Tag Archive | "Ireland"

Update: Field O’Dreams Baseball Field Being Built in Ireland


Almost two years ago we helped spread the word of the Field O’Dreams project in Ireland to help build the first proper baseball facility in the country. I am glad to report back to you today that the project is still underway and the field is in the process of being built.

We here at BaseballdeWorld are always wanting to see the game grow in countries where it has not been a big sport. To do so things like fields need to be built. That is why this project was one I was very interested in. I contacted John Fitzgerald over at the Baseball United Foundation who was helping run the Field O’Dreams project and he responded with some photos of the field being built.

Here is the progress of the field project. They raised over $2,500 and that helped the project reach the funds needed through the matching funds of the Irish government. Click on a photo to view it larger. If you would like to donate, you can do so at the Baseball United Foundation page. The work John continues to do is something we should all stand behind and support for the good of the game we all love. You can also find the Baseball United Foundation on social media including Facebook and Twitter.

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Baseball United Foundation Teams Up with Doc Gooden For Fundraising Luncheon


Press Release Baseball United Foundation

Former Star Pitcher Will Speak at Event in February

White Plains, NY – November 28, 2014 – The Baseball United Foundation has announced plans for a fundraising luncheon to benefit their programs to grow youth baseball programs in regions of the world where baseball is not traditionally played.

The luncheon – which is being called “Lunch with Doc” – will be held on February 21, 2015 at Graziella’s Italian Bistro in White Plains, NY. The event will feature a talk and Q&A session with former Mets and Yankees star Dwight “Doc” Gooden.

Gooden is a three-time World Champion, four-time All-Star, as well as a Cy Young and Rookie of the Year Award winner. He pitched for five MLB teams, including the New York Mets and Yankees. In 2010, he was inducted into the New York Mets Hall of Fame.

The Baseball United Foundation was created by documentary filmmaker John Fitzgerald in 2006 and is headquartered in Westchester County, NY. In the past year, the foundation has sent American coaches and over 1,000 lbs of baseball equipment to Ireland to conduct baseball training clinics. In July 2014, the foundation launched it’s “Baseball Exchange Program,” by bringing a 14-year old Irish baseball player to New York for a week of advanced baseball training and activities.

“We are very excited to welcome Doc Gooden to our fundraising luncheon,” explained Baseball United Foundation founder John Fitzgerald. “Doc’s presence and the support of local baseball fans will help us continue our current programs to help kids all over the world who want to play baseball.”

For more information on the “Lunch with Doc” event and to purchase tickets, visit www.LunchwithDoc.com.

About the Baseball United Foundation

The Baseball United Foundation is a 501c3 organization based in New York. The foundation assists teams, leagues, and players in countries where the game of baseball is relatively new. In January 2014, the foundation sent 1,000 lbs. of baseball equipment to Ireland, along with professional coaches, to conduct a series of baseball clinics for kids.
####
Contact: John Fitzgerald
Baseball United Foundation
John@BaseballUnitedFoundation.org
www.BaseballUnitedFoundation.org
914-468-3108

flyerlunchwithdoc-copy

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Ireland: Playoff Spots Up For Grabs


This weekend sees the top four teams play each other with playoff spots up for grabs.

This Saturday the Spartans host the Hurricanes at Corkagh Park. The Spartans can tie up 1st place with a victory over their rivals. The Hurricanes need to win to have any chance of finishing in 2nd place.

The Black Sox then travel to Belfast for a double header on Sunday. The league is so tight that the Northstars could still finish at the top or 4th. However two wins for the Dublin team would see the Black Sox finish 2nd.

Its going to be a great weekend!

Stay tuned for a playoff preview after this weekend.

League Standings:

1. Dublin Spartans 10-4
2. Belfast Northstars 9-4
3. Dublin Hurricanes 7-6
4. Dublin Black Sox 7-6
5. Greystones Mariners 5-9
6. Munster Warriors 3-8

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Ireland: Recap of the Peter O’Malley Invitational Tournament in Dublin


The Gathering Tournament

Sunday saw the close of the hugely successful 3-day Peter O’Malley Invitational Tournament in Dublin Ireland with hosts Ireland defeating “Los Barbaros” (an outfit featuring top-quality players who traveled all over the world to compete) in the final 13-3.

