread teasing the Mexico-U.S., game, I’m not writing a story, just a quick blog post. Every now and then I post something non prep related, it’s not a big deal. How much more coverage do you want us to give the SGV all-star football game? It’s not our fault organizers didn’t have rosters finalized until a week before the game. The week of the game we had a Michael Ball feature, Aram’s pre-game write-up and Steve Ramirez’s front-page game story that took up half the front page. You tell me how that “lacks coverage” of the game? I post more of a variety of topics than anyone and post more often. But if you want to focus on the teams and players I feature the most and complain about it, go right ahead. Rio happens to be a special kid doing special things at the most prominent high school in our area. As for the “there are other kids in the Valley,” comments, what about it? On the same day I wrote this about Rio, I posted Berg going to UCLA and Gelalich going to Pepperdine. Plus, this is an important topic because it could have a huge impact on the biggest football team in the area, so it has to be mentioned.

  • sgvbaseball

    The SoCal Cup will go this year….I am sending them the info to update the site in the next couple days. It will be August 30 and 31.

  • Wayne Goodwin dad from Diamond Ranch:

    Most important, Congrats to the fine young men (Bozoian, Ruiz, Saylor,(done in a-z order no pref)) that were selected to possibly represent the USA in an international event. This is a heartfelt good luck and I hope you all make it. To me that is worth covering by our local paper and I look forward to reading more about it from the Trib!!!!!

    Now, I need to clear something up: I am NOT the poster that uses my last name as a handle in the blogs. Whoever that is please use a different handle so no one gets confused and thinks that your views are my views. THEY ARE NOT. I was called this morning and told about a post with the same name as mine. I immediately called and told Tribune that is not me. It was suggested that I need to post a denial. So here it is. Again I am NOT that guy.

    That poster sounds as if he wants publicity for other kids or maybe his own. I get it, it is nice to see our sons name in the papers, mine too. But please use a different handle to express your views so they do not come back at me as my views.

    I think great players do deserve the press and that includes a whole slew of Tribune area players as we are blessed with many many up and coming underclass baseball players of which many will achieve great things.

    My pet peeve is that the high GPA scholar athlete players do not get enough ink however I choose not to make a big issue of this with the papers.

    Lastly, I was at the junior class event and it was well run and had a few colleges there in attendance. All players appeared to have enjoyed it. For those interested in coverage, I believe there are pictures on maxpreps. To me, all the players from both teams are MVP’s. From our team the MVP choice of Henley (Bonita) was good-3 run HR (nice bomb). Garza (Bonita) pitched well and could have been considered pitcher of the game or co-MVP or even Morales (Los Altos) I think had 3 hits-offensive player. I am thankful that someone thought enough of these kids and my son to put on this event. Thanks to the organizers and the coaches that volunteered their Saturday when they could be with their families the day before fathers day.

    Please whoever is using the name please change your handle as it reflects on me and even possibly my son.

    Thank you,

    Wayne Goodwin

  • Notorious

    @Wayne Goodwin
    Without the use of a phone book, I’m going to guess that there are several people with the last name “Goodwin” who live in the SGV. My advice to you is to get over yourself. I understand that the other “Goodwin” just called into the Trib. to complain about you using his name.

  • NIce job

    Hey Fred, Im one of many who enjoy your prep section and understand that this blob is not the place to bad mouth teenage athletes, and that this blob is for entertainment purposes only. I/we enjoy reading about Rio and all the other great athletes coming out of our area and all their success stories. Keep’m coming.

  • Coach


    Are you really that clueless!

    Do you really not get it!

    Read what you just wrote, you commented about Ruiz and a few other players. That is the exact issue, you are comparing Ruiz coverage to everyone else. Why don’t you try comparing Ruiz coverage to the next highest kid in coverage. I really think it is going to be at least 10 to 1 thats being nice more like 20 to 1. You talk about so little resources over at the tribune and you waste so much of it on one kid.

    Its so bad you got Bishop Amat bloggers supporting the cause 🙁

  • proportional

    coach – compare Ruiz’s MLB draft status to the next highest player. 1st round to 10th round? Sounds about right.

  • E5

    MLB doesn’t draft DH’s in the first round, maybe as a pitcher?

  • straight haters

    This valley leads the region in haters…Fred is right, Rio just happens to be the best Athlete in this area in the school that matters the most…it is not his fault that no one else can compete at his level in both his sports… He is very, very special and what he does, and possibly doesn’t do is always big news…Sorry your kid just doesnt get the ink or the mention you would like, but Rio was just named ESPN Rise “Junior of the year” in Baseball, added to the fact that he was CIF player of the year and SGV Tribune Player of year…he had a great year and lead his team to a championship…so to all of you folks who just cant take the fact that he gets exactly what he deserves, I suggest you start you own blog and put your little guy all over the cover, send it to grandma and say…”look ma what little Johney has done”…Nothing…Rio is an all american athlete and id so just be glad he is from your area…Haters

  • Colt74

    Rio Ruiz is an exceptional athlete and young man. No denying this.

    Steak and Lobster is an exceptional meal. I still would not want it Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner because after a while it would stop becoming exceptional and start becoming boring…

  • Real talk

    I think everyone missed the point. All the other sgv baseball players are not the starting QB for the football team or even play football. Right? Fred you should just open a Amat hater forum so that these haters could have a place to agree on how they hate on Amat.

  • FredJ

    Coach, do you really think it’s my job to try to cover each kid equally? Rio’s name has been mentioned more on the L.A. Times pages than anyone else from our Valley too, why do think that is? Why are certain athletes in college and professional sports written about more than others, sometimes as you say, even ten times more than the next person? Why is Tiger Woods still the most written about person in golf, even when he’s not playing? Answer those questions and I’ll answer yours.

