USA won called game, Korea vs China Postponed

August 14th, 2008

At the second day of Olympic Baseball 2008, after a tough lost vs Korea, USA rebound against Netherlands with 7-0, but Korea vs China Games Suspended and Postponed.

Game 5: Game Summary(Box Score)
Team           1 2 3  4 5 6  7 8 9  R  H  E LOB
United States  0 1 0  4 0 0  1 1    7 10  0   7
Netherlands    0 0 0  0 0 0  0 0    0  1  0   2

Who will win if a college pitcher (Stephen Strasburg) vs. a AAA pitcher (Shairon Martis)? The answer surprise everyone, Strasburg struck out 11 through seven innings but Martis last less than three inning and allow five runs.

Strasburg allowed just one hit and walked one as the U.S. rebounded from a tough 8-7 loss to South Korea the previous night.

Matt LaPorta belted a three-run homer and Matt Brown added a solo shot. Jason Donald had three hits and an RBI.

The game was called with the Netherlands having the bases loaded and no outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, causing players on the losing team to vent a little.

“Every run we score against the USA is important and anything is possible,” said catcher Sidney de Jong. “With the bases loaded and no outs, we may score eight or we may score three, but everything you take into the next game is important.”

That wasn’t the case though for USA manager Davey Johnson.

“I’m not good at waiting and neither are my guys, but I’m glad they called it when they did,” said Johnson. “When you’re down seven to zip your chances of scoring against my pitching staff is not very good.”

Brown homered to start the second inning, and the U.S. added four more runs in the fourth. Terry Tiffee doubled to begin the frame and Brown walked. With one out, LaPorta homered. Donald doubled in a run later in the inning.

The Americans added another run on a wild pitch in the seventh and Dexter Fowler had an RBI groundout in the eighth.

Game 6: Game Summary(Box Score)
Team    1 2 3  4 5 6  7 8 9  R  H  E LOB
China   0 0 0  0 0 0         0  2  0   3
Korea   0 0 0  0 0 0         0  3  0   2

And another surprise came from China vs Korea game, the host use their pitching to let Asian opponent quiet for five innings, and after a combined two-and-a-half hour rain delay, they must wait until Aug. 17 to try to break a 0-0 deadlock. The game will be played on the Wukesong Baseball Main Field at 18:00.

Canada, Chinese Taipei shutdown China, Netherland

August 13th, 2008

Day one of 2008 Olympic Games is finished, the first two games in the morning, Chinese Taipei (Taiwan) begins the Olympics with 5-0 win over Netherland, and Canada use mercy rule with 10-0 shutdown host China.

Game 1: Game Summary(Box Score)
Team           1 2 3  4 5 6  7 8 9  R  H  E LOB
Netherlands    0 0 0  0 0 0  0 0 0  0  4  1  3
Chinese Taipei 0 1 0  3 0 1  0 0 X  5  7  0  7

From Taipei Times:

Pitching like the staff ace that he has become, Chen Wei-yin struck out seven over seven shutout innings to lead Taiwan past the Netherlands in a convincing 5-0 win in Game One of the Beijing Olympic baseball tournament at the Wukesong Baseball Field in Beijing yesterday.

The Kaohsiung County native, who enjoyed an outstanding amateur career at various levels of competition prior to being selected by the Chunichi Dragons of Japan’s professional league in 2004, was simply magnificent in holding a potent Dutch lineup to three scattered singles over seven scoreless frames.

Fellow reliever Cheng Kai-wen finished off with a near-perfect eighth and ninth to keep the shutout victory intact for Taiwan.

“I couldn’t be happier with my performance today,” an excited Chen said after the game. “The velocity, control and breaking ball were all working as well as they can.”

Doing the damage at the plate with his bat was speedy outfielder Chang Jien-ming who went a team-best two-for-three with a pair of RBIs to keep his team on the wining track.

A patient Lin Chih-sheng showed exceptional discipline at the batter’s box with three drawn walks to jumpstart two of Taiwan’s three scoring rallies.

The contest began with Taiwan wasting little time getting to Dutch starter David Bergman in the bottom of the second with Lin drawing a walk, advancing to third on a double by Jiang Chih-hsien before scoring on Luo Guo-hui’s sacrifice-fly to claim a quick 1-0 lead.

