Archive for the 'Italy' Category

Mike Piazza to Coach Italy in European Chamionships

Thursday, March 4th, 2021

There will be 16 teams in the European championships to be played in Italy on September 12-19. Mike Piazza appears to be set to coach Italy. He was supposed to coach Italy in the 2021 World Baseball Classic, but that was postponed. So now he gets the opportunity to coach Italy in the European championships.

The Netherlands have won 23 European championships. Italy has won ten. The only other two countries that have won the championship are Spain (1955) and Belgium (1967). Israel won the qualifier for the Olympics that will be played in 2021.

Twelve of the 16 teams have been decided and positioned into groups. Four additional teams will be added in qualifying tournaments to be played in June of this year. Below are the pools for the European championship:

Group A - Italy, Austria, Belgium and qualifier

Group B - Spain, Croatia, Germany and qualifier

Group C - Israel, Great Britain, France and qualifier

Group D - Netherlands, Sweden, Czech Republic and qualifier

International Baseball Travel

Wednesday, February 10th, 2021

With the corona virus still heavily on our plate, it may not be the best time to write about travel. But there is a website that is hoping to spark the interest of travel to all points of the world to watch baseball. It is Japanball.com and their link is in the lower right hand corner of my blog. You can click on Japanese baseball to find the website.

The trips planned for 2021 include the traditional Japan trip. They also hope to have trips to Europe and South Korea. In the fall the hope is to visit the Dominican Republic to watch some winter league ball and visit a few baseball academies. Myworld has been to all these areas to watch baseball, but it is much more enjoyable when you do it in a group.

Shane Barclay organizes the travel. He runs Zoom calls that have had special guests such as Kim Ng, general manager of the Miami Marlins, Trey Hillman, now coach of the Marlins and the manager of the SK Wyverns in Korea and the Nippon Ham Fighters in Japan, and Sandy Alderson now with the New York Mets. Shane has also worked for major league baseball helping them organize the World Baseball Classic events. He is no relation to Shane Barclay who is a manager in the Australian Baseball League. Bob Bavasi used to organize the Japan trips but he transferred the business to Shane, who has expanded the trips outside of Japan.

Myworld can tell you of the nightmares we have experienced trying to travel to some of these places. Waiting in long lines to buy tickets and not progressing in the line because ticket buyers are cutting in front of the line to buy tickets or take a place in line so you can buy their place in line. Taking a taxi who takes you a few miles out of your way so he add fare to the ride. Or even have to negotiate with a driver for a rate he feels he can get out of you because you are a tourist. These are some of the challenges my world has faced traveling alone to various countries to watch baseball.

But there are the many joyful experiences. Eating the very different ball park food in the stadiums. Hot dogs can be found but they are not a commodity popular at the international ballparks. Being soaked in beer in Panama because beer is so cheap there and if the home team is winning in the ninth inning everyone buys a cup of beer. When the home team wins the beer is tossed in the air. You can open your mouth at that point and probably get drunk. Empanadas are more popular in Panama than hot dogs.

The bento boxes in Japan that are filled with all sorts of sushi and fish. I could probably eat two bento boxes and still be hungry after the game. And who can forget the beer girls in Japan who carry pony kegs on their backs and pour out beer for you.

Getting strangled by the streamers in Taiwan after a big win. It feels you have been ensnared in a spider’s web, but everyone is screaming for joy that it is a good experience. There are also the cheerleaders in the Dominican Republic and South Korea that are a big part of the game. Don’t know if the Dominican Republic still emphasize the cheerleaders since it has been awhile since myworld has been in that area, but watching the do the merengue is an experience.

You also get to experience the fan enthusiasm in the stadium. In the Netherlands they had an opera singer belt out a tune in the seventh inning. In Japan teams would blow up balloons and let them fly after the end of the top of the seventh. This tradition is now being discouraged because of the health concerns.

There is also the sightseeing that can be done when not at the ballpark. The night markets in Asia, the tulips in Netherlands. In the Netherlands you have a greater chance of being hit by a bicycle than a car when you walk the streets. There are also the beaches in the Dominican Republic and the fish market in Japan. Sumo wrestling was also a common theme for many of the Japan trips. A little sumo in the afternoon and baseball at night.

So if you get the chance and you can afford the coin myworld would recommend you try a trip. What can be better than international travel to watch a baseball game. Just tell Shane that myworldofbaseball sent you.

