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World Baseball Classic Game Thread


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#1 Rasputin


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 11:43 AM

A lot of people hate it.

I love it.

It's getting bigger.

Linky dinky do

World Baseball Classic Inc. announced Wednesday the introduction of a play-in round to the 2013 installation of the World Baseball Classic that will allow 12 new countries to compete for the first time. The new round will bring in 16 teams divided into four pools, and the winner of each pool will advance to play in the World Baseball Classic.



Four teams -- Canada, Chinese Taipei, Panama and South Africa -- will compete in the play-in round after not winning a game in the 2009 World Baseball Classic. New participants will include France, Spain, Great Britain, Germany, and New Zealand in addition to participants from the Americas: Colombia, Nicaragua and Brazil.

ages)
Israel, which had a nascent professional baseball league that folded, will also be among the first-time participants, as will Thailand, the Czech Republic and the Philippines.



The winners of the qualifying rounds, which will be held in Fall 2012, will advance to the tournament in March of 2013, where they'll join the 12 countries -- Australia, China, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, the Netherlands, Puerto Rico, United States and Venezuela -- that receive automatic bids based on their performance in the '09 tournament.



I think there are two or three interesting things here.

One, they managed to expand the scope of the thing without adding any days to the length of the intersection with MLB spring training which, I think, is good.

What kind of TV will they have for this? Any? MLBN? ESPN12?

Edited by Rasputin, 12 March 2013 - 09:35 PM.


#2 Jnai


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 11:50 AM

We only get to see him once every few years at the World Baseball Classic, so, I'm really excited to see Daisuke Matsuzaka pitch again.

#3 Toe Nash

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Posted 01 June 2011 - 12:18 PM

I'm fine with this, but does the winner of the play-in round have any chance of losing by less than 15 runs when they face a real team?

#4 trekfan55


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 12:46 PM

The play in round is in the Fall of 2012, so if a country has a major league player they cannot use him?

Imagine Phillies fans if Panama takes away their starting catcher for the play in round (and don't get me started on Mariano Rivera). It may be only one, but that player could make a difference.

#5 CoolPapaBellhorn

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Posted 01 June 2011 - 03:28 PM

The play in round is in the Fall of 2012, so if a country has a major league player they cannot use him?

Imagine Phillies fans if Panama takes away their starting catcher for the play in round (and don't get me started on Mariano Rivera). It may be only one, but that player could make a difference.


There is zero chance that Team Bud puts this on opposite the MLB playoffs - it would have to be in November. Assuming that's the case, I love it for the same reason I loved the WBC in '06 and '09: more baseball. I do wish they'd have a single elimination tournament with the field of 16, but hopefully they're still considering tweaking that.

#6 bankshot1


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 04:05 PM

We only get to see him once every few years at the World Baseball Classic, so, I'm really excited to see Daisuke Matsuzaka pitch again.


But lets hope team Team Japan uses him wisely, for no more than the lesser of 9 innings or 150 pitchs per start.

#7 Fred not Lynn


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 04:27 PM

I'm fine with this, but does the winner of the play-in round have any chance of losing by less than 15 runs when they face a real team?

If a team in the play-in round happened to feature multiple MVP and ROY type players, they may do OK. Of course, a team with those sorts of players should never have lost to 6-2 to Italy at HOME in the last WBC.

#8 jnlevetoncnmt

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Posted 01 June 2011 - 04:38 PM

I remember that game where Adam Stern and Team Canada beat us. I thought he was going to be a good ML outfielder, maybe he was on some special Canadian diet that day.

#9 Spacemans Bong


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 05:21 PM

I was going to be upset, because New Zealand losing 30-0 to the USA does nobody any good, but if they are instituting qualifying then I'm all for it.

I'll be interested in finding out whether this will help out baseball in the UK. Having a World Cup-style competition the UK can qualify for might get baseball some extra funding, funding that would have been used for the Olympics. Voting out baseball severely damaged the sport here, as lots of clubs folded and players moved abroad.

#10 TheYellowDart5


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 07:06 PM

Awesome, adding a bunch of teams who are absolutely terrible. That'll definitely make this more watchable.

#11 SumnerH


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 11:02 PM

Awesome, adding a bunch of teams who are absolutely terrible. That'll definitely make this more watchable.