After a scoreless third, Taiwan moved on again with Lin drawing a leadoff walk off Bergman and Luo following in his footsteps one out later to place runners on first and second to set up Yeh Jung-chang’s RBI-single that made it 2-0.

That was not all the runs that Taiwan would score in the fourth as Lin Tseh-hsuan also came through with a bases-loaded single for Taiwan’s third run of the game.

Chang then brought in the fourth run with another sacrifice-fly to give his team a comfortable 4-0 advantage at the end of the fourth.

Doubles by Shih Chih-wei and Chang in the bottom of the sixth scored the fifth and final run of the game for Taiwan which was more than ample for the win as the Dutch made it to second base only twice let alone scoring a run in the lopsided win.

Game 2: Game Summary(Box Score)
Team    1 2 3  4 5 6  7 8 9   R  H  E  LOB
Canada  0 0 0  3 2 0  1 4    10 10  0   6
China   0 0 0  0 0 0  0 0     0  8  2   7

From CBC Sports:

China was shown no mercy — well, one inning’s worth — by Team Canada in its historic first foray into Olympic baseball.

Chris Begg and two relievers combined on an eight-hitter as Team Canada crushed China 10-0 in eight innings in the preliminary round of men’s baseball at the Summer Games in Beijing on Wednesday.

Begg, a right-hander from Uxbridge, Ont., scattered six hits over 6 2/3 innings and struck out nine batters, including the side in the bottom of the fifth.

“The strikeouts, generally that is not my game,” he said. “I tend to try to place my pitches and get them to put the ball in play.”

“He is one of our best pitchers, in terms of knowing how to pitch,” Canadian manager Terry Puhl said. “If it wasn’t for him, we wouldn’t be here.

“He has had some shoulder injuries. But the man knows how to pitch.”

Ottawa’s Tim Burton and Rheal Cormier, a former major leaguer from Moncton, N.B., mopped up in relief before the mercy rule went into effect.

“I’m going to be going to him a lot,” Puhl said of Cormier.

Scott Thorman of Cambridge, Ont., homered and drove in three runs, Adam Stern of London, Ont., had two runs batted in, and Victoria’s Michael Saunders capped the scoring with a solo home run.

Winnipeg’s Stubby Clapp, Nick Weglarz of Stevensville, Ont., and Jimmy Van Ostrand of Richmond, B.C., had the other RBIs.

“We have good hitters,” Puhl said. “If they continue to have quality at-bats, we’re going to score some runs.”

Chinese starter Bu Tao was tagged with the loss, permitting seven runs — two unearned — on five hits in 4 1/3 innings.

Bu equalled Begg pitch for pitch through three scoreless innings before finally flinching in top of the fourth inning, yielding singles to Clapp and Saunders to put runners aboard for Thorman, Canada’s hulking clean-up hitter.

Thorman launched a towering home run over the wall in right field to make it 3-0.

“For three innings, it was nail-biting time,” he said. “We had one hit through three innings.

“In a situation like this, the first runs mean so much and we were fortunate to get rolling. Until that point, we were taking nothing for granted and nothing lightly.”

Canada scored twice off reliever Liu Kai in the fifth inning, the first run crossing the plate on a wild pitch and the second on Weglarz’s bases-loaded walk.

Canada went ahead 6-0 in the seventh inning, and piled up four more runs in the eighth.

Chris Robinson was hit by a pitch, took second base on an errant pickoff attempt, and Garcia walked to bring up Stern, who delivered both runners with a soft triple that bounced beyond the reach of centre-fielder Sun Lingfeng.

Clapp later cashed Stern with a sacrifice fly and Saunders ripped a solo homer to right off reliever Li Weiliang to complete the scoring.

“Today was not a good day for us,” Chinese manager Jim Lefebvre said. “We’re a much better team than we showed.”

Canada, which went 6-1 in Olympic qualifying, is determined to improve on its fourth-place finish at the 2004 Athens Games, when it lost 11-2 to Japan in the bronze-medal game.

