Archive for the ‘Italy’ Category

2009 World Baseball Classic to feature same 16 teams

After further discussion, the 16-team field is set for the second World Baseball Classic, which is scheduled for March of next year. Though it is exactly the same as the inaugural edition in 2006, it may be the last time the governing bodies of the tournament restrict the competition to that few teams.

Under consideration for 2013 is an expansion of the field to 24 countries and territories with qualifying rounds as a preface to reach the main competition.

“As the level of baseball continues to rise worldwide, it is essential that the World Baseball Classic expand its field to give the growing number of formidable teams the opportunity to participate,” said Paul Archey, Major League Baseball’s senior vice president of international business operations. “In accordance with the tournament’s goal of growing and enhancing interest in the game, the Steering Committee has strongly endorsed the expansion of the competition for the 2013 event.”

But that’s down the road. Next year’s field will again feature defending title winner Japan, runner-up Cuba, the U.S., Dominican Republic, Korea, Mexico, Puerto Rico and Venezuela — all teams that qualified for the second round last time and thus received automatic berths for ’09. It was announced on Feb. 20th that Australia, Canada, China, Chinese Taipei, Italy, Netherlands, Panama, and South Africa were sent invitations.

Similar to the last time selection process, the Steering Committee determined the 16 teams for the 2009 World Baseball Classic based on criteria established to create the most highly-competitive international baseball event in the world. Some of the key factors involved in team evaluation and selection included: strength of native player base, number of professional players, international rankings, viability of domestic baseball programs, participant’s impact on baseball development in country/territory and diverse global representation.

“There has been significant improvement in the level of play internationally and indeed, Major League ranks include even more players from across the world,” said Gene Orza, chief operating officer of the Players’ Association. “The 16 teams selected best represent the breadth of quality play around the globe, which meets a key tournament objective, showing the world how far baseball has come internationally. If you liked the tournament last time around, wait ’til you see her this time.”

The venues are expected to be announced next month with all four first-round competitions being played outside the U.S., which will host Round 2, the semi-finals and finals, as it did in 2006.

Toronto remains a “very strong candidate” to host one of the four groups in first-round play, a source with knowledge of the event’s planning told The Canadian Press. Canada is likely to be joined by the United States, a Latin American country and a non-traditional baseball country in the first round, with the games being held at the Rogers Centre, home of the Major League Team Toronto Blue Jays.

Attendance for the ’06 tournament at its seven venues was 737,112 tickets sold. The semi-finals and finals were sold out at San Diego’s 45,000-seat PETCO Park, undoubtedly a front-runner to host the Classic’s finale again in 2009.

It was the first time that all Major League players were allowed to represent their native lands in an international baseball tournament. The baseball competition in the Summer Olympics, which is slated for Beijing in August, includes non-25-man roster MLB players only.

“The intensity in the stands as well as the intensity on the playing field was absolutely remarkable, and I’m not sure that going into it you could have felt that,” Commissioner Bud Selig said at the time regarding the legacy of the Classic. “I’m very confident that this will be the platform we use to take this sport internationally to the dimension that I want to take it and believe that we will.”

About the World Baseball Classic Steering Committee
The World Baseball Classic Steering Committee consists of 12 members representing professional baseball leagues, Club owners, players, international baseball federations and other international organizations affiliated with the game of baseball (for a complete list of members, see below). The Steering Committee provides ongoing guidance regarding the development of the premier international baseball tournament, the World Baseball Classic. The focus of the committee is to ensure that the tournament continues to maximize its potential to develop the game of baseball worldwide.

Steering Committee Members
Major League Baseball (2)

Tim Brosnan, Executive Vice President, Business
Rob Manfred, Executive Vice President, Labor Relations

MLB Players Association (2)
Gene Orza, Chief Operating Officer
Michael Weiner, General Counsel

International BAseball Federation (2)
Harvey Schiller, President
Eduardo de Bello, Panama

Nippon Professional Baseball (1)
Kazuo Hasegawa, Executive Secretary

Japan Professional Baseball Players Association (1)
Toru Matsubara, Executive Director

Korean Baseball Organization (1)
Il-Sung Ha, Secretary General

Korean Professional Baseball Players Association (1)
Jin-kyun Na, Secretary General

Members-at-large (2)
Gyo Ishiguro, Chief Officer, Culture & Sports Projects, Yomiuri Shimbun
Roland Betts, President & Founder, Chelsea Piers, L.P.