I actually think it will. I have more fun watching the Netherlands and other developing teams in the WBC than I do seeing the US or Cuba playing Japan or the Dominican. MLB shows me the best, the WBC is an opportunity to see developing players.

#12 Rasputin


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Posted 01 June 2011 - 11:56 PM

I actually think it will. I have more fun watching the Netherlands and other developing teams in the WBC than I do seeing the US or Cuba playing Japan or the Dominican. MLB shows me the best, the WBC is an opportunity to see developing players.


I'm pretty sure the Netherlands has given me my best baseball memory since 2007.

#13 Spacemans Bong


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Posted 02 June 2011 - 06:56 AM

Awesome, adding a bunch of teams who are absolutely terrible. That'll definitely make this more watchable.

Read the article, they're adding a qualifying process. If anything it will make the minnows more watchable because they'll actually have to beat out some teams to get in.

#14 Fred not Lynn


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Posted 02 June 2011 - 11:54 AM

I hope that whatever fall qualifying group Canada is in is hosted at Rogers Centre. Last time out they got pretty good attendance when Canada played (and pretty much zero for anyone else). I'd think Canada's big name position players would turn out (Votto, Bay, Morneau, Martin - maybe Lawrie by then)and be a pretty good draw. Actually playing in the play in could generate a little more engagement in the main WBC in Canada (assuming Canada qualifies), and result in a better prepared team.

Edited by Fred not Lynn, 02 June 2011 - 11:56 AM.


#15 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 05:54 PM

In 30 years when the WBC is baseball's premier event and the third biggest sporting event int the world, we're going to look back on this thread with amazement that so little discussion was generated. Alternatively, if in 30 years Americans still don't give a shit about this, then I'm going to look back with disgust at the fact that MLB/WBC seemingly couldn't be bothered to even try to promote the announcement of the 12 additional teams, as well as the locations and dates of the qualifying rounds.

There will be four pools of four teams playing in a double elimination format. The winners of the pools will advance to the main event in March:

Regensburg, Germany
Germany
Canada
Great Britain
Czech Republic

Jupiter, FL
South Africa
Israel
France
Spain

New Taipai City, Taiwan
Taiwan
Phillipinnes
Thailand
New Zealand

Panama City, Panama
Panama
Nicaragua
Colombia
Brazil

Holy shit that's a group of death in Panama City. Depending on how many American Jews suit up for Israel, you could argue that the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th best teams in the entire qualifying tournament are all battling for one spot in Panama City. The WBC also isn't making it easy for the best team, Canada. Not only do they have to play on another continent, but the Regensburg pool is being played in September for some reason, meaning they won't be able to field their best roster. The rest of the pools, I believe, are being played in November.

Of course we have no idea why these decisions were made, because MLB/WBC hasn't seen fit tell anyone about these decisions in the first place. Good luck trying to find any news about this. If you want more info I've found that this is generally the best source.


Edit: you really should check out that Baseball Fever link. Where else will you ever read anything like this:

With all the excitement over last week's World Baseball qualifiers news, the West Asian Baseball Cup (also called the Southwest Asia Baseball Cup) hasn't been getting much attention here. This news report from Pakistan's English-language Dawn newspaper sets the scene:




PBF announces team for West Asian Baseball Cup
Our Sports Reporter | Sports | From the Newspaper
22nd March, 2012

The team was selected from the 32 probables who were being trained by Korean coach Hwang Hoon Dong since March 1 at the Iqbal Stadium. -Photo by APP

LAHORE: The Pakistan Baseball Federation has announced an 18-member team for the 10th West Asian Baseball Cup to be held here at the Punjab Stadium from March 23 to 28.

Meanwhile, the Iran team reached Lahore on Wednesday to take part in the event in which Sri Lanka and Afghanistan are also taking part.

The team was selected from the 32 probables who were being trained by Korean coach Hwang Hoon Dong since March 1 at the Iqbal Stadium here.

Catcher Imtiaz Ali has been named as captain while former international baseball players Arif Ali and Nisar Ahmad will be working with Dong as his assistants.

The team has five pitchers namely Ihsanullah, Mohammad Usman, Mohammad Asif, Israr Ahmed, Tauseef Ahmed.

