by Pim van Nes
Despite short term notice about World Cup organization in September 2011, Netherlands federation KNBSB has decided to delegate a strong selection of players and coaches to Panama, host of the IBAF tournament.
Already on Monday, first working day after IBAF congress in Havana, the Dutch federation released a message on the official website concerning World Cup 2011. The same message has appeared on the renewed KNBSB website since Tuesday and on Wednesday national team press officer Loet van Schellebeek confirmed in a telephone conversation with Mister Baseball: “Undoubtedly Netherlands will always participate in a World Cup tournament, including this year’s edition!”
Since early January the selection of the Netherlands national team has practiced twice a week in Rotterdam and Haarlem in indoor sessions organized by new manager Brian Farley. The regular players from Dutch national major league “Hoofdklasse” welcomed several USA Minor League players spending winter leave in the Netherlands and even Washington National Roger Bernadina, record holder from Hoofdklasse in USA Major League, joined the national team preparing for the international season. In June Farley will head his team to Rotterdam in order to participate in World Port Tournament and in September to World Cup in Panama, but first of all for the St Petersburg International Baseball Tournament at the end of this month and the beginning of March in Florida (USA).
Another Major League player from the Netherlands, pitcher Rick van den Hurk, left his country already on January 6. He traveled to Florida to join his teammates of Baltimore Orioles for spring training and in between to colder Baltimore for attending a fans fest. Many colleagues and friends have complimented Van den Hurk with his successful Big Leaguers Tour through Europe together with several pro players from MLB top level. Many press releases about the European clinic had drawn the attention of other players, who now offer their ready help for a possible second Big Leaguers Tour in Europe after coming season 2011.
by Pim van Nes
Baseball writer for