About World Baseball Classic, Inc.
World Baseball Classic, Inc. is a company created at the direction of Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) to operate the World Baseball Classic tournament. The tournament, which is sanctioned by the International Baseball Federation (IBAF), is supported by MLB, the MLBPA, Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB), the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO), their respective players associations and other leagues and players from around the world.

About the World Baseball Classic
The World Baseball Classic is the premier international baseball tournament and features the best players in the world competing for their home countries and territories. In March 2006, 16 teams from across the globe competed in the inaugural event, which was sanctioned by the International Baseball Federation (IBAF). More than 740,000 fans from 48 states and 15 countries attended games and millions more watched on TV as Team Japan was crowned the first-ever World Baseball Classic Champion. The next tournament is scheduled for March 2009 and will be held every four years thereafter.

Five teams advanced!

Anothr five teams advanced to the second round today, with Mexico in Pool B, Cuba and Puerto Rico in Pool C, Dominican Republic and Venezuela in Pool D. As for the final spot, Canada or USA have final chance depends on the result of USA vs. South Africa game.

Pool B:
Mexico 9, Canada 1

MEXICO          - 420 201 000   --   9
CANADA          - 000 001 000   --   1

The Canadians came, they saw and they almost conquered. During a roller-coaster three-day run in the inaugural World Baseball Classic, Team Canada had to come from behind in the bottom of the ninth inning to defeat a plucky South Africa team, then upset Team USA, but fizzled when all the Canadian dollars were on the line on Thursday night against Mexico. Losing to the Mexicans, 9-1, with a chance to wrap up a berth in the second round a day after beating the Americans.

When he travels in his native Mexico, Jorge Cantu hears one sport talked about more than any other. Team Mexico delivered that message on Thursday night, when it beat Canada, 9-1, to advance to the World Baseball Classic’s second round as Pool B’s No. 1 seed.

Pool C:
Cuba 11, Netherlands 2

CUBA            - 200 400 401   --  11
NETHERLANDS     - 000 002 000   --   2

The Netherlands’ hopes of advancing in the World Baseball Classic came to an end on Thursday night, as Cuba mashed its way to an 11-2 victory to lock up a spot in the second round of the tournament.

If there was ever any doubt that Cuba could compete in a tournament that featured the best teams it had ever faced, the club removed it with an extra-inning victory against Panama in its first game. Any remaining questions were obliterated Thursday with Cuba’s win against the Netherlands. More questions? Doubts, perhaps? The Cubans sure hope so.

Pool D:
Dominican Republic 8, Italy 3

ITALY           - 102 000 000   --   3
DOMINICAN REP   - 202 030 10x   --   8

The Dominican Republic performed as expected on Thursday, outslugging team Italy in an 8-3 win before a sellout crowd of 9,949 at Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex. This means the Dominican advances to the next round of the World Baseball Classic. This also will likely end Italy’s Classic run.

Burdened with two errors by third baseman Mark Saccomanno at Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex on Thursday afternoon, Italy closed its schedule in Pool D with loss to the Dominican Republic. However, Team Italy has no reason to be ashamed. But it appears its run in the inaugural World Baseball Classic has come to an end.

Venezuela 2, Australia 0

VENEZUELA       - 010 001 000   --   2
AUSTRALIA       - 000 000 000   --   0

It wasn’t supposed to be this close, and if ever there was a moral victory, this probably was it. Although Venezuela prevailed over Australia, 2-0, the losing club made this contest much more competitive than anyone could have expected.

The last leg of the initial journey had a few more bumps than expected. But Venezuela emerged victorious against a pesky Australian team and punched its ticket into the second round of the World Baseball Classic.

USA beated by Canada.

Lots of surprise happened again. USA lost, Cuba won in the extra innings, still not sure who will advance to the second round.