The batters are Arshad Ali Khan, Nasir Nadeem Butt, Arslan Jamshed, Mussadiq Hanif, Mohammad Iftikhar, Mohammad Arif, Mohammad Usman, Mohammad Farooq Khan, Mohammad Asif Mushtaq, Imtiaz Ali and Zawar. Two catchers will
be Umair Bhatti and Arif Hussain.

Meanwhile, the PFB has made changes in the draws of the event Sri Lanka’s arrival was delayed.

Earlier, Pakistan were to face Sri Lanka in the opener. But now Iran will be playing instead Pakistan in the opening match on March 23 with Sri Lanka and Afghanistan scheduled to reach Lahore late on Thursday night.

Revised draws:
March 23: Pakistan v Iran; March 24: Pakistan v Afghanistan; March 25: Sri Lanka v Iran; March 26: Sri Lanka v Afghanistan; March 27: Afghanistan v Iran; March 28: Pakistan v Sri Lanka.


As followers of international baseball would expect, Pakistan is the class of the tournament. And, sure enough, it's manhandled the competition so far, trouncing Iran in the opening game 11-0, and putting on a clinic against Afghanistan in an 18-0 win.

The only team likely to come close to matching up against Pakistan is Sri Lanka, which placed second behind the Paks at last year's SAARC Baseball Cub--losing the finals by a not-lopsided 8-2.

Should be interesting to see how Pakistan and Sri Lanka square up when they meet on Wednesday.


Edited by Orel Miraculous, 06 April 2012 - 06:02 PM.


#16 Cuzittt


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Posted 07 April 2012 - 09:07 AM

The WBC also isn't making it easy for the best team, Canada. Not only do they have to play on another continent, but the Regensburg pool is being played in September for some reason, meaning they won't be able to field their best roster. The rest of the pools, I believe, are being played in November.

Of course we have no idea why these decisions were made, because MLB/WBC hasn't seen fit tell anyone about these decisions in the first place. Good luck trying to find any news about this. If you want more info I've found that this is generally the best source.


Do you really need to have MLB tell you why the qualifying in Germany will not be in November? How about climate.

Average temp in Regensburg in November - 37 degrees. In September it is 20 degrees warmer.

In Panama... it's always 80ish.

In Jupiter, it is upper 80s in September and lower 80s in November.

In Taipei, it is in the mid 80s in September and in the 70s in November.

I suppose they could play all the matchups in September... but the reason the regional in Europe is being done in September is fairly obvious.

#17 santadevil

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 11:54 AM

Do you really need to have MLB tell you why the qualifying in Germany will not be in November? How about climate.

Average temp in Regensburg in November - 37 degrees. In September it is 20 degrees warmer.

In Panama... it's always 80ish.

In Jupiter, it is upper 80s in September and lower 80s in November.

In Taipei, it is in the mid 80s in September and in the 70s in November.

I suppose they could play all the matchups in September... but the reason the regional in Europe is being done in September is fairly obvious.


I think they could keep the Rogers Centre at a fairly nice 72 degrees in November if they wanted.
But that would mean 3 other teams travelling to Canada, rather than one team travelling to Europe.

#18 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 01:03 PM

Do you really need to have MLB tell you why the qualifying in Germany will not be in November? How about climate.

Average temp in Regensburg in November - 37 degrees. In September it is 20 degrees warmer.

In Panama... it's always 80ish.

In Jupiter, it is upper 80s in September and lower 80s in November.

In Taipei, it is in the mid 80s in September and in the 70s in November.

I suppose they could play all the matchups in September... but the reason the regional in Europe is being done in September is fairly obvious.


Yeah, I guess what I really meant was what Santadevil said. There are plenty of places they could've played where the weather in November wouldn't be an issue. If they want to showcase the game in Northern Europe, that's fine, its certainly important for the future growth of the game. But if they do that then they shouldn't make Canada play there, when they have more players signed with MLB organizations than any other qualifying country.

#19 Infield Infidel


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Posted 09 April 2012 - 11:08 PM

Yeah, they could have switched Canada and Israel and no one would say anything.

#20 trekfan55


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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:16 PM

Panama is spending about 1.5MM dollars to upgrade Rod Carew Stadium (the National Baseball Stadium) as "requested" by MLB. This is on top of a 5MM overhaul of several other staidiums for the Baseball World Cup last year.

