The schedule for the XXVI 18U Baseball World Cup has been released. The tournament will take place in Taichung, Chinese Taipei from August 30 to September 8 as twelve teams compete for the title.
The tournament will start with a round robin on August 30 and will go through September 3. The top three teams from each pool will advance to the semifinal round where they will play another round robin. The top two teams after the semifinal round robin will play for the championship on September 8.
Last year the USA defeated Canada in the gold medal game. This year the USA will defend its title against a tough field.
Group A will consist of host Chinese Taipei, Mexico, Venezuela, Czech Republic, Japan, and host Chinese Taipei. Group B consists of defending champion USA, Korea, Italy, Australia, Colombia, and Cuba.
Host Chinese Taipei, who took home the bronze medal in 2012 in Seoul, will kick off the tournament with the first night game at Intercontinental Stadium against Mexico following the opening ceremonies.
Other opening day games include defending champion USA against 2012′s 4th place Colombia. Last year’s runner-up Canada will take on Japan early in the morning of Day 1.
Cuba holds the record for most gold medals in this event. However, despite winning 11 of 25 titles, they did not compete in the 2012 edition of the tournament. They are back looking for its first gold medal since 2004 when it was last played in Chinese Taipei.
Eric Bynum is Managing Editor here at BaseballdeWorld. He spent three years as an ESL teacher in South Korea, and is now working on his master's degree in history with a focus on baseball and WWII. He has played and/or written about baseball for the past 30 years and is an avid Atlanta Braves fan.