The five players retained from that squad — Begg, Clapp, Mike Johnson, Ryan Radmanovich and Stern — know the supreme test will be Thursday’s preliminary game showdown with three-time defending champion Cuba (5:49 a.m. ET, CBC

As much as China was excited by the prospect of competing in baseball for the first time at Beijing, the sport won’t be retained at the 2012 London Olympics.

Team China win several exhibition games

June 29th, 2008

For New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) team at exhibition games with China Olympic Baseball Team, the result is not what they thought. Before excitement 917 fans who arrived at Rogers Park, Danbury Westerners lost by 6-19, and they are impressive by Team China.

Following the game, Westerner catcher Brad Pippa came away impressed with the offensive performance of Team China.

“They’re obviously a very good hitting team. They can jump on pitches if you make mistakes. They hit the ball hard all over the place.”

According to East Windup Chronicle:

Team China has been on an east coast tour, mostly playing teams from the New England Collegiate Baseball League. Yesterday the team beat the Danbury Westerners 19-6 and while the level of competition isn’t what it will face in the Olympics, everyone seems to think Jim LeFebvre’s squad is improving. The team pounded out 23 hits and five HRs in the game.

Later when they meet Holyoke Blue Sox, who lost 2-7 to Team USA before more than 3,600 fans on June 13, Team China won again.

It’s not often that Olympic level competition comes to Western Massachusetts.

But that was the case yesterday, as the Chinese national baseball team defeated the Holyoke Blue Sox 2-1 in an exhibition game at MacKenzie Field in Holyoke.

The Chinese took advantage of two early errors by Blue Sox left fielder Jonathan Ross to take a 2-0 first inning lead, with an RBI coming from Hou Fenglian and Wang Chao.

Lowell All-Americans lost too.

Lowell, MA- The Chinese National team visited Lowell Friday night to take on the All-Americans. It was all China in this one touching up starter Alex Szymanski (Franklin Pierce/Londonberry,NH) who allowed 4 runs off of 4 hits and a 2 run home run to begin the game. He would settle down not allowing another run until a solo shot off the bat of Zhang Yufeng making the score 5-0 in the fourth. China would not score again until a 2 run home run to right field in the 8th made it a 7-0 Chinese lead. China would tack on two more to make the final 9-0.

This was an exhibition game between the Chinese National team and the Lowell All-Americans, the Chinese team has been training in Arizona since April in preparation for this summer’s Olympic Games in Beijing. The All-Americans were one of many stops this summer for the Chinese team as they played a full schedule of opponents in the NECBL.

Keene Swamp Bats can not win.

Chinese National Team Holds Off Swamp Bats, 9-7
2008 Beijing Summer Games hosts open 9-1 lead early, hold off late Keene charge

RINDGE, N.H. (June 25, 2008) – The National Baseball Team for the People’s Republic of China held off a late rally by the Keene Swamp Bats of the New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) to post a 9-7 victory before 901 at Dr. Arthur and Martha Pappas Field on the campus of Franklin Pierce University tonight.

Centerfielder Sun Lingfeng (Beijing/Beijing Tigers), catcher Wang Wei (Beijing/AZL Mariners) and leftfielder Wang Chao (Tianjin/Tianjin Tigers) led a 16-hit attack for the Chinese National Team, which will represent the host country in the baseball tournament at the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing with three hits each. Lingfeng was 3-for-5 with a home run, while Wei hit 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles, a run scored and three RBI. Chao finished 3-for-5 with an RBI. Shortstop Zhang Yufeng (Shanghai/Shanghai Eagles) batted 2-for-5 with a double, RBI and run scored, while designated hitter Hou Fenglian (Tianjin/Tianjin Lions) scored three runs and stole four bases in the contest.

Righthander Li Chenhao (Beijing/Beijing Tigers) picked up the win on the mound, allowing two earned runs on five hits with a strikeout and walk over four innings. Righthander Chen Kun (Sichuan/Sichuan Dragons) pinned down the save with a scoreless and hitless ninth, working around a two-out walk.

