From November 28 to December 20 the Asia Winter Baseball League takes place in Taichung and Dou-Liou, Taiwan. Team Europe was invited for the first time to compete against squads from NPB, KBO and CPBL. 16 games are on the schedule for the European team. Games will be streamed through www.cpbltv.com. Owen Ozanich of the Rouen Huskies is also part of the team and will send us first-hand impressions for Mister-Baseball.com.
After starting the tournament winless in their first four games, Team Europe got revenge on Japan with a 14-7 win on Thursday. Former minor leaguer and current Hoofddorp Pioneer Lars Huijer got the start and threw four shutout innings, limiting the NPB prospects to just two basehits. Team Europe’s bullpen was less effective, conceeding 7 runs over the final five frames, but the offense did more than enough. Led by former Braves minor league shortstop Mattia Mercuri’s homer, Team Europe put up 14 runs on the board. For his multi hit effort, the Italian shortstop was named man of the match. Europe looks to build off their win against the number one team in the winter league when they play Korea on Friday. Dutch pitcher Maickel Rietel will get the start.