World Baseball Classic Update (Sept. 6, 2016)

Due to my trip and other responsibilities, I’ve been slacking on WBC updates. So, here is one.

The Pools for the 2017 WBC have been revealed:

The biggest piece of WBC news in the past few weeks is probably the reveal of the actual pools and locations for the tournament. They are:

Pool A (Tokyo Dome): Australia, China, Cuba, Japan

Pool B (Geocheok Dome in Seoul, South Korea): Taipei, Korea, Netherlands, winner of Brooklyn Qualifying pool (more on that later)

Pool C (Marlins Park in Miami): Canada, Colombia, Dominican Republic, USA

Pool D (Estadio Charros de Jalisco in Guadalajara, Mexico): Italy, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Venezuela

Pool E (Tokyo Dome): Top two of Pool A and Pool B

Pool F (Petco Park in San Diego): Top two of Pool C and Pool D

Semi-Finals and Finals are in Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.

Rosters for the Brooklyn Qualifier have been revealed:

Late in August, the rosters for the final qualifying pool were revealed. Baseball America has a good rundown of them, and I’ll go more in-depth on them when I do my preview of the group later in the month. But my early impressions say that Brazil and Israel will be the main teams to beat in the pool, although the UK could surprise.

Other WBC News:

Kim In-Sik, the manager for Team Korea, is pessimistic about the team’s chances due to a lack of pitching, especially right-handers. He hopes to get Seung-Hwan Oh, but problems with a gambling situation in Macau that led to his suspension from KBO and NPB (it’s complicated and I’m not entirely sure if I fully understand it, but it has to do with rules in Korea and Japan that frown upon gambling even if it’s in a place where it’s legal) make that less than a slam-dunk. On the position player side, Dae-Ho Lee and Byung-Ho Park have been supportive, although Park’s injury makes it unlikely he will take part. Among the KBO players Kim is looking at is Jae-Kuk Ryu, who had some time in the majors from 2006 to 2008. Another article suggests that Hyun-Soo Kim of the Orioles is a certainty to be on the team, but that other MLB players besides him and Dae-Ho Lee are iffy due to the fact they all have had injury problems throughout the year.

Ervin Santana is eager to represent the Dominican at the next WBC, and hopes that Miguel Sano can join him. However, based on conversations that Sano has had with Latin American scouting sources for the Twins, it’s possible he’ll be the odd man and might be better served staying with the Twins, since the DR likely will have players like Adrian Beltre and Edwin Encarnacion filling the roles that Sano would likely would be most fit for.

Noah Syndergaard is likely to receive an invitation from Team USA, although it’s unknown if he would accept.

21-year-old Tyler O’Neill, named the Mariners’ best Minor League player this season by the Seattle Times, is a candidate for Team Canada.

Ken Rosenthal speculates that Clayton Kershaw and A.J. Ellis may have a reunion on Team USA next spring. However, he notes that there are plenty of “ifs” connected to that, especially related to Kershaw’s health and whether Ellis would even be considered for Team USA given America’s depth at the position.

Russell Martin has said he intends to play for Canada if he is healthy. John Axford is also excited to participate.

Omar Vizquel will be scouting the Venezuelan League to keep an eye on people who are on Team Venezuela’s shortlist.

 

Advertisements

WBC Update (May 18, 2016)

It’s time for a WBC update!

Taiwan has abandoned plans to bid for a WBC pool, likely ensuring that Korea will host something.

Aroldis Chapman is now a US Citizen and says he’d play for Team USA if asked.

And if he is going to take part in the WBC, it’s going to have to be on Team USA, since Cuba has announced that, despite some negotiations to make it happen, defectors will not be allowed on the Cuban national team.

Bryce Harper is in so long as some of the other top US players are going to be playing.

Manny Machado is now on record as being on Team Dominican Republic next year.

And, finally, in what I believe is the first appearance of the WBC in a English-language fictional work, Japanese-American author Naomi Hirahara’s latest book involves a amateur detective trying to solve a murder that takes place at the 2009 WBC finals between Japan and Korea.

WBC Update for 4-25-16: Rule changes, Team USA, Puerto Rico, and what Asian Countries will get WBC Pools?

It’s been awhile, but it’s time for a World Baseball Classic update!

General News:

A possible change in the WBC rules will be introduced in order to entice more pitchers to play. It would allow teams to add extra players the further they advance, so it could be possible, for example, for Clayton Kershaw or David Price (who both have passed on the tournament in the past because they didn’t want to rush their throwing schedule) to join later in the tournament.

At least two pools will take place in Asia during the 2017 Classic, with one in Japan and one in either Korea or Taiwan.

Connected to that: earlier this year, Twins broadcaster, Hall of Famer, and occasional Netherlands pitching coach Bert Blyleven said that the Dutch were expected to start their WBC campaign in Korea. Apparently that isn’t official yet, but definitely possible. This is mainly because Korea has a domed stadium and Taiwan does not.

While I can’t find the exact tweet/article about it, apparently the locations of the first round of the “main” World Baseball Classic will be revealed on May 10, so presumably all these questions will be put to rest then.

Pakistani coaches have attended a clinic in China in preparation for their qualifying pool.

Players on possibility of WBC play:

Mike Trout says it’s too early to say whether he’ll play in the WBC, although it sounds like he does want to do it, it’ll depend on how he feels.