Read it in the paper today, but cannot find the link to the article online.

#21 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:20 PM

Panama is spending about 1.5MM dollars to upgrade Rod Carew Stadium (the National Baseball Stadium) as "requested" by MLB. This is on top of a 5MM overhaul of several other staidiums for the Baseball World Cup last year.

Read it in the paper today, but cannot find the link to the article online.


IIRC, another major motivating factor behind the renovations is that they're eager for their domestic league to get an invite to the Caribbean Series (Nicaragua is also stepping up their efforts there too, I believe)

#22 trekfan55


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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:30 PM

IIRC, another major motivating factor behind the renovations is that they're eager for their domestic league to get an invite to the Caribbean Series (Nicaragua is also stepping up their efforts there too, I believe)


Maybe, but the news article did not mention this. Basically it's renewing the grass, getting a better drainage system, adding more seats, and adding a new video screen. I'm guessing that the invite to the Caribbean Series might be a nice bonus too.

#23 jose melendez


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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:37 PM

Is Uganda going to reperesnt Africa?

#24 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 14 April 2012 - 10:38 AM

As expected, team Israel is unlikely to have very many actual Israelis on the team:

Former major leaguers Brad Ausmus, Shawn Green and Gabe Kapler have expressed interest in playing or coaching for Israel, the IAB noted. Two pitchers with Bay Area roots — Scott Feldman of Burlingame (Texas Rangers) and Aaron Poreda of Moraga (Double-A in the Pittsburgh Pirates organization) — are other possibilities.

“The first efforts will be toward major league Jewish players, and then the rosters will fill in from there,” an IBA spokesman said in an email.


Link

I wasn't a fan of the way the Italian team has stocked its roster with Americans and I don't like this either. If one of the goals of the WBC is to grow the game in places like Israel, then building an Israeli team full of Americans isn't the way to do it. On the other hand, this gives Ozzie Guillen another chance to insult an influential bloc of Florida voters. In 2006 he was highly critical of A-Rod and Nomar for considering playing for the DR and Mexico, respectively, going so far as to say that A-Rod was full of shit and not a real Dominican. A-Rod at least had lived in the Dominican for part of his childhood. What would he say about Shawn Green, who didn't even have a bar mitzvah, playing for Israel?

#25 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 07:53 AM

For those of you who care (a good 2-3 people at least!) the first WBC qualifying games kick off tomorrow. The pool in Jupiter, FL (Israel, South Africa, Spain, France) runs from Wednesday to Sunday, the Pool in Regensburg, Germany (Canada, Germany, Great Britain, and the Czech Republic) runs from Thursday to Monday. The Panama and Taiwan pools don't play until November.

You can find information about the games here. What you can't find on the official website, is any broadcast information or even team rosters, because, as we all know, the best way to spread baseball around the world is to shroud the global championship in total secrecy.

#26 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 September 2012 - 08:07 AM

As expected, team Israel is unlikely to have very many actual Israelis on the team:

Former major leaguers Brad Ausmus, Shawn Green and Gabe Kapler have expressed interest in playing or coaching for Israel,



If one of the goals of the WBC is to grow the game in places like Israel, then building an Israeli team full of Americans isn't the way to do it.


Kapler and Green are indeed playing for the Hebrews. They haven't seen MLB action since 2010 and 2007 respectively.

#27 Spacemans Bong


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Posted 18 September 2012 - 10:16 AM

At least the paisans and the nice Jewish boys are eligible for citizenship. That they aren't obliged to is pretty lame, it's not like your average major leaguer can't pay for a lawyer to make it happen for them, and as far as I know nobody's opening themselves up to tax or military obligations if they did.

The British team, on the other hand, is playing a bunch of players on the basis that their parents or grandparents were born as British subjects or something. I mean, fuck the heck? Antoan Richardson is from the Bahamas.

#28 soxhop411


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Posted 18 September 2012 - 10:16 AM

If Israel advances, the team hopes to entice more Jewish major leaguers for the tournament in March. Kevin Youkilis already has agreed to play for Team Israel in the spring. Ian Kinsler, Ike Davis, and Ryan Braun are being queried, and several current Red Sox players have expressed interest.