John Barr (Ivylans, Pa./Virginia) led Keene’s nine-hit attack, hitting 2-for-3 with two triples and four RBI. Shortstop Chris Tremblay (Cranberry Township, Pa./Kent State) batted 2-for-4 with a double and run scored, while first baseman Paul Karmas (Douglaston, N.Y./Saint John’s) chipped in by going 1-for-2 with an RBI.

Lefthander Tom Cote (Swanzey, N.H./Franklin Pierce) took the loss, surrendering seven runs, six earned, on eight hits with four strikeouts and two walks over 2.2 innings.

China jumped ahead as its first batter of the night, Lingfeng, laced a lead off homerun down the rightfield line. Fenglian followed with a walk, stole second and third before scoring on a wild pitch. The Swamp Bats got one of those runs back in the home half of the first as Tremblay led off with a double down the rightfield line and scored on a single to left by Karmas.

China added a single run in the second with an RBI single by Sun Wei (Beijing/Beijing Tigers), before breaking the game open with a four-run third to chase Cote. Wang Wei and Yufeng each posted RBI doubles, before Li Lei (Beijing/Beijing Tigers) drove in a run with a sacrifice fly and Chao notched an RBI single.

The teams traded single run innings through the middle frames, before Keene got back in the contest with a four-run seventh. A hit batter, walk and single loaded the bases for the Swamp Bats with one, before Barr cleared the bases with a triple down the rightfield line. Barr scored on a passed ball and Keene loaded the bases again, but stranded them all to end the rally.

Keene (9-6, 9-4 NECBL) is back in action tomorrow night when it hosts the Pittsfield (Mass.) Dukes in an NECBL interdivisional battle at Alumni Field in Keene at 7 p.m. The Chinese National Team is back in action on Friday, when it faces the Lowell (Mass.) All-Americans of the NECBL at 7 p.m.

Chinese National Team 9, Keene Swamp Bats 7

1-2-3 4-5-6 7-8-9 R-H-E
CHN 2-1-4 1-0-1 0-0-0 9-16-3
KNE 1-0-0 1-1-0 4-0-0 7-9-3

CHN: Li Chenhao, Chen Junyi (5), Zhu Dawei (7), Li Weiliang (7), Guo Youhua (8), Chen Kun (9) and Wang Wei, Yang Yang (5).
KNE: Tom Cote, Sean Tierney (3), Adam Kolarek (7), Sean McDermott (8), Matt Jebb (9) and Franco Valdes.

WP: Chenhao
LP: Cote
SV: Kun

HR: CHN – Lingfeng (solo in the 1st)

TOG: 3:05 ATT: 901

Torrington Twisters Strong but loss.

The Torrington Twisters played well, but did not have enough Saturday night against a tough Chinese Olympic team, losing 2-1 in an exhibition game at Fuessenich Park. Josh Zeid pitched well for Torrington, going eight innings. In those eight innings, Zeid gave up two runs on six hits, striking out seven while walking two. “Josh Zeid pitched a gem,” Twisters coach Gregg Hunt said.

Torrington got runners on base against five Chinese pitchers as they banged out five hits, reached base on two errors and drew four walks. The Twisters left 10 men on base, getting a run only on a fifth-inning sacrifice fly from first baseman Jaren Matthews. The run was unearned due to two errors by Team China in the inning. “We had guys on base,” Hunt said. “We had guys in scoring position all night, and we didn’t cash in.” Torrington had runners in scoring position in the first, second, third, fifth and sixth innings, but scored just the one run. “Fundamentally, (Team China is) very, very solid,” Hunt said.

Even when the Twisters hit the ball hard, a Chinese player was in position to make the play, something that is preached by the Chinese coaching staff. “You got to train smart,” coach Jim LeFebvre said. The players constantly communicate with one another, especially on any ball hit in the air. “We work a lot on that,” LeFebvre said. “Communication is very important. You’ve got to practice. Everything is important.”

With the talent level from the United States, Cuba, Japan, South Korea, Chinese Taipei and Canada expected to be high at the Summer Olympics in Beijing, the Chinese will need to be on top of their game, LeFebvre said. “We’re just going to go out there and play hard and play the game right,” LeFebvre said.