Staying on Team USA, the dream of a Team USA Madison BumgarnerBuster Posey battery apparently isn’t a pipe-dream. Although neither of them have said definitively, both of them said they were open to it.

Sonny Gray, meanwhile, thinks it’d be “awesome” to be on Team USA.

Francisco Lindor is excited to play for the Puerto Rican national team.

Look later this week as I make another projection for Team USA! And if you see any WBC news I missed, let me know by tweeting me at @DanJGlickman or e-mailing me at Djgwriter@yahoo.com!

The Best of 2014- BIZARRE BASEBALL CULTURE: “Mr. Go” is about a GORILLA PLAYING BASEBALL IN KOREA

This was originally published July 18, 2014. More “Bizarre Baseball Culture” can be found here.

In Bizarre Baseball Culture, I take a look at some of the more unusual places where baseball has reared it’s head in pop culture and fiction.

Oh boy.

I have covered many strange things on Bizarre Baseball Culture over time. There was the story about baseball in 2044, there was the Pokémon episode, the comic where the hero basically uses PEDs, the comic where Billy The Marlin and Spider-Man had to save Jeff Conine from Doctor Doom, and, of course, all of those “Ultimate Sports Force” comics. But perhaps none can compare to the 2013 Korean/Chinese epic that is… Mr. Go.

Yes, Mr. Go. A film much beloved by people throughout the baseball internet for the sheer curiosity factor of those blog posts at places like Big League Stew last year, but rarely actually seen by it. I, however, was able to procure a copy of the film, in the form of a DVD from Hong Kong, acquired from a Canadian seller on eBay. All for you, the readership of the Baseball Continuum (and anybody who found this link).

So, buckle up, because below the jump, we dive deep on Mr. Go. Prepare yourself, because gorilla baseball, MLB cameos, banana-shaped thunderstix, pizza commercials, a bullpen-cart chase and other madness awaits you:

Continue reading

BIZARRE BASEBALL CULTURE: “Mr. Go” is about a GORILLA PLAYING BASEBALL IN KOREA

In Bizarre Baseball Culture, I take a look at some of the more unusual places where baseball has reared it’s head in pop culture and fiction.

Oh boy.

I have covered many strange things on Bizarre Baseball Culture over time. There was the story about baseball in 2044, there was the Pokémon episode, the comic where the hero basically uses PEDs, the comic where Billy The Marlin and Spider-Man had to save Jeff Conine from Doctor Doom, and, of course, all of those “Ultimate Sports Force” comics. But perhaps none can compare to the 2013 Korean/Chinese epic that is… Mr. Go. 

Yes, Mr. Go. A film much beloved by people throughout the baseball internet for the sheer curiosity factor of those blog posts at places like Big League Stew last year, but rarely actually seen by it. I, however, was able to procure a copy of the film, in the form of a DVD from Hong Kong, acquired from a Canadian seller on eBay. All for you, the readership of the Baseball Continuum (and anybody who found this link).

So, buckle up, because below the jump, we dive deep on Mr. Go. Prepare yourself, because gorilla baseball, MLB cameos, banana-shaped thunderstix, pizza commercials, a bullpen-cart chase and other madness awaits you:

Continue reading

Your Offseason Baseball Viewing Listings for November 1, 2013

With games in Korea, Australia and Women’s Games from Japan, it’s a fun and eclectic mix of baseball for anybody looking for a fix of baseball as the North American off-season begins… or, in some cases, simply suffering from insomnia.

Do you know of any legal (whether they be sponsored or endorsed by a league or run by the league itself) streams? Let me know!

(All times Eastern)

4 AM: Australian Baseball League, Melbourne Aces at Canberra Calvary, will be streamed here, and will have a radio broadcast here.

4:30 AM: Australian Baseball League, Adelaide Bite at Brisbane Bandits, will be streamed here.

5 AM: Korean Series Game 7. Doosan Bears (Yu-Hui Kwan) at Samsung Lions (Jang Won-Sam). Winner wins the series. Will be streamed here.

7:20 AM: Australian Baseball League, Sydney Blue Sox at Perth Heat. Will be streamed here.

9 PM: Japan Women’s Baseball League “Japan Cup”. Astraia (JWBL) vs. Heisei International University (College team). Will be streaming here.

11 PM: JWBL “Japan Cup” Flora (JWBL) vs. Asahi Trust (Corporate Club Team). Will be streaming here.

Your Offseason Baseball Listings (October 31, 2013)

Crud. Now the MLB season is over. But wait! Don’t worry, here’s a list of baseball games to watch today. Don’t worry, I’m not going to watch all of these. Maybe. (NOTE: I am ONLY using official streams or TV showings, no bootlegs or illegal streams).

ALL TIMES ARE EASTERN

4 AM: Australian Baseball League Season Opener- Melbourne Aces (John Hussey) at Canberra Cavalry (Brian Grening), radio feed. Link for radio coverage will be posted here when it goes active. May also be available with video streaming here (click the game).

5 AM: Korean Series Game 6, Doosan Bears (Dustin Nippert starting) at Samsung Lions (Rick Vandenhurk). Doosan leads 3-2 in Best of 7 series. Video Stream can be found here.

And that’s it for today. HOWEVER, this is a CALL FOR ACTION: if you know of a LEGAL, TEAM-RUN and/or BROADCASTER-RUN place for baseball during these offseason months, let me know on my twitter feed. It can be a video of any language, OR a radio feed of English language.