In the Red Sox clubhouse there is plenty of enthusiasm.
“There’s more guys than you would think,” says catcher Ryan Lavarnway. “I definitely expressed interest in playing for them. I’ll have to talk to [general manager] Ben [Cherington] because it’s right before spring training. I think it’d be great.”
Outfielder Ryan Kalish would love to play for Team Israel. “If they want me to play, I’m there,” he says.
Pitcher Craig Breslow will wait and see if the team qualifies.


http://www.bostonglo...g1bL/story.html

Edited by soxhop411, 18 September 2012 - 10:17 AM.


#29 Lose Remerswaal


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Posted 18 September 2012 - 12:24 PM

Kapler and Green are indeed playing for the Hebrews. They haven't seen MLB action since 2010 and 2007 respectively.

Per the Globe article, Kapler is injured and will be coaching. Mark Loretta is also coaching the team.

#30 Spacemans Bong


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Posted 18 September 2012 - 05:03 PM

Wait, Ryan Kalish is Jewish?

Were Jews the new market inefficiency?

#31 DeJesus Built My Hotrod


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Posted 19 September 2012 - 12:05 AM

It will be interesting to see how Israel does, especially if they make the cut and the MLB MOTs join up.

Flynn, you should know that a homey by the name of Charlie Cutler is playing for the Israeli team. He is a product of Rooftop, Lowell and Cal. He is now a back-up catcher for the Pirates AA affiliate, The Altoona Curve. I hope they make it if only because he'll get to play for them in front a "home" crowd at AT&T next spring.

#32 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 05:06 PM

According to worldbaseballclassic.com, tonight's game will be live streamed, presumably for free. Shawn Green's Sons of (Peter) Abraham vs. Gift Ngoepe's Spring(training)boks.

#33 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 09:20 PM

At least the paisans and the nice Jewish boys are eligible for citizenship. That they aren't obliged to is pretty lame, it's not like your average major leaguer can't pay for a lawyer to make it happen for them, and as far as I know nobody's opening themselves up to tax or military obligations if they did.

The British team, on the other hand, is playing a bunch of players on the basis that their parents or grandparents were born as British subjects or something. I mean, fuck the heck? Antoan Richardson is from the Bahamas.


Honestly I can't figure out which is worse. The Brits letting anyone whose ever had an ancestor in the empire play is pretty terrible, but at least about half the team is made up of legitimate British players who've been playing internationally for Great Britain for a while. The Israeli team has TWO actual Israelis on the team. It's absurd to even call it an Israeli team, it's an American JV team.

The Italians actually piss me off the most though. They have a strong domestic league and there are Italian-born players in both MLB and NPB right now. They're perfectly capable of putting together a respectable team without Chris Freakin Denorfia.

I'm rooting against all of them.

Edited by Orel Miraculous, 19 September 2012 - 09:21 PM.


#34 DeJesus Built My Hotrod


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Posted 19 September 2012 - 09:52 PM

Israel 7, South Africa 3. Padres AA farmhand, 1B Nate Freiman hit two homers and Bonger's homey Charlie Cutler went 2-3 with 3 runs batted in as the Hebrews held the Springboks scoreless until the 9th. I believe Israel plays the loser of tomorrow night's Spain/France game on Friday while South Africa will get the winner.

#35 ForceAtHome

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 12:30 AM

Israel 7, South Africa 3. Padres AA farmhand, 1B Nate Freiman hit two homers and Bonger's homey Charlie Cutler went 2-3 with 3 runs batted in as the Hebrews held the Springboks scoreless until the 9th. I believe Israel plays the loser of tomorrow night's Spain/France game on Friday while South Africa will get the winner.


Freiman is a local boy from Massachusetts. Played for Wellesley HS and Orleans in the Cape League.

#36 Spacemans Bong


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Posted 20 September 2012 - 11:30 AM

It will be interesting to see how Israel does, especially if they make the cut and the MLB MOTs join up.

Flynn, you should know that a homey by the name of Charlie Cutler is playing for the Israeli team. He is a product of Rooftop, Lowell and Cal. He is now a back-up catcher for the Pirates AA affiliate, The Altoona Curve. I hope they make it if only because he'll get to play for them in front a "home" crowd at AT&T next spring.