Pool B:
Canada 8, United States 6

CANADA          - 113 210 000   --   8
USA             - 000 060 000   --   6

Less than 24 hours after nearly falling to an unheralded South Africa team, Canada made some serious waves in the World Baseball Classic’s Pool B by beating Team USA, 8-6, on Wednesday afternoon at Chase Field. Canada now controls its own destiny to advance to the tournament’s next round entering its Thursday meeting with Mexico.

Team USA’s road to the second round of the World Baseball Classic just got a little rougher. After Wednesday’s stunning 8-6 loss to Canada at Chase Field, there is one fact that stands alone: The United States does not control its fate.

Mexico 10, South Africa 4

SOUTH AFRICA    - 000 300 100   --   4
MEXICO          - 212 031 10x   --  10

One thing has become clear about South Africa’s entry in the World Baseball Classic. It may be a bit short on talent, but it has an excess of heart. South Africa battled hard Wednesday night, but couldn’t hold off a relentless Team Mexico offense and fell, 9-4, in a World Baseball Classic game in front of a boisterous crowd of 7,937 at Scottsdale Stadium.

After being shut out in their first World Baseball Classic game, Mexico scored at least once in six of the first seven innings. The predominately Mexico-backed crowd, wearing mostly red and green clothing, hooted, hollered and sang throughout the game, perhaps sensing that their team was putting itself right back in the thick of Pool B play in the tournament and possible trip to Anaheim this weekend for the second round.

Pool C:
Cuba 8, Panama 6

CUBA            - 002 000 202 02  --   8
PANAMA          - 010 003 002 00  --   6

Just when Team Panama appeared to have momentum on its side, Cuba showed the crowd at Hiram Bithorn Stadium why it shouldn’t be counted out of the World Baseball Classic despite its lack of established Major Leaguers. Cuba dealt Panama a crushing 8-6 loss in 11 innings on Wednesday afternoon, mounting a two-out rally to win its first game of the event.

Cuba second baseman Yulieski Gourriel and his teammates reminded the 6,129 in attendance at Hiram Bithorn Stadium and anyone who was paying attention the reason for the season — and the tournament. It’s about baseball and pride, not to mention a healthy competition between countries.

Puerto Rico 8, Netherlands 3

PUERTO RICO     - 101 102 201   --   8
NETHERLANDS     - 000 120 000   --   3

Behind three home runs from three of the country’s biggest stars, Puerto Rico powered past the Netherlands, 8-3, in front of 15,570 at Hiram Bithorn Stadium on Wednesday, and continues to inch toward securing a spot in the second round of the World Baseball Classic, also to be held in the stadium.

The Netherlands made a game of it for five innings, carrying a tie score into the sixth, but Puerto Rico came out swinging that inning and never looked back, taking victory in the nightcap of the Pool C day-night doubleheader. The Netherlands was actually the home team in the tilt, though the crowd was squarely behind Puerto Rico, which was dressed in its road grey uniforms.

Pool D:
Venezuela 6, Italy 0

ITALY           - 000 000 000   --   0
VENEZUELA       - 101 110 20x   --   6

One night after exacting the mercy rule (winning by 10 runs) on Australia, Team Italy managed just two hits against a strong Venezuela pitching staff to drop a 6-0. A capacity crowd of 10,101 at Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex was firmly in the corner of the Venezuelans, whose pitching staff had few problems.

Miguel Cabrera homered for the second straight game and drove in two runs as Venezuela rebounded from a loss in its World Baseball Classic opener. Freddy Garcia struck out seven and allowed one hit in 3 1/3 innings for Venezuela, three other pitchers combined on a two-hitter and struck out 11. Carlos Silva gave up a hit in 3 2/3 innings, and Rafael Betancourt and Francisco Rodriguez each pitched a hitless inning for Venezuela.

World Baseball Classic all over begins!

David Ortiz - Hits game-winning HR, 12th inning, Game 4, 2004 ALCS ©Photofile
Pool B, C, D of the 2006 World Baseball Classic started to fight today, there are five intense games to play, the biggest suprise is Italy; who gets the help from Major Leaguers and itself, shutout the 2004 Athens Olympic Silver Winner Australia. Other winners are United States, Puerto Rico, Canada and Dominican Republic.

