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Amateur City Elite (ACE)

About Amateur City Elite (ACE)

In 2007, the White Sox created the Amateur City Elite (ACE) program designed to provide resources and hope to more than 100 inner city youth each year, kids who might not otherwise be able to keep up with the travel team culture that has permeated today's youth baseball.

ACE's purpose is to support players in Chicago who lack the financial means or family support to otherwise receive quality baseball instruction. Today, the sport has become focused on travel teams and college recruiters and scouts visiting suburban weekend tournaments.

These are hurdles inner-city kids struggle to overcome, since they often cannot afford to participate in such expensive activities.

ACE operates with three clear goals:

  • Identify and develop high-caliber inner-city baseball talent that otherwise might not be able to play at the collegiate and professional levels without proper structure, support and exposure
  • Reverse and correct the trend of reduced participation by African-Americans in baseball
  • Prepare participants to succeed in life far beyond baseball
  1. What Makes ACE Unique
  2. Kroc Center
  3. Player of the Month
  4. Alumni
  5. Features
  6. Play
  7. Support
  8. Contact

What Makes ACE Unique

The program engages Chicago area youth by using baseball as a learning tool. By working with these young men from some of Chicago's most depressed communities and teaching them about hard work, cooperation and dedication, the ACE program helps provide Chicago youth with opportunities to continue their education and pursue collegiate and professional baseball careers.

More importantly, ACE focuses on developing players to succeed off the field. Participants receive academic direction and support to prepare them for success beyond baseball and learn the core values of personal responsibility and accountability.

ACE best comes to life through the faces and stories of its participants.

Consider individuals such as Ronell Coleman and Corey Ray, two former ACE participants who not only earned Division I scholarships, but who also played against one another in the 2014 College World Series for Vanderbilt University and the University of Louisville, respectively. During the summer of 2014, Coleman became the ACE program's first college National Champion. Both often talk about how the program has impacted their baseball prospects, but more importantly and more often they speak about how ACE has helped their life prospects.

Also think about players such as James Davison, who because of the gang problems in his neighborhood didn't leave his home for anything other than baseball or school. ACE provided him with the freedom to be outside in a safe environment and an opportunity for which earned the distinction of being drafted by the Chicago White Sox in the 39th round of the 2014 amateur draft. Davison chose to attend Howard College in Texas.

It is also important to recognize that the efforts of the ACE program have helped reignite interest in baseball among Chicago's African-American community. Six members of the Jackie Robinson West Little League World Series team that won the U.S. Championship - Cameron Bufford, Brandon Green, Tre Hondras, Josh Houston, Ed Howard and Marquis Jackson - also participate on the ACE program's U12 team. The entire Sox organization supported these players and their families in many ways including sponsoring Watch Parties and the parade organized by the City of Chicago to celebrate their national celebrated success.

The fact is, for many Chicago kids, there isn't much to keep the pulse of violence out of their lives, but for some, baseball and the White Sox ACE program can serve not only as a relief from that horrific reality, but also help them succeed in life.


White Sox Field at Kroc Center

The Ray and Joan Kroc Center White Sox Field is home to the White Sox ACE program players, its professional field turf allows easy and enjoyable playability. The field is a replica of the Whites Sox's home field and measures 300 feet down the foul lines, 345feet to right and left center field and a 400 feet centerfield.


ACE Player of the Month

Each month, an ACE "Player of the Month" award is given to athletes who thrive both on the field, in the community and in the classroom.

Players who receive this special recognition are given tickets to a White Sox game and are honored on-field during a special pre-game ceremony.

12U Marquis Jackson
13U Randy Johnson
14U Anthony Herron

12U Brandon Green
13U Kendall Pettis
14U Jordon Rogers

13U Maury Garrett
14U Kyle Salley
15U Ben Collazo
16U Tyler Gordon
17U Raphe Gross

15U Ryan Green
16U Josh Shaw
17U Jalin McMillian


ACE Alumni

2008 Class
Steve Ester   Alcorn State
Steve Florence   Simeon   Alcorn State / McDonnel Truett
Adrian Perez   Clemente   Olivet Nazarene
Kendall Shaw   Kentucky State
Michael Smith   North Arkansas State
Eric Tabb   Grambling State
Dahveed Todd   St Augustine
Troy White   Whitney Young   Northern Illinois
Ryan Williams   North Arkansas State
Troy Williams   Alcorn State

2009 Class
Jonathan Clark   Harlan   Frank Phillips
John Dorsey   Simeon   Alcorn State
Kevin Finney   Frank Phillips
Christian Hickman   Simeon   Southern University / Alcorn State
Anthony Jefferson   Olive Harvey
Ronquis Jefferson   Harlan   Alabama A&M
Nicholas Johnson   Simeon   Alabama A&M
Issac Lewis   Kenwood   Oakton