I don't know him personally but I know of him and we do have mutual friends.

All native San Franciscans know each other. It's like a law.

#37 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 12:12 PM

Canada v. Great Britain on now, avaiable for free on MLB.TV. Looks like a good crowd in Regensburg, might be a Fenway sellout (a small stadium, obviously, but its great to see).

This Canadian side is kind of a team of tragic heroes. For most of them, this qualifier is is all they'll suit up for, because the best Canadian players in the world are still playing for their MLB teams right now. If this Canadian team loses the qualifier, the players will go home in shame and be done with the tournament. If they win the qualifier, they'll go home in triumph, but will still be done with the tournament, as Joey Votto and Brett Lawrie will take their roster spots in March.

Edited by Orel Miraculous, 20 September 2012 - 12:32 PM.


#38 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 06:56 PM

Canada routed Great Britain 11-1. Like South Africa against Israel the night before, the Brits held on hung in there for a while until the bullpen fell apart against a Canadian team that has MLB experience.

I'll take away two things from this game though, neither one of which have anything to do with the play on the field. First, the crowd gave a great ovation when GB's ninth hitter came up to the plate. I was confused at first, but it turns out it was a guy named Richard Klijn, who's a native-born Englishman and the second baseman for Legionare Regensberg. He was playing in his club's home ballpark, and was cheered by a fan base that clearly knows and appreciates the game. Second, the attendance was 3704. That's double the attendance in Jupiter Florida last night, on a 56 degree night in Germany, for a game between two non-German teams. For a guy like me who watches the World Cup every four years and gets jealous that there isn't an equivalent baseball experience, this stuff was great.

Edited by Orel Miraculous, 20 September 2012 - 06:57 PM.


#39 DeJesus Built My Hotrod


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Posted 22 September 2012 - 11:17 AM

Jews 4, Espana 2 yesterday so they are in. Freiman goes deep again too. Queue the Braun, Youks, Kinsler et al watch...


South Africa tries to get their first win, ever, against France today.

Edited by DeJesus Built My Hotrod, 22 September 2012 - 11:18 AM.


#40 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 22 September 2012 - 12:49 PM

Jews 4, Espana 2 yesterday so they are in. Freiman goes deep again too. Queue the Braun, Youks, Kinsler et al watch...


Not yet, its a modified double elimination pool. The loser of France-South Africa gets knocked out, the winner goes on to play Spain. Then the loser of that gets knocked out, the winner goes on to play Israel. Winner of that game goes to the Classic.

The Canada v. Germany winners bracket match-up is live right now from Regensburg. Ron Gardenhire's kid is on Germany but, other than him, its mostly a homegrown team, including Twins prospect Max Kepler, a toolsy 6 ft. 4 in. centerfielder.

Edit: should also mention Germany's cleanup hitter Donald Lutz. Born in America but spent his entire childhood in Germany. He didn't start playing baseball until he was 15, then was signed out of the Bundesliga by the Reds when he was 19. Hit 17 homeruns in 63 games at A+ this season but struggled when he was promoted to AA.

Edited by Orel Miraculous, 22 September 2012 - 01:11 PM.


#41 DeJesus Built My Hotrod


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Posted 22 September 2012 - 03:22 PM

Not yet, its a modified double elimination pool. The loser of France-South Africa gets knocked out, the winner goes on to play Spain. Then the loser of that gets knocked out, the winner goes on to play Israel. Winner of that game goes to the Classic.

The Canada v. Germany winners bracket match-up is live right now from Regensburg. Ron Gardenhire's kid is on Germany but, other than him, its mostly a homegrown team, including Twins prospect Max Kepler, a toolsy 6 ft. 4 in. centerfielder.

Edit: should also mention Germany's cleanup hitter Donald Lutz. Born in America but spent his entire childhood in Germany. He didn't start playing baseball until he was 15, then was signed out of the Bundesliga by the Reds when he was 19. Hit 17 homeruns in 63 games at A+ this season but struggled when he was promoted to AA.


Ah, thank you for the clarification.