Team China was able to get plenty out of its pitchers. Starter Wang Nan was solid in five innings, giving up the one unearned run on five hits. Nan struck out four and walked two. The star of the bullpen for China was Bu Tao. Tao started the eighth inning and proceeded to strike out all five batters he faced. “You got to work at your game,” LeFebvre said. “We do that everyday. The game is about defense. Pitching and defense.” Four Chinese relievers yielded just two walks and struck out seven batters in four innings of work. LeFebvre appreciated the experiences his team had in front of a big crowd at Fuessenich. “It’s the kind of game we need to play,” LeFebvre said of the one-run game. “We put a couple of guys in the game that we needed to get in the game.” Hunt also enjoyed the experience. “It’s fantastic,” Hunt said. “It’s a great honor to play them.”

Zeid called it an honor to pitch against the Chinese Olympic team and said that the hitters were tough, fouling off many pitches and refusing to strike out. China scored a run in the third on a two-out, run-scoring double by Feng Fei. Team China added one more in the fourth on a sacrifice fly to deep center field by Li Lei.

Newport Gulls did win.

Jared Prince, normally an outfielder, pitched two scoreless innings of relief to lead Newport to a 4-2 victory over the Chinese National team in an exhibition game Sunday.
The game was the last of six exhibition games the Chinese team played against New England Collegiate Baseball League competition. The team will serve as the host squad this summer at the Beijing Olympics.
In his two innings of work, Prince struck out three batters. Reliever Chase Reid struck out the side in the top of the ninth to preserve the victory and earn the save.
A two-run fourth inning keyed the win for Newport. Mike Melillo scored on a single by Mike Tamsin, and then Kyle Socorro brought in Kyle Conley with an RBI single. Melillo later drove in Kyle Rhoad ? who scored twice for Newport ? with a sacrifice fly.
China scored its first run in the top of the third inning on a sacrifice fly by Wang Chao that drove in Sun Lingfeng. Li Lei scored the team?s other run on a double-play grounder in the top of the seventh.

So maybe host China could have a chance to win one or two games at 2008 Olympics.

The Schedule of China vs NECBL is:
19 CHINA @ Danbury Westerners                 16-9
21 CHINA @ Torrington Twisters                 2-1
23 CHINA @ Holyoke Blue Sox (POSTPONED)
25 CHINA @ Keene Swamp Bats                    9-7
27 CHINA @ Lowell All-Americans                9-0
28 CHINA @ Holyoke Blue Sox 11:30am            2-1
29 CHINA @ Newport Gulls                       2-4

Team China won two and lost one in fundraiser games

May 22nd, 2008

Due to 7.9 earthquake, which epicenter was in the county of Wenchuan, Sichuan province could lead to huge disaster, the exhibition games between China Olympic Baseball Team and Golden Baseball League teams will become fundraiser.

Chinese media qiaobao also report this.

For first two game vs Long Beach Armada, both teams win one game.

Blair Field was the place to be this past weekend as the Long Beach Armada hosted the National Team from the Peoples Republic of China for two games. The weekend was originally intended to be an exhibition series—a chance for both managers to evaluate their players so that they could trim their rosters. After the devastating earthquake in China the focus shifted to fundraising and helping people across the world that desperately need it.

China came out strong in the first game, scoring four runs in the first inning behind a bases loaded triple by Feng Fei. Rik Currier, player/pitching coach, received little help defensively from his Armada teammates as the team committed four errors in the first three innings. Boo Tao pitched 4 2/3 innings for China and gave up four runs including a bases-empty home run by Steve Moss in the first inning and an RBI double to catcher David Parrish. Parrish also threw out a Chinese base runner.

The Chinese team held on for a 9-6 victory on Saturday night but couldn’t stop the Armada on Sunday. Long Beach Manager Steve Yeager cut three players after Saturday’s game, trimming the roster down to 34. Yeager needs to get down to 22 players before the season opener on May 22 in St. George, UT.

Long Beach native and Millikan H.S. alum Nick Bierbrodt took the mound for the Armada and the first ever draft pick of the Arizona Diamondbacks looked sharp as he struck out five batters during his three innings on the mound. Ryan Claypool took the hill after Bierbrodt and fanned four more Chinese hitters as the Armada won the game 5-2.

