CARY, NC (WATE) – Tennessee baseball’s Drew Gilbert and Blade Tidwell have been named to the 2021 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team, USA Baseball announced on Thursday.
The Tennessee duo begin their summer stints with the collegiate national team on July 2 as the 45-man roster will be split into two separate teams, the Stars and Stripes, and play 11 intrasquad scrimmages.
The CNT will play a game at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, North Carolina, on July 4 at 1:30 p.m. ET. The game will be streamed on USABaseball.com and on USA Baseball’s Facebook and YouTube channels.
UT is one of 12 programs to have two or more players included on this year’s CNT, while 30 different schools were represented in total.
Gilbert emerged as one of the Vols’ top hitters during a stellar sophomore season on Rocky Top, ranking second on the team with 62 RBI and third on the squad with 74 hits.
The Stillwater, Minnesota, native also blasted 10 home runs on the year, including two walk-off blasts, none bigger than his iconic game-winning grand slam against Wright State in the NCAA regional opener on June 4. Gilbert went on to earn NCAA Knoxville Regional Most Outstanding Player honors after helping lead the Big Orange to their first NCAA Super Regional since 2005.
Tidwell had a fantastic freshman season. The Loretto, Tennessee, native went 10-3 with a 3.74 ERA on the year while recording 90 strikeouts in 98.2 innings pitched.
Tidwell’s 10 victories were tied for the second most by a freshman in program history and helped him earn Freshman All-SEC honors and Perfect Game Freshman All-America honors.