An indictment of the progression Baseball Ireland has made, the Peter O’Malley showcased not only the interminable love and passion for the game in Ireland but also the skill and level with which baseball is now played on this isle.

Hosted in honor and support of Irish-American Hall of Famer Peter O’Malley, the tournament featured 4 teams – The Irish National Baseball Squad, the Liverpool Trojans, the Rota Blue Devils and Los Barbaros. The format was a round-robin tournament where all teams play each other once with the two top teams competing in a final on Sunday and the 3rd and 4th placed teams battling it out for 3rd place in a playoff preceding the final on Sunday.

The tournament began on Friday 12th July in uncharacteristically sweltering Irish weather which only highlighted further the beautiful state of the renovated park. The Blue Devils and the National team began the tournament with a tight 5-4 victory for Ireland. Leo Farrell’s RBI triple was the highlight of the game.

In the afternoon game the Liverpool Trojans defeated the Rota Blue Devils 13-3.

The final game of the day saw Los Barbaros beat the Trojans 5-0 with impressive pitching from Scott Karnes and Andrei Apostoaei.

Saturday followed up both the weather and class of baseball played on Friday with 3 games watched by a packed crowd – featuring even a visit from King Joffrey of Game of Thrones himself !

The morning game saw Ireland play the Liverpool Trojans and featured an outstanding start from Irish pitcher Nat Anglin who went 5 perfect innings before a hit eventually found its place in left-field. The solid foundation the bullpen left for the national team was built on by solid hitting and Ireland ran into a 5-1 lead. The Trojans fought back however and worked towards one of the most climactic moments of the tournament – the bottom of the 7th inning with one out and the tying run on 3rd base, coach Sean Mitchell brings in closer Bredan Hourihan in a high pressure situation. Composed and collected however, Hourihan showed absolutely no fear and proceeded to strike the next two batters out to close the game.

Following the morning excitement, Baseball Ireland were honoured to have Peter O’Malley to the field who welcomed the Rota Blue Devil and the Los Barbaros players. The game finished Rota Blue 1-9 Los Barbaros

Ireland’s second game on Saturday saw them face off against Los Barbaros and also was witness to an impressive pitching start from Brendan Scott who went 7 innings giving up only one earned run. Mark Treacy also had an impressive outing at catcher. Final score: Ireland 5-2 Los Barbaros

The highly anticipated final saw pitchers Tom Enright and Andrei Apostoaei face off against each other and it proved to be a pitchers duel until the 5th inning when the game was broken up with exceptional hitting from Ireland who batted around and scored 4 runs. A tightly contested game, Los Barbaros and Ireland traded runs for a few innings before Ireland began to hold a comfortable lead. The top of the 9th saw a dramatic ending to the game and tournament. With 2 outs and a considerable lead, victory for Ireland was in their grasps and a slow clap began to flare up from the crowd getting progressively louder until a cheer erupted as McKendry (or “MacDaddy” as he likes to be called) struck out the last batter to close out the game and bring home the silverware for Ireland. Stand out performer in the final was 2nd baseman Jimmy Pita who grabbed 5 RBI (despite batting lead off!) and went on to grab MVP for the tournament.

Undoubtedly successful, the Peter O’Malley tournament will now be an annual event which will inspire and enlarge the already growing baseball population in Ireland. For the national team it was proved great experience before they fly out on Sunday to compete in the B pool European championship qualifiers, a clean sweep of the tournament will give the players real confidence for the upcoming Euro’s who will no doubt represent Ireland with “bród and onóir”

Photo Courtesy Baseball Ireland – for more pictures visit their Facebook Page

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Ireland: 2013 Halfway Report for Baseball Ireland League


By Jack Farrell

As the international break approaches, the 2013 Baseball Ireland League is shaping up to be one of the tightest in recent memory.  The Dublin Spartans, Belfast Northstars and the Dublin Hurricanes are all still right in the contention for the league title and there remains an even tighter push for the final playoff spot between the Dublin Blacksox and the Greystones Mariners.

