After leading the Bern Cardinals to seven Swiss championships in eight years, 38-year-old John Baum has stepped down as player-coach. The club paid him homage with a laudatory article on its official website. He will focus on being an assistant coach with the Swiss National Team in 2013.
After two years with the Dornbirn Indians in the Austrian Baseball League, Baum joined the Cardinals for the 2005 season. He led the team right away to the national championship and the Swiss Cup. In 2008 Bern became the first Swiss team to win a European Cup Qualifier. They repeated that feat in 2009 and 2012. In 2012 they additionally won the European Cup Playoff and secured Switzerland a spot in the A-Pool European Cup for 2013. In the Swiss Finals this fall he capped his career in style with a three-run homerun against the Therwil Flyers.
In November Baum got nominated for Coach of the Year by the European Baseball Coaches Association (EBCA). He came up short, as World Baseball Classic Qualifier winner Mauro Mazzotti took home the trophy. But the American still received much praise and got acknowledged for his work with the Bern Cardinals.