History of Baseball5 Clinics and Tournaments

[Ed. Note: An updated list (as of 18 February 2020) of all baseball5 events is attached to the bottom of this article.]

Since its introduction at the 2017 World Friendship Games in Burundi, the new sport of Baseball5 has spread like wildfire across the globe. It was included in the 2018 World Youth Games in Buenos Aires and has been added to this year’s Urban Youth Games in Los Angeles. The sport has been hailed as a peace-making tool in the Zaatari Refugee Camp, Gaza, and the African lakes. In the exactly 18 months since its introduction in Burundi, an incredible 39 countries have hosted or participated in clinics, games, or tournaments.

In a series of tweets on the sport’s official launch day of March 1, 2018, WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari explained the organisation’s idea for baseball5: “#baseball5 is a youth focused urban version of baseball and softball. It doesn’t require dedicated equipment nor venue. It closely aligns with IOC President Thomas Bach’s innovative Olympic Agenda 2020 vision” [link].

Indeed, baseball5 will become central to the WBSC’s push for permanent inclusion of baseball and softball in the Olympics.

“#baseball5 will become a key component in our Olympic and growth strategies in Europe, where the Paris 2024 Games will be staged, and wherever the Games may be held in the future,” added Fraccari. [link] “I also envision a future where #baseball5, as a five-on-five version of baseball and softball, can itself grow into an Olympic event [link]”.

There have been suggestions of an organisation calendar and world championships [link], plus a ranking system, but for now only Latvia and Mexico have announced the formation of leagues and only Thailand has hosted regular tournaments.

Interestingly, the most enthusiastic adopter of baseball5 has been Argentina, which has hosted five events in less than a year. In addition to Mexico and Thailand, Cuba, France, and Italy have had the most events, while Spain has made a strong push in the last few months.

The WBSC has aided the formalisation of the sport with a recently expanded anglophone rulebook [PDF] and Spanish-language instructional video [link], launching a page for baseball5 with a noticeably edgier, youthful feel [link]. It remains to be seen whether the sport will continue to grow at the same pace, but no sport comes to mind that has spread as quickly as this simplified version of baseball and softball.

Below are the 39 countries that have participated in a baseball5 event. It would be too hard to add in every coach from other countries that has attended a clinic, but it seems safe to say that at least 50 nations have been introduced to the sport.

Argentina: 13 February 2018 Game [link], 6-18 October 2018 World Youth Games introduction [link] and national team participation [link], 1 November school demonstration [link], 17 November University Tournament [link]

Bulgaria: 16 September 2018 International Tournament with mixed teams from Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Romania, and Serbia [link]

Burundi: 10-13 August 2017 Introduced at World Friendship Games [link], 20 August 2018 World Friendship Games [link]

Canada: 6 March 2019 Baseball Canada programme launched [link]

Colombia: 26 October 2018 Field installed at the U23 World Cup [link], 16-17 November 2018 [link]

Cuba: 23-25 November 2017 First Tournament ever [link], 24-25 October 2018 International Tournament with Cuba, France, Jamaica and Nicaragua in men’s, women’s, and mixed categories [link], 4-5 December 2018 Tournament [link]

Czech Republic: 12-13 May Clinic with RTB and Cuba vs. Czechs [link]

France: 10 February 2018 Demonstration game and Official launch [link], 11 September 2018 first Baseball5 field [link], 23 October 2018 Patriots Tournament [link]

Gambia: Two-week RTB clinic, January 2018 [link]

Gaza: Equipment delivered, October 2017 with October 2018 update [link]

Germany: 3 March 2018 demonstration [link]

Guadeloupe: 21-23 November 2018 [link]

Guatemala: 6 April 2018 First Game, 17 May 2018 Clinic [link]

Guyana: 23 August 2018 Clinic [link]

Hong Kong: 8-9 June 2018 Clinic [link], 29 August 2018 Clinic [link]

Hungary: 27 November 2018 founded [link]

Iran: 30 August-1 September Clinic [link]

Israel: 7 March 2019 Demonstration [link]

Italy: 10 May 2018 International Tournament with Cuba, France, and Italy [link] and youth demonstration [link], 12 May 2018 Seminar [link], 8 September 2018 Indoor Championship [link], 10 September 2018 Clinic [link]

Japan: 11 March 2018 Kanagawa Team formed [link], 26-27 January 2019 [link]

Jordan: 23-24 January 2019 Zaatari Refugee Camp [link]

Latvia: 11 February 2019 Latvia announces league formation [link]

Mexico: 15 May 2018 Coaches’ Clinic and announcement of LMB Baseball5 League [link], 9 June 2018 First Game in Aguascalientes [link], 30 June 2018 Field built in Mérida [link], 9 July 2018 League established [link], 13 February 2019 Memorandum signed [link]

