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If you're as starved for box scores as I am, you can follow the exhibition series in Japan, where Eric Hinske is the lone Blue Jay on the MLB all-star roster.

Hinske, in the familiar role of backing up Eric Chavez, might not play a lot, but sharing a dugout (and the entire experience) with the likes of Barry Bonds and Robbie Alomar is a great opportunity. Not that he lacks confidence or maturity at this stage of his career, but this can only help Eric's development.

The MLB team left a few decent pitchers at home (Johnson, Schilling, Martinez, Zito...) and the series matters more to the Japanese all-stars, so it's not like the outcome of these games is significant. Last year's Olympic hockey tournament was more compelling than any NHL series, so I would welcome a "real" World Cup of baseball. Team Canada, if everyone participated, would need a superb effort to finish in the top six, with the U.S. and Dominican Republic fielding star-studded teams, and Japan, Venezuela and Cuba among the more serious contenders for a medal. By the time (if?) young Canadian prospects like Adam Loewen, Jeff Francis and Justin Morneau are ready to compete at such a level, "our" superstar, Larry Walker, will be reduced to coaching and/or pinch-hitting.

An open tourney would keep baseball in the Olympics, and it's fun to speculate on the rosters if MLB extended its all-star break every four years, allowing the world's best to represent their countries.
Eric's Excellent Japanese Adventure | 2 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
_Jordan - Monday, November 11 2002 @ 01:15 PM EST (#102377) #
Kent, first things first: great re-design! The boxed format is fabulous and the links are terrific. I'm glad you're in charge of the look-and-feel, since my idea of cutting-edge design is changing the colour of the banner on my magazine.

I would love to see a World Cup of Baseball, or something similar. Certainly, Paul Beeston was working towards that before he was pushed out of the Commissioner's Office. I agree that Canada would be lucky to garner sixth or seventh place. I also think Puerto Rico could field a pretty impressive team:

C Ivan Rodriguez
1B Carlos Delgado
2B Roberto Alomar
SS Jose Hernandez
3B Jose Valentin
OF Carlos Beltran
OF Bernie Williams
OF Jose Cruz Jr.
DH Juan Gonzalez

SP Javier Vazquez
SP Joel Piniero
SP Omar Olivares
SP Jaime Navarro
SP Ricky Bones
RP JC Romero
RP Roberto Hernandez

Jorge Posada
Jose Vidro
Javy Lopez
Alex Cora

A very solid lineup, which they'll need in order to counteract the damage done by that pitching staff. Maybe they could trade some of their bench strength. I'm also not sure whether Puerto Rico would play as a separate team from the United States; I've never fully understood the relationship between the two. And in any event, I can't see anyone taking out the US squad, not when the starting rotation could go Johnson, Schilling, Maddux, Zito, Glavine. It'd be fun to see, though.
_Richard - Tuesday, November 12 2002 @ 12:17 PM EST (#102378) #
Finally I have a little time to participate.I find the commentary on the site very stimulating.

I've always been surprised that a baseball " World Cup " has not taken place.The revenue potential would be enormous.I suppose labour discord,event timing,and fear of pitching injuries are all elements that need to be addressed.

Jordan took a shot at the P.R. team,I'll take a shot at our Canuck squad.

C:Cody Mckay(AAA Sacramento)
1B:Blair Betts(AAA Pawtucket)
2B:Stubbie Clapp(AAA Memphis)
SS:Kevin Nicholson(AAA Memphis)
3B:Korie Koskie
LF:Justin Morneau(AA Minny)Great young hitter..need to get his bat somewhere?
CF:Larry Walker
RF:A.Guiel KC
DH :Matt Stairs

God help us if we face some good lefties with this team.Danny Klassen would be in the mix in the infield,Jeff Ware,Jeff Guiel in the OF.

In regards to hurlers I'd probably have guys go 2-4 innings on short pitch counts.(I want Gagne not to be slotted into a 1 inning role)

Jeff Zimmerman
A Myette
E.Cyr(I'd keep a close eye on him on any long team flights!)
E.Francis(I know he's young ,but what the heck,I'd probably take Loewen to.)

I'm sure this list has no basis for reality,but hey,it's a starting point.Slam Sports has an excellent Canadian Baseball link.
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The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.