Del Mar youth wins Pitch, Hit & Run competition

Del Mar’s Matty Allen recently won the 2014 San Diego Padres Pitch, Hit & Run Team Championship at Petco Park, where the Championship competition was held June 7.

Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run is a skills event for boys and girls where participants have the opportunity to compete in four levels of competition, including Team Championship events at all 30 Major League ballparks and the National Finals at the MLB All-Star Game.

“It’s awesome, yet nerve-racking.”

That’s the way Matty described competing in the national finals of the Pitch, Hit & Run Competition.

Established in 1997, the competition hosts more than 4,000 local competitions each year. From there, participants are filtered through regional and sectional rounds. The top three from each age division advance to the team competition held in each Major League city between May 31 and June 29.

That’s what brought Matty to Petco Park for a second straight year, along with 23 other participants. He was one of three finalists in the 9-10-year-old boys division.

The top three winners nationally from each age group among all 30 teams will have the opportunity to compete in the national competition during All-Star Week on July 15 at Target Field in Minneapolis.

So what advice would a seasoned veteran like Matty give to his fellow competitors? It was rather simple, and a timeless formula for success.

“Practice. Practice a lot,” he said. “It definitely helps.”