Recently, I was contacted by the British Baseball Federation, asking me to participate in the World Baseball Classic Qualifier in Regensburg, Germany from September 20-24 this year. I am able to play for Great Britain thanks to my wonderful English mother. (She reads this blog!) My mother was born in Kettering, England and moved to the US when she was 12 years old. Not only did I gain most of my smarts from my mother (or was it my smart mouth?), but I am also a dual citizen because of her. This is an incredible opportunity to represent my heritage and see another part of the world. And, it ties in well with the International part of my degree! I am very honored to have even been considered for this opportunity and am hopeful I will be able to compete. You may be asking why it is not a definite yes since the Owlz season would be over. Well, like many contracts, when you sign a Minor League Baseball contract, you have, in essence, signed your life away. I must gain approval from the Angels in order to compete in the WBC Qualifier. I am on a very limited pitch count (due to the number of innings I threw in college this year), so I don’t know that they will grant me permission. Unfortunately, this isn’t one of those circumstances where I can do it now and ask for forgiveness later (didn’t you teach me that, Mom?). Nevertheless, I thought this was quite a unique experience, and I wanted to share.
For those of you who don’t know what the World Baseball Classic is, it is essentially the FIFA World Cup of baseball. Best way to describe it. Just not as big. When baseball was part of the Olympics, only college and some Minor League players would play as the timing of the Olympics conflicted with the MLB season and other professional leagues around the world. The first WBC was in 2006, the next in 2009. It was then decided that it should be repeated every four years. (not sure where they got four years from???) Thus, the next WBC is in March of 2013.
If you so desire, you can find more information at www.worldbaseballclassic.com . Website is a bit lacking though so you may just want to Google it or hit up http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Baseball_Classic.