#42 johnnyfromspain

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 11:17 AM

Last night Team Spain became the first team to qualify from one of the four pools. This is probably the most important milestone ever reached by Spanish baseball, which historically is behind Italy and Holland in European baseball. Those who are involved in Spanish baseball hope this success will help to promote baseball in this country of avid soccer and basketball fans.
So far, the 2013 will have three European representatives: Italy, Holland and Spain (gold, silver and bronze in the European championship held just last week in Holland). This evening, Germany will have the chance to gain a berth against Canada. Not an easy task at all. May the best team win.

#43 Lose Remerswaal


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Posted 24 September 2012 - 12:59 PM

So the Jews get screwed.

#44 Orel Miraculous

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 05:46 PM

Those who are involved in Spanish baseball hope this success will help to promote baseball in this country of avid soccer and basketball fans.


I'd love for this to be the case but, considering that there was only one actual Spaniard on the team (the rest were Latin players who had a Spanish parent or grandparent), I see this doing as much for baseball in Spain as the 1950 US World Cup did for soccer in America (which is to say, jack shit). Developing youth leagues and getting players signed to MLB clubs is what the Spanish baseball establishment should be focusing on.

#45 DeJesus Built My Hotrod


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Posted 24 September 2012 - 06:27 PM

So the Jews get screwed.


Sorry for the confusion on this and thank you to Orel for the clarification. Engel Beltre is going to the WBC

#46 Spacemans Bong


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Posted 26 September 2012 - 12:10 PM

I'd love for this to be the case but, considering that there was only one actual Spaniard on the team (the rest were Latin players who had a Spanish parent or grandparent), I see this doing as much for baseball in Spain as the 1950 US World Cup did for soccer in America (which is to say, jack shit). Developing youth leagues and getting players signed to MLB clubs is what the Spanish baseball establishment should be focusing on.


One thing in Spain's favor is the recent immigration from Latin America (though I don't know how many are still there given Spain's economic catastrophe). It would be a big deal for European baseball if all those sons of Cubans, Dominicans and Venezuelans don't forget what a baseball looks like. Just retaining the demo alone would probably put Spain in Italy's class and not far behind Holland.

Edited by Spacemans Bong, 26 September 2012 - 12:11 PM.


#47 johnnyfromspain

  • 19 posts

Posted 26 September 2012 - 03:24 PM

I'd love for this to be the case but, considering that there was only one actual Spaniard on the team (the rest were Latin players who had a Spanish parent or grandparent), I see this doing as much for baseball in Spain as the 1950 US World Cup did for soccer in America (which is to say, jack shit). Developing youth leagues and getting players signed to MLB clubs is what the Spanish baseball establishment should be focusing on.

And who says it is not?
In the last three years, almost a dozen young Spaniards have been signed by MLB franchises such as the Mariners, Twins, Braves and Padres. Fifteen of the players on the Spanish WBC have a Spanish passport, not just Spanish heritage. Over a third of the players on the roster play on Spanish clubs in the Spanish "División de Honor".
Perhaps you are right and, unfortunately, the participation in the 2013 WBC has an ephemeral effect upon Spanish baseball. I hope otherwise. I believe Spanish baseball will get coverage from the press and I am sure most of the revenue obtained from participating in this tournament will be funneled into the Spanish baseball academies, of which there are four.
As most Red Sox fans, I am an optimist, a dreamer, so I prefer to believe that this success will do for Spanish baseball what Severiano Ballesteros did for the development of golf or what Manolo Santana and Manolo Orantes did for tennis in our country. Before these individuals, golf and tennis were great unknowns in Spain, now we have become perennial favourites to win the Davis Cup and, with the rest of European golfers, also the Ryder Cup.

#48 Orel Miraculous

  • 1,561 posts

Posted 26 September 2012 - 04:08 PM

As most Red Sox fans, I am an optimist, a dreamer, so I prefer to believe that this success will do for Spanish baseball what Severiano Ballesteros did for the development of golf or what Manolo Santana and Manolo Orantes did for tennis in our country. Before these individuals, golf and tennis were great unknowns in Spain, now we have become perennial favourites to win the Davis Cup and, with the rest of European golfers, also the Ryder Cup.


