By Laura Amato
McClancy baseball star Quentin Holmes has picked up so many accolades and been named to so many all-star teams over the last few months that the senior speedster has gotten used to seeing his name listed among the top players in the country.
But, this time, things were a bit different.
Holmes was named to Team USA’s 18U squad last week—after several days of competing against 39 other prospects in Houston—and the outfielder is the first to admit he’s thrilled with this latest honor.
“It’s just excitement,” Holmes said. “I wasn’t too surprised to make the team, but it’s crazy to think about making this team. I was just dreaming of being here last year.”
Holmes—who committed to Mississippi State last year—made a country-wide name for himself this summer with standout performances at the Perfect Game National Showcase and USA Baseball’s Tournament of Stars.
But these last few days in Houston—which included a game at Minute Maid Park and matchups against area college squads—let Holmes show just how dominant he can be on the diamond. He connected on an RBI-single in Team USA’s 5-4 extra-inning loss to Texas on Saturday and is nothing short of confident going forward.
“I had a good game that day, so it was just kind of feeling that this is really happening and it’s been incredible,” Holmes said. Holmes’ reputation on the field has been built on his athleticism. His speed—both on the base paths and in the outfield—drew interest from top-tier college programs long before he committed to the Bulldogs. And now that he’s cemented his roster spot with Team USA, Holmes is ready to take that athleticism across international borders. The squad played a handful of tune-up games in Texas earlier in the week before heading to the PanAm Games in Mexico Friday.
“It’s still crazy to me right now,” Holmes said. “I know I made the team and we’ve already started playing, but it’s still crazy to think about making this squad and then going to another country to play baseball.”
Holmes, of course, was focused on putting bat on ball throughout his time in Texas, but he also made sure to relish the opportunities in front of him.
In fact, stepping onto the field at Minute Maid Park—meeting with Astros players and even the team’s GM—had Holmes nearly pinching himself. “We played on that field the first day we got there, but it just seemed like a completely different place when it was full of people,” he said. “It was awesome to see.”
Holmes has spent the better part of the last six months crisscrossing the country and while success has become the norm, he’s not taking anything for granted. While he’s got his sights set on the future, Holmes isn’t quite sure at what level that future will play out—college or the pros.
It’s a problem he’s more than willing to have.
“I’m always thinking about what’s going to happen in the next couple of months,” he said. “There’s always scouts at these games and I’ve been keeping in touch with my college. So I’m always thinking about both possibilities, but, at the moment, I don’t know what I’m leaning towards.”