Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Baseball doesn’t need to come back to the Olympics. No one missed it and the only people initially mad about its removal seemed reflexively so, as if stung by the initial insult before realizing the insignificance of such a move. There was no uproar when it was taken out. Wrestling, the ultimate niche sport, practically revolted when it initially was removed from the Olympic program and fought hard to maintain its status. Baseball and softball left with a few sad quotes from players and managers.
As if to prove the point that few cared, Major League Baseball began a World Baseball Classic in the wake of the Olympic removal. It actually featured Major League players, unlike the Olympics (MLB players won’t be playing in 2020 or, probably, ever). The Games have always used low-tier prospects, and even with the star power nobody cared beyond the rubbernecking of the inaugural event. After that, the WBC was relegated to “oh, that’s going on now?” status whenever it happened and was (briefly) covered on TV, newspapers or the internet. If you can name anything that happened at the last WBC, it probably happened to you. If you can name the last year the WBC was held, it’s because of the law of probability.
If people couldn’t even care about a stand-alone, international baseball tournament with the best players, why would they care about a baseball tournament with D-list players held concurrently with competitions in dozens of other sports that actually matter? They won’t. They don’t. Baseball’s summit is the World Series. There is no other.
Posted: July 26, 2016 at 01:35 PM | 32 comment(s)
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
By their powers combined….
Baseball and softball could merge into one international governing body in hopes of returning to the Olympics.
The sports are meeting with Olympic officials this week to find out how much co-operation is required to regain their summer games status, International Softball Federation President Don Porter said Tuesday.
“There are a lot of benefits of being an Olympic sport. That is what you have to weigh against losing your identity,” Porter told The Associated Press.
Porter and International Baseball Federation (IBAF) President Riccardo Fraccari are meeting separately with IOC sports director Christophe Dubi to get a better idea of the bidding process for the 2020 Olympic program.
Fraccari said the sports “have to study many things.” Baseball-playing countries must first back a joint bid at a Dec. 3 meeting in Dallas.
Baseball and softball are competing with karate, roller sports, sports climbing, squash, wakeboard and wushu for one spot on the 2020 program. The IOC will vote on the sports in September 2013.
The IOC voted in 2005 to remove baseball and softball from the Olympic program after the 2008 Beijing Games.
Two years ago, baseball and softball failed to get IOC support for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics when offering separate proposals for women’s baseball and men’s softball. Golf and seven-a-side rugby, which offered men’s and women’s medal events, were voted onto the 2016 program.
Baseball and softball officials now agree, following IOC advice, that co-operation is their best hope of regaining Olympic status.
Posted: November 15, 2011 at 08:05 PM | 28 comment(s)
Thursday, September 01, 2011
It’s B.J. Wallace.
Billy Lyle “BJ” Wallace Jr., 40, and Amber Sheree McKenzie, 29, were being held in Baldwin County Corrections Center as of Wednesday, both charged with first-degree manufacturing of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Wallace, a Monroeville native, pitched for the U.S. team in the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, and the Montreal Expos picked him third in that year’s amateur draft, signing the left-hander for $550,000, according to baseball-reference.com and Press-Register archives.
He set an Olympic record for strikeouts in a game by fanning 14 in a win over Italy, but he never reached the major leagues. ...
While his professional baseball career never prospered, Wallace put up impressive numbers in organized baseball.
In 1992, Wallace set a Mississippi State University school record with 145 strikeouts, according to baseball-reference.com.
Posted: September 01, 2011 at 04:03 AM | 15 comment(s)
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