  • Please stay, RR!





  • Don’t read this..It’s about Amat!

    FRED IS RIGHT..the Los Angeles Times absolutely adores Rio Ruiz and they have proven this time and time again.

    And if you did not notice, Bishop Amat baseball finished #1 in the LA Times’ top 25 list. BA has absolutely no business being in Div 4! lol Well actually, 2 other Div 4 schools made the top 25!

    So haters…

    Considering that the LA Times has given more press on Ruiz in comparison to the SGV Tribune you really should stop giving Fred and Aram a hard time on their coverage on him.

    Besides, no one twisted your arm and forced you to read and/or comment in this thread. If you are growing tired of reading of Ruiz or Bishop Amat….JUST DON’T READ IT.

    So simple….so very simple.

  • Aram Tolegian

    To be honest with you, I think the Amat fans should just be happy Rio is even considering still playing football.

    These days, kids specialize in one sport because even the offseason demands on them are overwhelming — travel ball, tournaments, clinics, camps. How can you have enough time to play two sports anymore?

    And then you throw in that Rio is likely looking at a seven-figure payday 6 months after football ends, and you can see why his priorities may be elsewhere than football.

    I’m a selfish jerk and I hope he plays football, but I wouldn’t blame him at all for doing what he needs to do. And the great thing is that the kid is such a stand-up kid that he’s legitimately trying to do both.

    I know it’s probably taxing on Coach Hagerty, but Rio is a very special case. Hopefully everybody gets what they want.

  • jcaz

    I havent commented much lately on this blog as I have pretty much been on the sidelines these past few months, however, I do find this topic rather amusing. because if anything, its so darn funny how many of you guys have this anal thing when it comes to Fred.

    But before I go there, I have to ask this question of all of you.

    Is there something wrong with “NON-SENSE ?” The guys seems to have discovered the art of articulating a sentence and has recently learned how to write on a blog without looking like a dumb azz !

    Good job Non-sense !

    But, I digress.
    Fred does a great job of reporting on stories that interest a lot of folks in this valley, and if he didnt allot of you phucks wouldnt be reading this blog.

    Over the years that this blog has been operating, it has certainly evolved well beyond what its original intent was, and has become an incredible work that many take for granted.

    I honestly believe that.

    The simple fact is that some of these negative comments directed at his journalistic skills are so way out there that you have to think, that there must be something much more to the negativity than what first meets the eye.

    It seems to me that some of you have an axe to grind with him.

    Sure, he coves Amat…… A lot !!

    But it isnt as if he doesnt cover any of the other schools as well. But the fact is that his reporting only reflects the level at which a program such as Amat (or any other school) plays at.

    For example, this past year, Bonita has been on fire with many f there athletic programs. As a result, they have had a great deal of press both on this blog and in the paper. If you doubt me, then take a look at the archives. Theses guys have had an amazing run with tier sports teams this year and as a result, their success on the field has reflected the amount of coverage that they have received here.

    Additionally, if you recall, over the years it has been other schools that have had just as much ink as have the Lancers. For example, a few years ago we had the Northvew barbell and wrestling teams show cased, and just recently, we had Charter Oaks success on the gridiron give them the number one ranking in the entire SGV !

    The only problem with all of this however, was that while all of these schools had amazing success with many of their sports programs, the fact was that many f them were never were able to sustain that success for an extended period of time.

    Maybe that is what distinguishes a private school from a public one ? The abilities to continually e competitive in sports for an extended period of time ? Or maybe as many in here claim, its because of the recruiting that goes on or maybe its simply because Amat has excellent programs that many parents want theyre children to experience.

    Sure, there are the inequalities that exist between a private and a public school, but it doesnt mean that allot of you guys have to go ape schitz on Fred because of the fact that hes just doing his job.

    Reporting the news.

    The fact is that if this kid wasnt as good as he was, he would never get to be on the cover of “the rolling stone”

  • Smallcitymc

    A player of Rio’s caliber doesn’t come around very often. Just look at the scouting services. Many have him as a top 10 pick in the NATION. So why all the fuss? Any media in any market with a player of this caliber in their area would be foolish not to cover him extensively.

    As for football, I, like most others, hopes he stays. He’s a general out on the field and the results show that. Without him Amat will have a tough go at it.

  • Times

    Its just high schhol football? there is no future for you in football at D-1 level so why put your self in jeoperdy playing football.Stick to baseaball.

  • Real talk

    Now that we are talking about Rio as a qb I think he needs a lot of work. He has a real problem with his ability to read what the defense it doing to him. I wish Amat would just get a kid that is a pure QB. I like Rio as a receiver and in the secondary. I have seen him make bad throws in big moments because he does not have that pure QB in him. But what do you expect his first year playing the position. I don’t think he will be able to play baseball and do the growth he needs to be a PAC 5 championship QB. What do you guys think?

  • usa baseballer

    Rio Ruiz has a good first game at usa baseball trials.goes 2-4 with 2 rbis and a triple. 2 pitchers that Amat faced this season also having good games. Chase dejong and troy conyers.

  • Doing big things!
  • Decision Time

    Rio has just been officially announced to the USA team. Good luck to you young man. Not many get the chance to play with the “USA” across their chest. Not only will you make your family, school, and SGV proud but also your country. Go ahead and represent. I’m sure Hagerty is a good American and he will give you his blessing and if he doesn’t understand too bad for him.