Kris Kasarijian singled and scored on a sacrifice fly from Ryan Lehr to give the Armada a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning. Marland Williams later reached base on an error and scored on an RBI single by Tony Torcato.

Steve Moss lined a two-run single in the eighth inning that highlighted a three-run rally giving Long Beach a 5-0 lead.

Feng Fei singled in two runs in the top of the ninth inning for China. Fei had five RBIs in the series, including a bases-loaded triple in the first inning on Saturday.

Andrew Layfield threw two scoreless innings for the Armada, while Brandon Buxbaum pitched the ninth inning and allowed the two China runs.

You can see some decent photo by Mark.

For the third game vs. Yuma Scorpions, Team China also win.

Before Wednesday’s exhibition between the Yuma Scorpions and the Chinese Olympic team at Desert Sun Stadium, there was a moment of silence to honor the victims of the earthquake that struck central China last week.

That moment meant a lot to the Chinese team – and the $1,100 the Scorpions raised in an auction of a autographed Chinese team jersey meant even more.

“It was really nice that the Scorpions would raise money for it,” Chinese team Jim Lefebvre said. “And for them to bring awareness to it with the moment of silence, we really appreciate it. It was very moving to the players.”

The gestures were especially meaningful to pitcher Chen Ku and right fielder Fen Fei, who both had family in the region at the time of the quake, Lefebvre said.

“They were concerned,” Lefebvre said. “We were all concerned about that. Chen Kun’s parents were okay, but he couldn’t get communication to his wife for a couple days, so there was some concern. But everything was okay.”

Chen did not pitch in the game Wednesday, but Fen had a two-run double in the first inning, giving the Chinese a lead they would never relinquish in a 6-3 win.

The team has been in the United States since early April practicing and scrimmaging against American teams. A 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck the Sichuan province May 12. The death toll is approximately 10,000.

Lefebvre said he gave the players the opportunity to return home, but none took him up on the offer.

Before coming to Yuma, the Chinese team split two games with the Scorpions’ Golden Baseball League foe Long Beach. The Armada held a similar auction to raise money.

Lefebvre said the earthquake puts everything the team is doing in perspective.

“We’re over here in a very festive mood, and everybody is working hard, then something like this comes along, it just takes all the shine off what we’re doing,” Lefebvre said. “You realize baseball is secondary when it comes to human life.”

So Team China is not that weak as people think, especially after they won two games from teams who has player with major league experience.

China Olympic Team To Play 3 Game Series Versus Golden Baseball League

May 9th, 2008

From oursportscentral, China Olympic Team will play three games vs. Golden Baseball League.

Dublin, CA: The independent professional Golden Baseball League (GBL) announced today that the China Olympic Team will play a three-game series versus GBL teams later this month in Long Beach, CA and Yuma, AZ Managed by former Los Angeles Dodger All-Star and Major League Manager Jim Lefebvre, the China National Team is a rising power in the baseball world in Asia with recent victories over Korea and will be one of the eight teams vying for gold in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The China National Team will face the Long Beach Armada, managed by former Los Angeles Dodger and 1981 World Series MVP Steve Yeager, in a two game series at historic Blair Field in Long Beach, CA. The first game will be on Saturday night, May 17th with a 7:05 P.M. start time. The second game will be the following day on Sunday at 6:05 P.M. The team will then travel to Yuma, Arizona and will take on the Yuma Scorpions, managed by former Los Angeles Dodger All-Star Mike Marshall on Wednesday, May 21st at 6.35 P.M.

“We are excited to be able to bring such an interesting match-up and high-quality baseball to our fans in Long Beach and Yuma,” said GBL Commissioner Kevin Outcalt. “Baseball has made great strides in China and I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of the players on this China National Team continuing their careers in major league organizations once the Beijing Olympics are completed later this summer.”

The series should be a good tune-up for China as they will face a veteran lineup in Long Beach that boasts one of the most experienced professional independent teams in the country with four former MLB first round draft picks and a roster with five players with major league experience including pitcher Jerome Williams, pitcher Nick Bierbrodt, second baseman Cleatus Davidson, first baseman Tony Torcato, and catcher David Parrish. The Yuma Scorpions also field an experience professional team including major leaguers catcher Pascual Matos and starting pitcher Mike Esposito, along with former New York Mets second round draft pick Alhaji Turay leading off and patrolling center field.

