Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Baseball Making Its Pitch to Return to the Olympic Games

Despite being rather young when the Olympic committee decided that baseball and softball would no longer be a prominent sport in the Olympic Games I can remember being distraught and upset. I never watched much of the Olympics but I always watched the baseball and softball, baseball was my life at the time. The World Baseball Classic is nice and it also pits the world’s best athletes and players against each other on a grand stage with countries bragging rights on the line but it’s not the same, it’s not the Olympics. Baseball is finally making its pitch to return to the Olympic Games when the games move to Tokyo in 2020. That pitch began this week with the start of a new Premier 12 tournament last week.

The World Baseball Softball Confederation’s 12 best teams will face off head-to-head in a tournament that will be played from November 8th through the 21st of this month. The winner of the tournament will be granted an automatic qualification in the 2020 Olympic Games if the sport is reinstated.

Baseball has been out of the Olympics since the 2008 Beijing Games and the decision will not be made whether to bring the games back until August of 2016. The 12 teams that will participate in the tournament with the hopes of an automatic bid into the games, again if they are reinstated, are Japan, the United States, Cuba, Taiwan, Netherlands, Dominican Republic, Canada, South Korea, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Italy and Mexico in that order from 1-12.

The United States team is made up of players currently down on the farm systems of Major League Baseball teams. The first game that the USA plays will be today, November 10th, against the Dominican Republic inside the Taoyuan Baseball Stadium in Taipei. Go USA!

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)