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Hope World Baseball Classic will become THE world cup for baseball.

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1 Comment

  1. Glen Long Says:

    Glen Long, Wednesday, 7 December 2005

    “Baseball spoken here”:………….

    It is not really ASL club news but important Baseball news nonetheless.

    The First ever World Baseball Classic is scheduled for March 2006. The Australian Baseball team had great success winning a Silver Medal and media coverage from the Athens Olympics, sadly though, Baseball is due to be dropped from future Olympics after Beijing China 2008. There has been Baseball World Cups held for many years, mostly with Nations fielding their best amateur players and a sprinkling of Pro Major and Minor league players with the USA team made up of good college players and more recently Minor League Players.

    The March 2006 World Baseball Classic will be the first time ever that the Worlds best Pro Baseball players suit up for their home country. A lot of USA sports writers think that in years to come this may surpass the World Series as the ultimate Baseball event Worldwide. For those of you not aware, the World Series is a USA centric event for just Pro USA teams at the end of their season.

    Australia is one of only 16 Nations that will participate in the first ever World Baseball Classic. The Aussie team will be filled with Pro Aussie players who have played at the highest Pro Levels in the USA and Japan as well as the best players playing in Australia this 2005/06 summer for their State teams.

    60 players will be selected for the initial Aussie squad in January 2006 to be fine tuned to a final squad of 30 for the WBC tournament in March 2006. Out of the final 30 Players selected, at least 13 must be Pitchers and 3 must be Catchers. The Designated Hitter (DH) Rule will apply in all games ( DH means that a tenth player may bat for the Pitcher.)

    The WBC will be held over 18 Days in March 2006 in 3 Countries ( Tokyo Japan, USA, San Juan Puerto Rico ) and 4 cities in the USA ( Orlando Florida, Anaheim California, Phoenix Arizona and the Finals in San Diego California )

    Australia’s other 3 Pool Teams to play are Italy, Dominican Republic and Venezuela, all 3 Aussie opponents are very strong Baseball teams with many Pro Baseball players. The top 2 from each of 4 Pools to go through to the quarter finals after the 3 game round robin Pool play.

    For more details on the event, click on the links below:

    World Baseball Classic

    World Baseball Classic Australian Team

    ——————————————————————————–

    What are Australias’ Chances in the first ever WBC?

    Lets just come to terms with the fact first that for Australia to even make the top 16 Nations for this tournament is a fantastic effort. Baseball is still a low profile sport in Australia but many dedicated Players, coaches and officials help to build Baseball year after year Nationally and in each State. The World Baseball Classic can only help build Baseball media profile in Australia and indeed worldwide.

    Realistically Australia has about a 300 to 1 chance of winning it. This Competition will be much harder than the Athens Olympics but if you are a patriotic Aussie, love your Baseball and have a few dollars to bet you might even get 500-1 odds on the Aussies taking it all. If Australia made it through to the second Round of top 8 teams for the quarter finals, it would be a more supreme effort than winning the Silver Medal at the Olympics.

    This World Baseball Classic will be a much higher level of Baseball than the Athens Olympics. Australia has many talented players but at this level they may lack the overall Pitching depth however. In saying that the Aussie team will have one positive that some other high profile countries do not and that is they are use to playing together as a National team more and the on-field Manager Jon Deeble has a lot of Pro / Olympics Baseball experience and respect from the Aussie team players.

    As all 16 Nations teams are far from finalised as of early January 2006, it’s hard to know each teams strengths just yet.

    I will give it a shot though:

    Top four Teams to Win the WBC: 1: Dominican Republic / 2: USA / 3: Japan / 4: Venezuela

    Other four Teams to make the quarter finals: 5: Cuba / 6: Puerto Rico / 7: Chinese Taipei (Taiwan) / 8: Korea

    Four Dark Horse Teams to make the quarter finals: 9: Mexico / 10: Panama / 11: Canada / 12: Australia

    Bottom Four Teams: 13: Italy / 14: China / 15: Netherlands / 16: South Africa

    ——————————————————————————–

    Internet Video Information about the World Baseball Classic as below:

    WORLD Baseball Classic
    March 2006

    “Baseball spoken here” Broadband long Video

    “Baseball spoken here” Lo_Res short Video

    ——————————————————————————–

    Footnotes:
    Apart from Soccer, Baseball is the most widely played sport in the World today.
    With the current success of the Aussie Socceroo team making the next World Cup it is relevant to note that Baseball has never truly been shown on the world stage with the best players from each country competing until the WBC in March 2006. The game of Baseball pre-dates Cricket in a Professional and highly organised sense. Mostly concentrated in the USA and Japan the game has not fully developed in other nations professionally. For many reasons because of small thinking and business ownership preservation the game of Baseball has never been fully promoted Internationally to it’s full potential.

    The first 2006 World Baseball Classic will change the world view of Baseball forever.

    The next WBC is scheduled for 2009 then once every 4 years after that. The success of the first tournament may change it to a bi-annual or annual event based on media and worldwide interest.

    For Aussies is an interesting Baseball fact:
    We are primarily a nation of cricket lovers, yet the largest spectator crowd ever ( 114,000 ) for a Baseball game worldwide was held in Melbourne Australia during the 1956 Olympics. An exhibition match of USA V Australia….
    USA 11 beat Australia 5
    ( Please note that the USA team did not include their best Professional players at the time and that the players for the Australian team had never played together before.)

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