The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Sports

October 13, 2013

NLDS hero remembers AAABA Tournament

(Continued)

ALTOONA —

Adams' long road from AAABA Tournament to MLB postseason

Adams made his major league debut in 2012, appearing in 27 games. This year he played 108 regular-season games, batting .284 with 17 homers and 51 RBIs.

His role expanded on Sept. 4, when starting first baseman Allen Craig rolled his ankle against Cincinnati.

As a replacement in that game, Adams hit home runs in the 14th and 16th innings of a 5-4 win.

With Craig out, Adams became a regular in the Cardinals’ lineup.

“It stunk that Allen had to get hurt and that’s how I had to play every day,” Adams said. “But I took the opportunity and just ran with it. I worked hard in spring training to get where I am this year. I’m just trusting my abilities.”

Those skills just might land Adams in the World Series.

Not bad for a 25-year-old who got his start in Philipsburg and made a name for himself in the AAABA Tournament.

“That league is good. The Altoona team was really good, and (former manager) Kurt Farabaugh and (current manager) Mel Curtis did a great job of getting everybody in the area to play on that team,” Adams said. “The AAABA Tournament helped me out big time. We played against guys coming in from all over who are really good ballplayers. They use wood bats. It took my game to the next level.”

And what about that walk-off hit against Johnstown in front of the 2007 opening-night crowd?

“That was an awesome experience,” Adams said. “We were young. We came from such a small area and the ballgames don’t get that many fans. Being able to go out there and play (at Point Stadium) was awesome. We drew the night game against Johnstown. That was the first time that I’ve ever been in front of a crowd of more than a couple hundred.”

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