Leading the table are the Dublin Spartans with a record of 7-3, the standout performer in the first half of the season for the Spartans has been Wes Willets who leads the league in batting in both hits (15) and average (0.536) Following closely are the Belfast Northstars with 6 wins and 4 losses. The Northstars have been well drilled and have come out this year as one of the surprise packages of the league due to the great coaching and performances from Jonathan Sculli (who leads the league in K’s (50) and Mark Smith. The Dublin Hurricanes sit in third place with a record of 6 wins and 3 losses. Pitcher Cormac Eklof has again been a dominant force for the Hurricanes and possesses the lowest ERA in the league (2.50).

All eyes are on the fight for the last playoff spot between the Dublin Blacksox and the Greystones Mariners. Currently, the Mariners hold 4th place with a record of 4-7 but have played two games more than the Blacksox who play with 4 wins and 5 losses. This playoff battle culminates with a much anticipated crunch match between the two on the 6th of July in Blacksox Park. Stand-out performers for the Mariners this year are Leo Farrell who leads the league in stolen bases (14) and Jaime Cuevas with an impressive 0.464 batting average. Robert Cavvichioni and Jeremias Osio have impressed for the Blacksox in the first half of the year with an ERA of 1.76 and a batting average of 0.429 respectively. The Munster Warriors sit at the bottom of the table with a record of 2-6. Eric Kelly and Michael O’Sullivan lead the team in hitting with averages of 0.321 and 0.429

Stretching back from 1995, the Adult Baseball League has gone from strength to strength in recent years with the current format of 6 “A” League teams spread out across Ireland and 7 “B” League teams (one in Wicklow (Greystones Mariners), one in Munster (Munster Warriors), one in Belfast (North Stars), and 3 in Dublin (Dublin Black Sox, Hurricanes, and Spartans).

 

 

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Help Build a Baseball Field in Ireland; Get Free Gift


We have been a strong supporter of the Field O’ Dreams project that is working to raise money to build a proper baseball facility in Ireland for the first time ever.

The Baseball United Foundation has teamed up with Baseball Ireland and the Ashbourne Baseball Club to build the facility that will be the first of its kind in Ireland.

We are strong supporters here of projects that try and grow the game in different parts of the world, and that is what the Field O’ Dreams project is about.

Without proper facilities it is very difficult to grow the sport. We have seen what the World Baseball Classic can do to generate interest in international baseball. So help us help them.

Late last year Baseball de World made a donation to the project. With each donation there are awards that are available. We are now taking our reward to give back to our readers. We have secured six five (1 donation already) Ireland National Team t-shirts to give away to our readers who donate to the project.

All you have to do is donate $20 to the project. In addition to the t-shirt that Baseball de World will send you (free of charge), you will get a copy of the DVD The Emerald Diamond. All you have to do is tell them you were sent by us – Baseball de World. We will then confirm everything and ship you out a t-shirt.

This is for a good cause. We here at the site receive nothing when you donate. We just want to see the facility built in order to help the sport progress in Ireland.

So head on over the the Field O’ Dreams website and donate. The more the better but even if you can only spare $1 or $5, that still helps.

Spread the word if you can. There is still a need for donations in order to help get the field built.

*We will do our best to match sizes to your needs, but with us only receiving six, we are limited to what we can do. We hope you understand.

Edit: If you donate after seeing this, please shoot me an email at esbynum@baseballdeworld.com and let me know. Thanks

Edit: We have 2 shirts left after getting our first donation. Hurry before they are gone. We will try to update here how many we have left.

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Ireland Needs Your Help to Build a Baseball Facility


With baseball starting up for the 2013 season with Spring Training and the World Baseball Classic, the sport is on the minds of those all over the world. With that being the case, and St. Patrick’s Day, fast approaching, what better time to remind people of a great cause that is being under taken.

Last November we told you about a project filmmaker John Fitzgerald had started. Fitzgerald made a movie about the Irish National Baseball Team called The Emerald Diamond. Now he and others are trying to build the first proper baseball facility in the country.

The goal was to raise $20,000 by St. Patrick’s Day, but they are not quite there yet. You can visit FieldODreams.com to donate as little as $1. Anything helps. So please spread the word if you can.

We talk a lot about the growth of the game overseas and how good that is for the game as a whole. Well this is your chance to help out, even for as a little as $1. It is much more difficult for the game to grow without any facilities to train and play on, so let’s see if we can help make this happen.