March 7 Result:
Pool B:
United States 2, Mexico 0

MEXICO          - 000 000 000   --   0
USA             - 000 100 10x   --   2

Jake Peavy and a parade of relievers combined on a four-hitter against a lineup loaded with major-leaguers Tuesday, leading the United States to a 2-0 victory over Mexico in its World Baseball Classic debut. Home runs by Derrek Lee and Chipper Jones were all that was necessary on offense.

“I never would have said this yesterday,” Lee said after the World Baseball Classic opener for both teams, “but today, being on the field, I think this means more. It’s like Jake Peavy said, ‘You’re not playing for your city, you’re playing for your country.’ When you have your country behind you, there’s a lot of responsibility. There’s no monetary motivation for this. Guys came to this team to play for their country. It’s as simple as that.”

Canada 11, South Africa 8

CANADA          - 000 030 404   --  11
SOUTH AFRICA    - 000 040 130   --   8

Canada narrowly avoided a startling loss in its World Baseball Classic debut, rallying for four runs in the top of the ninth inning to beat South Africa 11-8 Tuesday night.

“I would be lying if I said I didn’t feel [worried] going into the ninth inning,” Canada third baseman Corey Koskie said. “But one of the great things about baseball is I knew we had a good chance.” “Everyone was putting out to the end. We were going after it.”

Pool C:
Puerto Rico 2, Panama 1

PANAMA          - 000 100 000   --   1
PUERTO RICO     - 000 020 00x   --   2

Puerto Rico’s first game in the World Baseball Classic was a tougher test than many expected. Bernie Williams hit a tiebreaking single, Alex Rios homered and Team Puerto Rico made its WBC debut with a 2-1 victory over Panama.

I felt like I was playing the World Series in March,” Williams said. “It was a great feeling. There is something very special about playing in my country, in my hometown. People chanting my name was a very special feeling for me. I will treasure that.”

Pool D:
Dominican Republic 11, Venezuela 5

DOMINICAN REP   - 020 040 005   --  11
VENEZUELA       - 000 121 100   --   5

2005 AL Cy Young winner Bartolo Colon vs. Johan Santana, the 2004 AL Cy Young winner, but hitters took the show. David Ortiz and Adrian Beltre each homered twice, leading a powerful Dominican team to an 11-5 victory over Venezuela in their World Baseball Classic opener.

The fans were seemingly split 50-50 between their allegiances to their native countries. Equally enthusiastic, Dominican and Venezuelan fans proudly waved their respective flags and cheered loudly throughout the contest, whether it was for home runs, groundouts or fly balls.

Italy 10, Australia 0

AUSTRALIA       - 000 000 0  --   0
ITALY           - 031 122 1  --  10

Mike Piazza doubled and scored a run and Jason Grilli was almost perfect in 4 2/3 innings of work, leading Italy to a 10-0 victory over Australia in the first round of the World Baseball Classic on Tuesday night.

“This is what we talked about when we were in a group,” Italy manager Matt Galante said. “We want to show the world we can play. And how well we do, time will tell. But we feel we can compete, and if you can compete, you’ve got a chance. That’s what I keep saying.”

Matt Galante manages Italy

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usThe Baseball Federation of Italy announced that Matt Galante will be their manager for the inaugural World Baseball Classic next spring

The coaching staff of Italian team will include all-time left-hander saves record keeper John Franco as pitching coach, 2004 Athens Olympics skipper Giampiero Faraone as assistant manager, former big-league shortstop Gary DiSarcina; European scout for the Seattle Mariners Mauro Mazzotti, and 1984 Olympics Italy coach Jim Mansilla.

Galante, from New York, currently acting as special assistant to general manager Tim Purpura, has spent 23-year with Houston Astros. He was approached by Major League Baseball in June to manage the Italian team, and once he received permission from Purpura, Galante decided to lead Italy.

“It’s kind of exciting because it’s a new thing,” Galante said. “Major League Baseball is 100 percent behind it, so that’s a good thing.”

“My grandmother was born in Gaeta and told me a lot about our country of origin,” 1995 AL All-Star DiSarcina, who attended Italy’s annual baseball award ceremony on Dec. 8 and appeared open to further work with the Italian federation, said. “I would have never played in the big leagues if it weren’t for her support, and I believe it’s time for me to give something back to this country. You never know what’s going to happen when the tournament starts. Italy is going to compete; we are going to be a good team.”

