Press Release Northwoods League
Rochester, Minn. – Prior to the 2014 season the Northwoods League and Collegiate Baseball League Europe (CBLE) entered into an agreement that would allow the top six players from the CBLE to participate the following season in the Northwoods League.
At the annual NWL Fall Meetings a draft was held to determine the six teams in the league that would host these players.
“It’s another first for the Northwoods League and I look forward to the integration of European baseball players into the Summer-Collegiate Baseball world,” said Northwoods League President Dick Radatz, Jr.
The six teams and their selections are listed below along with each player’s country, position, DOB, home team and a link to their 2014 CBLE stats.
1. Madison Mallards – Martin Andanov (Bulgaria) LHP/RF, 2/14/94, Buffaloes Blagoevgrad
2. St. Cloud Rox – Gilian van Lith (Netherlands) LHP, 9/11/93, UVV Utrecht
3. Wisconsin Rapids Rafters – Dmitry Shtykher (Russia) RHP, 1/10/96, Youth of Moscow
4. Alexandria Blue Anchors – Michael Riekerk (Netherlands) C, 6/2/94, Orioles Bergschenhoek
5. Green Bay Bullfrogs – Axel Poesmans (Belgium) C, 2/7/96, Brasschaat Braves
6. Rochester Honkers – Julian Rip (Netherlands) 3B, 5/26/98, UVV Utrecht
“We’re very proud that CBLE’s progressive approach helps to open doors for young European baseball players,” said CBLE Founder and General Manager Jan Maarten Kops. “The unique partnership we have with the Northwoods League shows that CBLE’s efforts to build a platform for players and coaches to improve their game and meet new people who can help them get to the next level is working.”
The CBLE is a wood bat summer league based in Oosterhout, Netherlands. The league currently consists of four teams: La Rochelle Admirals, Oosterhout Bombers, London Cavaliers and the Sant Boi Falcons of Barcelona. Each year the coaching staffs draft their team rosters from the list of registered players in March.
Players typically play their regular season with college teams in the United States or play for club teams in elite leagues across Europe.
Like other Summer Collegiate Baseball leagues, Collegiate Baseball League Europe is dedicated and designed to provide high level competition for 18-23 year old players that wish to continue on into professional baseball. The CBLE operates in a similar manner to a Minor League team: playing daily in stadiums before fans, using wood bats and minor league specification equipment, and experiencing road trips between games. Like all other summer collegiate players, they are unpaid and live with host families or other accommodations in the same manner as Single A and Independent League players. While serving as a crucial player development tool, Collegiate Baseball League Europe provides new opportunities for young players from around the world to play Summer Collegiate Baseball in the “Old World”. More information on the CBLE can be found at www.cble.org.
The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. The 21-year old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 120 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (DET) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (BOS) and Ben Zobrist (TB). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League YouTube channel. For more information, visit www.northwoodsleague.com.