You would certainly know more about the situation than I do, but if Severiano Ballesteros were actually from Argentina but he established a part-time home in Spain purely because he wanted to compete in the Ryder Cup, would Spaniards really care about him? Has this Spanish team garnered any attention from the Spanish media at all? I want baseball to succeed in Spain as much as anyone, I just think that when a national team uses a team of loosely-connected foreigners in international competitions, it doesn't do much if anything to promote the sport domestically. And while 15 of the players on this Spanish team may hold passports, only one of them lists a Spanish hometown.

#49 Orel Miraculous

  • 1,561 posts

Posted 26 September 2012 - 04:35 PM

In other news, the WBC held a press conference yesterday and announced the venues and 3/4 of each pool for March:

Round 1
Pool A, Fukuoka, Japan
-Japan
-Cuba
-China
-TBD

Pool B, Taichung, Taiwan
-Korea
-Australia
-Netherlands
-TBD

Pool C, San Juan, Puerto Rico
-Puerto Rico
-Venezuela
-Dominican Republic
-TBD

Pool D, Phoenix
-USA
-Mexico
-Italy
-TBD

Round 2 will be held in Tokyo and Miami, with the Semis and Final held in San Fran (as previously announced).

We know Canada and Spain are 2 of the TBD teams right now. The other 2 will come from the November qualifiers, one of which is being held in New Tapai City between Taiwan, the Philippines, New Zealand, and Thailand (Taiwan the huge favorite there, though it would be hilarious if they lose and Taiwan hosts a first round pool without the national team), the other of which will be held in Panama City between Panama, Nicaragua, Columbia, and Brazil (Panama the favorite, but it could easily be any of the Caribbean countries).

Sizing up the competition, Pool C looks like the Group of Death right now, though that could change based on where they stick Canada. Taiwan, should they win, will obviously be put in Pool B, which will easily be the weakest pool. The obvious spot for Canada is Pool D, which could arguably make that pool stronger than Pool C, because if Canada gets Votto, Morneau, Lawrie, and Dempster, then they're a stronger team than Puerto Rico. My guess is Taiwan to Pool B after they dominate the qualifier, Canada to Pool D, Spain to Pool C, and TBD Latin American team to Pool A.

#50 Djiraan Iraassi


  • ngel de la muerte


  • 22 posts

Posted 26 September 2012 - 07:49 PM

And who says it is not?
...


First of all, I'm absolutely astonished to find a fellow Spaniard in this board.

Second, baseball is a team sport, unlike tennis or golf. The "only" thing you need for an individual sport to become popular is for a phenom to arise somewhere (see Federer, Roger, for example, or the ones you proposed). It's already kind of amazing that Spain is going to play on the WBC, but chances of the Spanish team winning it all are worse than me jumping through the window and spontaneously learning how to fly. If Spain won the WBC maybe baseball would become more popular, but the only thing that's going to happen is that the only two people in Spain who follow baseball (i.e. you and me) will have a great time watching their national team on TV (via internet streaming, no doubt) this spring.

On the subject of media coverage, though, I've found this article on Marca.com (Spain's leading sports website):
http://www.marca.com...5c&t=1348704883
It's not much, and it's pretty obvious it was written in the Americas, but it's more than I was expecting... Who knows? Maybe will get TV coverage or something. THAT could be huge...

One thing in Spain's favor is the recent immigration from Latin America (though I don't know how many are still there given Spain's economic catastrophe). It would be a big deal for European baseball if all those sons of Cubans, Dominicans and Venezuelans don't forget what a baseball looks like. Just retaining the demo alone would probably put Spain in Italy's class and not far behind Holland.


I don't know what kind of information you have on our catastrophic situation (unintented rhyming) but, while the economy in Spain has certainly taken a hit and the unemployment rate has increased, the standard of living here is still quite high. Immigration has slowed down (no doubt) and will stay slow for a while (no jobs here at the moment), but it's not like flights to South America are collapsed with people trying to get out of here.

Besides, as far as I (and Wikipedia) know, immigrants from South America have come primarily from Ecuador and Colombia, with Bolivia and the Dominican Republic far behind, so unless baseball is really popular in those two countries (I think is somewhat popular in Colombia, am I right?) it's not going to help a lot.

PS: My cousin recently got himself a Dominican girlfriend (of the bodacious sort, no less) and I spent some time talking about baseball with her. That's only the second time I've talked about baseball with anyone in my 30-something years of life. So, yeah, not really popular here.