2010 Class
Charles Aldridge   Simeon   Grambling State
Jamell Blue   Harlan   Texas Southern
Michael Duck   Virginia State
William Feliciano   College of San Mateo
Ronzelle Fort   Harlan   Texas Southern
Kyle Huber   Lane Tech   Concordia
Kendall Radcliffe   Morgan Park   Heartland
Dimitrius Roach   Virginia State

2011 Class
Corey Brown   Harlan   Kentucky State
Quincy Collins   Simeon   Kentucky State
Nick Collins   Rich Central   Purdue North Central
Nick Everett   Kenwood   Kentucky State
Brandon Holmes   Kenwood   Kentucky State
Kyle Johnson   Harlan   Marshaltown
Canance King   Harlan   Kentucky State
Terrell Kitching   Simeon   Triton
Dan Lodolce   Walther Lutheran   Concordia
Jalen Parks   Kenwood   Kentucky State
Quintin Richardson   Simeon   Purdue North Central
Jl Roberts   Harlan   Marshaltown
Dontrell Rush   Harlan   Logan
Jason Scott   Jones   Florida A&M
Benjamin Tabb   Kenwood   Kentucky State

2012 Class
Anthony Beale   Walther Lutheran   North Arkansas
Shane Brown   Simeon   Alcorn
Jabari Brown   De La Salle   Claflin
Ryan Calvin   Rich Central   Ohio State
Shaquille Cockrell   Walther Lutheran   Alcorn State
Brandon Fowler   Rich Central   Aurura
Joshua Galvan   Walther Lutheran   Kaskaskia
Blake Hickman   Simeon   University of Iowa
Devin Pickett   Simeon   University of Iowa
Jeremy Scott   Jones   Jackson State
Jordan Smith   Rich Central   St. Louis Merrimac
Chris Stevens   Walther Lutheran   Kaskaskia
DeJohn Suber   Morgan Park   St. Louis Merrimac

2013 Class
Nolan Bullock   Rich Central   Oakton
Darien Clifton   Simeon   Illinois Central
Christopher Cockle   Crete   Dominican in NY
Matt Cole   Rich Central   Madison Tech
Ronelle Coleman   Simeon   Vanderbilt
Elbert Dunnigan   Simeon   Rust
Robert Fletcher   Simeon   Alcorn
Julian Guerrero   Andrean   Prarie State
Jerry Houston   Mt. Carmel   Oregon
Sanford Hunt   Kenwood   Chicago State
Tyler Johnson   Harlan   Texas Southern
Michael Kendrick   Brother   Kankakee
Jalen Purchase   Rich Central   Claflin
Corey Ray   Simeon   Louisville
Sharold Roach   Simeon   McKendree (football)
Ar Smith   Marion Catholic   Butler (Soccer)
Marcellus Sneed   Morgan Park   Madison Tech
Terrell Stewart   Harlan   Chicago State
Marshawn Taylor   Simeon   Eastern Ill
Richard Velez   Reavis   Rock Valley

2014 Class
Lavar Reed   Morgan Park   Hill Junior College
Diontrell Earls Purdue -North Central Simeon
Chris Bland   Purdue -North Central   Harlan
Adam Kelly   Kenwood   Illinois Central
James Davison   Morgan Park   Howard College
David Calderon   Lincoln Way North   Morehead State
Darius Day   Simeon   Arizona
Angel Figueroa   Bishop Knoll   Blackhawk
Kevin Jones   Portage   Northern Illinois
Anthony Justiniano   Clemente   Wabash Valley
Jamal Martin   Morgan Park   Hill Junior College
Justin Freeman   Rich Central   Southern University
Colton Lopez   Brooks   Beloit College

2015 Class
Jalin McMillan   Simeon   Illinois
Jamary McKinney   Simeon   Chicago State
Torriun Towers   Harlan   Claflin
Jackson Edwards   Hope   Judson University
Nelson Munoz   Mt. Carmel   Grambling State
Lavezz Middleton   Marion Catholic   Bucknell University


ACE Features





Play for ACE

Tryouts generally take place during the first or second weekend in August. The tryout consists of a pro style workout which includes the following:

  • 60 yard dash
  • Defensive throwing and fielding from right field and shortstop
  • Batting practice with a maximum of 10 swings
  • Throwing 15-20 pitches from a mound
  • There is no fee to try out for the ACE program
  • Registration will be done 1 hour prior to start of camp.
  • Bring gear that you would practice or play a game in (hat, cleats, glove, baseball pants, etc.). Balls are provided at the workout. Catchers must use their own catching gear.

Please call the first week in August for exact date, time, and location for the yearly tryouts.

IMPORTANT: Each player must sign a liability waiver to participate. At least one parent or guardian of player must sign this form if player is under the age of 18, in order for player to participate in the tryout.


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Contact Us

Kevin Coe
Director of Youth Baseball Initiatives