Bologna Wins Italian Championship

Thursday, October 1st, 2020

It took seven games but Fortitudo Bologna defeated San Marino 6-5 in the seventh game of the Italian championship. Bologna has now won back to back to back championships. Eugene Helder gets credit for the game winning hit, but pitcher Alex Bassini won the MVP award. He pitched 4.1 innings in the seventh game after the starting pitcher got injured. Bassini got credit for the win.

Federico Celli became the fifth Triple Crown winner in the Italian League, hitting .473 with 10 homeruns and 36 runs driven in.

European Baseball Champions to be Hosted by Italy

Wednesday, August 19th, 2020

Italy will be the host of the 2021 European championships. The hosting cities will be Turin, Avigliana and Settimo Torinese. The number of teams will be expanded from 12 to 16. This is the first time Italy has hosted a European championship since 1999, even though they are considered one of the top two European countries in baseball. The games are scheduled for the month of September.

Baseball First Sport to Allow Fans in Italy

Wednesday, August 12th, 2020

Remember when Italy was one of the worst countries with corona virus cases? They seem to be getting better now. The baseball league is allowing fans, the first professional sport in Italy to begin allowing fans.

There were 150 spectators that came to witness the Fortitudo Bologna play San Marino on August 8. Fans were required to wear face masks in order to enter the stadium. Temperature checks were also conducted. Stadiums in Italy are not large and can only accommodate a couple thousand people at most.

Italian Baseball Will Begin July 8

Tuesday, June 30th, 2020

The Italian League will begin July 8. They will play three games a week. One game on Wednesday night with a double header on Saturday or a game on Wednesday night with single games on Friday and Saturday. The top four teams will advance to the playoffs. The semifinals will be a best of five while the finals will be a best of seven. The seventh game if necessary will be played on September 26.

In an interesting twist, it was stated all games will be seven innings. There was no discussion on what would happen if the games were tied after seven. They would either accept ties as part of the standings or play extra innings using the international rule.

More European Leagues Set to Open Season

Friday, June 12th, 2020

Some of the European Leagues not considered top notch in baseball are set to open this weekend. Switzerland, Bulgaria and Finland are set to open this weekend. The two major European countries Italy and Netherlands have yet to start. It is my understanding the Netherlands has cancelled their 2020 season while Italy is still looking at playing sometime in July. France has also cancelled their season.

The Confederation of European Baseball has cancelled all 2020 competitions between European teams.

Under 15 World Cup Scheduled for Tijuana in October

Friday, June 5th, 2020

Tijuana, Mexico is becoming a hot spot for baseball. First it was announced that the Women’s World Cup of Baseball would be played there November 12-21. Now the WBSC has made it a double header by announcing that the Under 15 World Cup will be played in Tijuana on October 30 to November 8. That is back to back World Cup events held in one city.

In the last World Cup held in 2018 the United States defeated Panama, while Taiwan finished third. The teams that will be competing in this 15 and under World Cup are:

Africa: South Africa
Americas: Cuba, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Panama, United States and Venezuela
Asia: Taiwan and Japan
Europe: Germany and Italy
Oceania: Guam

Italy to Start Season June 14

Tuesday, April 21st, 2020

One of the hardest hit countries with the corona virus, Italy, is planning on beginning their baseball season June 14. It is unclear whether spectators will be allowed in the stadium. It will be a shortened season that will end in early August, followed by the playoffs.

There are ten teams in the Italian baseball league. They will be broken out into two leagues of five teams each. The top two finishers of each league will compete in the playoffs.

Cool.

Top Ten European Teams

Thursday, February 20th, 2020

Mister Baseball came out with its top 50 European teams. You can go to MisterBaseball.com to review the full list. Myworld provides the list of top ten European baseball teams below.

1. CNF Unipol Bologna (Italy)

2. L&D Amsterdam (Netherlands)

3. Curacao Neptunus (Netherlands)

4. Heidenheim Heidekopfe (Germany)

5. Arrows Ostrava (Czech Republic)

6. Rouen Baseball 76 (France)

7. T&A San Marino (San Marino)

8. Parmaclima (Italy) - club Manny Ramirez was rumored to be signing with for 2020

9. Tenerife Marlins (Spain)

10. Bonn Capitals (Germany)