Mazzotti has won league title in Italy with Bologna three times when he is a manager. He will manage the Champions of Europe for Grosseto of the Italian Series A League in 2006.

As the former Italian National Team head coach, Mansilla coached Italy in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. He is currently coaching at Miami Dade Junior College.

Preliminary rosters have not yet been announced, but it seems that several Italian-Americans from Major League Baseball are likely to be included on Italy’s team, include all-star catcher Mike Piazza.

“I don’t know if we have anyone else that can play his position,” Italian baseball federation president Riccardo Fraccari said. “He’s already working on his papers.”

Players who agree to participate in the World Baseball Classic with Italy team include Mike DiFelice, Frank Catalanotto, Mark DeRosa, David Dellucci, Tony Fiore, Mike Gallo, Jason Grilli, Matt Mantei, Frank Menechino, Doug Mirabelli, Val Pascucci, Joe Vitello and Pete Zoccolillo.

For outfielder Frank Catalanotto, who was selected to play for the Italian team even though he’s never been to Italy. The closest connection for Catalanotto is that his great-grandparents hail from Sicily. That was enough for Gene Orza, the players’ association chief operating officer who is the representative of union for the tournament.

Orza telephoned Catalanotto in September to tell him he was on a list of players eligible to play for Italy. Infielder Frank Menechino also got a call.

The long time resident of Long Island, N.Y. says he and Menechino, who hails from nearby Staten Island, N.Y., realize baseball officials would be hard-pressed to field a competitive team of native Italians and aren’t worried about anyone questioning their true heritage.

“We’re Italians from New York,” Catalanotto said. “And Italians from New York are pretty proud to be Italians.”

Fraccari added that 33 locally based players would be sent to major league spring training in mid-February, and several of those players will be selected for Italy’s team.

There has been an “enormous amount of ticket requests” for the event within Italy. “Travel agencies are already organizing charter planes to go over,” Fraccari said.

“We’re hoping the others continue to work with us beyond the classic also,” Fraccari said, adding that the federation is trying to arrange an appearance by Galante and Piazza in Italy to promote the tournament.

The Italian squad will train at Lakeland on March 3 to 6; will begin to play against Australia on March 7, Venezuela on March 8, and Dominican Republic on March 9 at the Disney sports complex.

Tigertown Host Italian Team

Mike Piazza Milestones & Memories
Lakeland, spring training site of Detroit Tigers, will host Italian national team next March in preparation for the World Baseball Classic.

Joe Garagiola Jr., vice president of baseball operations for Major League Baseball, inspected facilities in Lakeland. The Italian team will play an exhibition game against a Detroit Tigers at Marchant Stadium March 4 at 1:05 p.m.

Catcher Mike Piazza is on the Italian squad, which will train at Tigertown March 3 to 6. Other major leaguer, like and Mike DiFelice, Frank Catalanotto, Mark DeRosa, David Dellucci, Tony Fiore, Mike Gallo, Jason Grilli, Matt Mantei, Frank Menechino, Doug Mirabelli, Val Pascucci, Joe Vitello and Pete Zoccolillo, also agree to participate the WBC.

Ron Myers, director of Lakeland operations for the Tigers, said hosting the Italian team in the middle of spring training would not be a problem. “Detroit’s minor league players don’t officially report until March 7 and their first workouts aren’t until March 8,” Myers said. That essentially leaves the four Tigertown fields available for the Italian team.

Italy will begin tournament play against Australia on March 7, Venezuela on March 8, and Dominican Republic on March 9 at the Disney sports complex.

Major Leaguers join Coach Stuff

Larry Walker 2005 - Batting Action
Some ex- Major Leaguers did not able to play for World Baseball Classic next spring, but they will be the coach stuff for several teams.

51-year-old Ken Griffey Sr., who’s the special consultant of Cincinnati Reds, will be the first base coach of Team USA.

After 19-year major league career, Griffey was the Reds’ first base coach in 2000; he also coached with the Seattle Mariners several years before returning to Cincinnati, where he got his start as a player.

The U.S. team will train in Phoenix from March 3-6 and play the first round games with Canada, Mexico and South Africa at the Arizona Diamondbacks’ Chase Field (formerly known as Bank One Ballpark) and Scottsdale Stadium, spring home of the San Francisco Giants.

