The 4th annual 2011 MLB Academies Tournament will be played in Regensburg, Germany from April 3 to April 8. After Tirrenia, Italy in 2008 and Toulouse, France in 2009, the Armin Wolf Arena will host the tourney for a second consecutive year. The Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, France, Sweden and the Czech Republic will send teams. Italy is missing on the schedule, while Belgium will be there for the first time.
Overall 120 players from the six mentioned national academy systems will make the trip. It is a real “Spring Training” for the participating players with a focus on games and workouts. While the games will offer players some valuable pre-season competition, the focus of the tournament will remain largely on player development. Rules will be modified to prevent extended innings and there will be strict pitching restrictions to reduce the risk of injuries.
|2011 MLB Academies Tournament Schedule|
|Sun, April 3||12:00||Germany||Netherlands||Field 1|
|Mon, April 4||11:00||Netherlands||Sweden||Field 1|
|14:30||Belgium||Czech Republic||Field 1|
|Tue, April 5||10:00||Czech Republic||Sweden||Field 2|
|15:00||Czech Republic||France||Field 1|
|Wed, April 6||10:00||Netherlands||Czech Republic||Field 1|
|Thu, April 7||10:00||Sweden||France||Field 1|
|13:00||Czech Republic||Germany||Field 1|
|Fri, April 8||10:00||Germany||Sweden||Field 1|
MLB Academies in Europe
As part of its game development initiatives in Europe, Major League Baseball supports a growing network of national player academies around the continent. To date, this network includes 16 academies in eight European nations, providing over 400 of the Europe’s best young players with top-quality, year-round training. At the center of this network is the annual MLB European Academy, which will once again be held in Tirrenia, Italy from August 3 – 26. Since its inception in 2005, the MLB European Academy has brought together 227 players from 27 European and African nations, with 45 of those players going on to sign professional contracts with MLB clubs.
Photo: Gregor Eisenhuth, www.eisenhuth-photographie.de