The 2008 Beijing Olympics will feature the world’s finest baseball teams from around the globe. The eight team tournament is set and will showcase some of the greatest players in the world as China, Cuba, U.S.A., Canada, Netherlands, Japan, Korea, and Chinese Taipei will compete for the gold medal from August 13 – 23, 2008.

Tickets for the three games start at $6 and can be ordered by contacting the Long Beach Armada front office at 562-498-4487 and the Yuma Scorpions front office at 928-257-4700.

About the Golden Baseball League

The Golden Baseball League, Presented by Safeway, is an independent professional baseball league operating in western North America. The Golden Baseball League is comprised of the following eight teams in an 88 game schedule between May and September each year: The Chico Outlaws in Chico, CA; the Reno Silver Sox in Reno, NV; the Long Beach Armada in Long Beach, CA; the Orange County Flyers in Fullerton, CA; the St. George Roadrunners in St. George, UT; the Yuma Scorpions in Yuma; AZ; the Calgary Vipers in Calgary, Alberta, Canada; and the Edmonton Cracker Cats in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

In addition, the GBL owns and operates the six-team Arizona Winter League which plays from late January to the beginning of March and is considered the premier winter showcase league for professional and aspiring professional baseball players. The AWL’s six teams are the Palm Springs Chill, the Yuma Scorpions, the Blythe Heat, the San Diego Surf Dawgs, the Sonora Pilots, and the Canada Miners.

In three seasons of play, the GBL has had over 60 players purchased by major league organizations and has included over 30 former major league players including American League MVPs Rickey Henderson and Jose Canseco.

The Golden Baseball League is headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area town of Dublin, CA. For general information and/or ticket information, please visit our web site at or call (925) 226-2889.

John Sailors of East Bay Business Timesalso report.

Two Golden Baseball League teams will host three games this month against the Chinese Olympic baseball team in the run-up to the 2008 Summer Olympics being held in Beijing in August.

The games also come just before the May 22 season opening of the Golden Baseball League, an independent professional minor league that has its headquarters in Dublin.

The Long Beach Armada will host the Chinese national team in a two-game series at historic Blair Field in Long Beach on May 17 and 18.

The Chinese team will then travel to Yuma, Ariz., where it will play the Yuma Scorpions on May 21.

The games also will be a battle of former Los Angeles Dodgers. Coincidentally, all three teams are managed by former Dodgers. The Chinese team is managed by former Dodger All-Star and Major League manager Jim Lefebvre.

Long Beach is managed by former Dodger and 1981 World Series MVP Steve Yeager, and Yuma is managed by former Dodger All-Star Mike Marshall.

It is uncertain as yet whether the games will be televised or broadcast over the Internet, according to Kevin Outcalt, the GBL’s commissioner.

The games will serve as a tune-up for the Chinese team, which will go on to face the United States, Canada, Cuba, Japan, Chinese Taipei, Korea, and the Netherlands in Beijing in August.

The Chinese team had been practicing in Phoenix with help from Major League Baseball personnel, who contacted the GBL about possible practice games, Outcalt said. The games come at the end of the GBL’s short spring training period, when teams are normally playing exhibition games.

In preparation over the last week, the GBL has had a lot of success finding sponsors and cooking up promotions, Outcalt said. These include a Passport to China promotion with Chinese restaurants in the two cities.

The games also bring added prestige to the league. The GBL enters its fourth season this summer with a renewed sponsorship from Pleasanton-based Safeway Inc. that includes several joint programs such as baseball clinics and ticket giveaways in schools. Safeway also promotes the games in stores in host cities.

The GBL has added two Canadian teams this year, as well — the Calgary Vipers and the Edmonton Cracker-Cats, both of which left the established Northern League following a dispute over travel and scheduling.

The GBL is also in discussions with Ohlone College to build a stadium at the school’s Newark campus and field a Newark team. The league has for some time been working to launch a team in the East Bay.

Let’s see who will win the three games.

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