Buck Martinez, a former Toronto Blue Jays manager, will serve as U.S. manager with Davey Johnson as bench coach, Reggie Smith as hitting coach and Marcel Lachemann as pitching coach.

If the U.S. team advances all the way through, it will play second round in Anaheim Stadium and the semifinals and finals at PETCO Park in San Diego.

As for his son, Ken Griffey Jr. hasn’t made a commitment to play since he wants to be sure he’s fully recovered from surgeries on his knee and hamstring in September.

45-year-old John Franco, former New York Mets left-handed pitcher, will be the pitching coach for the Italian team. Former Mets coach Matt Galante will manage, and Mike Piazza has already agreed to catch for the Italy.

Larry Walker, 39, was outfielder for the Montreal Expos, Colorado Rockies and St. Louis Cardinals, retired in October, Canada Manager Ernie Whitt want him as a bench coach.

Walker has a herniated disc in his neck and is trying to let it heal without surgery, meaning he cannot swing a bat. But he has said he would like to do something for the Canadian team.

“He’ll be a part of the team, if I have anything to say about it,” said Whitt, the Toronto Blue Jays bench coach and Canada manager for the WBC. “I think he deserves that right.” “He can stand right next to me,” Whitt said. “I’d love to have him around. I’d love to have him as a player.” Whitt said he would like to have Walker, “even as a DH.” “If he doesn’t want to do that then he’d have strong consideration as a bench coach,” Whitt said.

The Canadian team will train at the Blue Jays’ spring training home in Dunedin, Florida in early March before play the first round at March 7 in Arizona.

Because it is spring training and pitchers will has pitch count limits, Whitt said he plans to use two starters each game and hope they can combine for about six innings. “We’ll have 13 to 14 pitchers and six of them will be starters,” Whitt said.

Pool D expected to play in Florida

Pool D, include Venezuela, Dominican Republic, Italy and Australia, are expected to play first round in Florida, will announce shortly.

Major League Baseball currently negotiate contract with Disney about six first-round games at Disney’s Wide World of Sports, spring training base of Atlanta Braves. Four team of Pool D will play their round-robin games on March 8-11 at Orlando, Florida.

Pool A will take place at Tokyo Dome in Japan, and Pool C will play at Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan, Puerto Rico, as for Pool B, it likely to play at a spring training park in Arizona.


Girardi won’t manage Italian Team

Image hosted by Joe Girardi, bench coach of New York Yankees, has declined to manage the Italian team in the World Baseball Classic next spring.

Due to Girardi’s parents have Italian heritage, he has been considered to manage or play by Italian Team, but he decided to give up the first chance to manage and he has no desire to play again.

“It would have been a great opportunity,” said Girardi. “I just wish the timing was different. I don’t think major league coaches can be part of this tournament because it could last the whole month of March, when we’re in spring training.”

Based on coach and recruiter of Italian team, Jim Mansilla, original the Italian team want Tommy Lasorda, the former Los Angeles Dodgers and USA 2000 Olympics Team manager, but Lasorda mentioned that he was waiting to see if he could become the United States’ coach again.

Besides, the Italian team also wants the Yankees right-hander Carl Pavano, who would have to secure an Italian passport to be eligible because neither of his parents was born in Italy,

Pavano has been in disabled list since June 28 with shoulder problem, he said, “It would be a great honor pitching in something like that. But all my thoughts right now are on getting healthy and being able to help the Yankees.”

Girardi Declines a Chance to Manage Italian Team

澳门百家乐[] 澳门赌场[] 足球投注[] 重庆时时彩[] 江西时时彩[] 新葡京线上娱乐[] 金沙娱乐[] 牛牛棋牌[] 梭哈棋牌[] 娱乐城[] 金沙娱乐[] 澳门百家乐[] 澳门赌场[] 棋牌游戏[] 澳门银河[] 伟德国际[] 澳门赌场[] 澳门赌场(澳门博彩(百家乐技巧(网络赌博(大发888(博彩评级(百家乐玩法(娱乐(网上赌博(博彩公司(百家乐官网(博彩网站大全(澳门赌博技巧(