Nick Allen hopes to soon wear an Athletics uniform and make his MLB debut. He also hopes to wear a Team USA uniform in Tokyo.
Allen, 22, was named to the USA Baseball 28-man training camp roster Sunday for the World Baseball Softball Confederation Baseball Americas Qualifier. The final 26-man roster will be announced on Sunday, May 30.
The qualifier begins May 31 with USA playing Nicaragua in Port St. Lucie, Fla. Baseball will be played in the Olympics this year for the first time since 2008. Six national teams will compete against each other, and four countries -- Japan, Israel, Mexico and South Korea -- already have qualified.
Team USA was three outs away from qualifying for the tournament, which will be played from July 27 through Aug. 7, when they blew a ninth-inning lead and lost to Mexico 3-2 in 10 innings during the Premier12 tournament in Tokyo in November 2019.
Allen is a middle infielder who is considered the A's third-best prospect by MLB Pipeline, behind just Tyler Soderstrom and A.J. Puk. He is impressive with his glove on defense, and his bat continues to improve.
Listed at only 5-foot-8 and 166 pounds, Allen is off to a strong start in Double-A this season. Through 17 games with the Midland RockHounds, Allen is batting .297 with a .788 OPS. His defense likely always will come first, but his improvements at the plate have to be a big plus for the A's.
With the Olympics and a possible call-up to majors before he knows it, Allen has a lot to look forward to in the near future.