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Help Ireland Build a New Baseball Facility


Earlier this year I had the chance to interview filmmaker John Fitzgerald who made the film Emerald Diamond about the Irish National Baseball Team. The film chronicles the Irish National Team on the European baseball scene and was an interesting story because you could see the growth of the team since its inception.

Now the team is looking to grow a little bit more, and they need your help. They are trying to raise money to build a proper baseball facility that currently doesn’t exist in Ireland. The facility would have more than just a playing field. It would include bullpens, batting cages, and more.

One of the main reasons the sport doesn’t grow like in some areas of the world is the lack of facilities. A ballpark is not a small undertaking, but with the help from the baseball community, they can and will succeed.

I ask you to visit FieldODreams.com and donate a $1. They are running their effort similar to that of a Kickstarter campaign. If you donate at least $20, you will receive a copy of the Emerald Diamond. The rewards for donations go up from there.

Their goal is to having the funding completed ($20,000) by St. Patrick’s Day 2013.

This is a great cause and you can be apart of helping the sport we all love grow. I wouldn’t ask you to do something I wouldn’t. So, BaseballdeWorld will be donating its latest ad revenue to the cause.

I invite you to spread the word and see if we can’t get this project off the ground and rolling.

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Movie Review: The Emerald Diamond


Originally posted on BaseballJourneyman.com

What country won its first international baseball game against a country that no longer exist and the first player to get a hit in international play was born in another country?

Ireland

I have always been fascinated with baseball played in countries other than the USA. Sure it’s the same game, but at the same time it’s not. Awhile back I came across a documentary on baseball in Ireland, and I had to see it.

The Emerald Diamond is a beautiful film. It chronicles the emergence of the Irish National Baseball Team on the European baseball scene. It is an interesting story told by film maker John Fitzgerald.

Up until 1995 there was no Irish National Baseball Team. It basically formed out of the desire of a few softball players who wanted something a little more. They continued the hope and formed a team that would eventually play internationally in 1996.

The European B Pool Championships were being held in England in 1996, so the boys in green got ready and made the trip.

Most of the players on the team had very little or no experience playing baseball growing up. For the most part they were far outmatched by their European counterparts, but they never quit.

After a successful trip to England, for a developing team at least, they received some help from an Irish-American. Peter O’Malley at the time was the owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers but was a player in helping develop baseball globally. He helped build the  O’Malley baseball fields in Corcaigh Park in Clondalkin, West Dublin, Ireland which is considered the home of Irish Baseball. It also happened to be the first baseball field in Ireland.

The team continued to play in the European Championships gradually doing a little better each time as they gained more experience. However, it was when the team raised funds and took off on a trip to the USA that things really seemed to turn around.

In 2001, the Irish National Team and an all-star youth team took a two-week trip to the east coast of the States to play exhibition games. They learned a lot on this trip and it eventually helped them improve in the long run. Both the youth team and the National Team quickly learned from seeing other teams practice and play. They also received some help from coaches in the States that they met in the games. It was a great learning experience that helped propel the team to further heights.

However, the highlight of the trip had to be playing an exhibition game at Fenway Park.

Throughout the film you see the want and desire on every players face as they go through a learning curve. But that desire to compete and improve never leaves. It’s an infectious thing that no matter how bad the loss might have been would always creep back into the minds of the players and coaches.

That’s the beauty of the film. It’s great seeing the improvement of the team, and they really did improve but I don’t want to give everything away (you’ll have to watch the film). But the real beauty if seeing the growth of the game on every level. Not only did the adult program expand and improve, but so did the youth programs and that is really where the growth of the game will come from. The first adults to play the game will get old, but if the kids find a love in the game you will have baseball forever.

It’s a great film. Head on over to IrishBaseballMovie.com to read more about it and don’t forget to pick up a copy. You might be surprised how quickly the team went from nothing to winning games internationally.

I have to give this a 5 glove rating. It’s definitely one you’ll want to own.

Stay tuned for more reviews coming soon….

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Ireland Baseball Semi-Finals Set for Saturday


The semi-finals of the A-League in Ireland are set to start on Saturday.

The first game of the day will take place at Corkagh Park with the Hurricanes facing off against the Mariners.

Game 2 will take place in Belfast with the Northstars squaring off against the Spartans.

Say tuned for up to date info on the playoffs here at Baseball de World.

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