Netherlands: 5 January 2019 Training at HSCN Nuenen [link], 24 February 2019 NK Tournament [link]

Pakistan: 5 February 2019 First game [link]

Philippines: 18 May 2018 Game introduced at Asian Jr Women’s Softball Championship [link]

Portugal: 14 June 2018 Launched [link]

Romania: 7-8 July 2018 Baseball field established, demonstration [link][link]

South Africa: 18-20 May 2018 U12, U13, U15 Tournaments at Arnold Classic Africa Festival [link]

Spain: 20-21 October 2018 Clinic and then “Barcelona City” International Tournament [link], 17 November 2018 Training [link], 8 February 2019 First field in Spain [link]

Switzerland: 24 February 2019 [link]

Tanzania: 28 July 2018 Clinic [link], 7 October 2018 [link], 14-15 December 2018 [link]

Thailand: 22 April 2018 [link], May 2018 Clinic, 7 September U15 Tournament [link], February 2019 U13 and U15 Tournament [link]

Tunisia: 6 July Introduced [link], 26 July 2018 First Tournament [link], 30-31 August 2018 Clinic [link], Baseball5 Tunisia [link], Kairouan club [link]

Uganda: 7 and 10 April 2018 [link], 15-17 February 2019 [link]

USA: 16 July Featured during MLB All-Star Week [link], 27 August Jr. Baseball5 Challenge [link]

Venezuela: 10-12 October 2018 Clinic [link][link], 18-20 November Juegos Nacionales Comunales [link][link]

Zambia: 25-26 February 2019 Clinic [link]

WBSC: 1 March 2018 Baseball5 Launch, 25 March 2018 Official Discipline, 3 May 2018 Spanish-language rules [link], 1 September 2018 first meeting of Baseball5 Commission [link], 5 November 2018 Sport added to 2019 Urban Games programme [link]

All photos copyright WBSC.

Baseball5 Clinics and Tournaments

 

National Team Tournaments

Bulgaria: 16 September 2018 International Tournament with mixed teams from Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Romania, and Serbia [link], 11-14 Feb 2020 National Championship, 11-14 Feb 2020 Balkan Indoor Championship [link]

Colombia: 18-20 April 2019 Americas Open
Cuba: 23-25 November 2017 First Tournament ever [link], 24-25 October 2018 International Tournament with Cuba, France, Jamaica and Nicaragua in men’s, women’s, and mixed categories [link], 6 Dec 2019 II National Championship [link]

France: 18-19 January 2020 French Baseball5 Open
Iran: 12 March 2019 National Championship [link],

Italy: 10 May 2018 International Tournament with Cuba, France, and Italy [link]

Kenya: 12 Sept 2019 First National Championship [link]

Netherlands: 24 February 2019 NK (National Championship) Tournament [link], 7 March 2020 NK (II National Championship) Tournament [link],

Spain: 20-21 October 2018 Clinic and then “Barcelona City” International Tournament [link],

7 July 2019 “1st International Tournament in Barcelona” with U15 and Open categories [link]

Thailand: 12 Sept 2019 National Championship [link]

Tunisia:  6-8 September 2019 1st U18 Mediterranean Open [link], 1 Dec 2019 First National Championship [link]

Ukraine: 12-13 January 2020 U15 National Championship [link]

Zambia: 25 Sept 2019 First University Championship [link] 

All Events (as of 18 February 2020)
Argentina: 13 February 2018 Game [link], 6-18 October 2018 World Youth Games introduction [link] and national team participation [link], 1 November school demonstration [link], 17 November University Tournament [link], 1 May Inter-school tournament [link], 15 May UFEDEM Games [link], 18 Oct 2019 New field [link], 18 Oct 2019 Demonstration in La Plata [link], 8 Nov 2019 Schools championship [link], 10 November 2019 Baseball5 presented to Sports Management programme [link], 29 Nov 2019 Baseball in Schools programme concludes, 1800 children taught [link],

Aruba: 16 Jan 2020 Demonstration in Aruba [link]

Australia: 8 May 2019 Sport Accord/Gold Coast Sports Festival [link], 13 May 2019 Gold Coast schools introduction [link], 30 Oct 2019 Australia announces baseball5 will be taught in schools [link], 15 Nov 2019 West Beach U15 Tournament [link]

Belgium: February 2019 First LFBBS Tournament [link], 29 Feb 2020 II LFBBS Tournament [link]

Bulgaria: 16 September 2018 International Tournament with mixed teams from Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Romania, and Serbia [link], 11-14 Feb 2020 National Championship, 11-14 Feb 2020 Balkan Indoor Championship [link]

Burundi: 10-13 August 2017 Introduced at World Friendship Games [link], 20 August 2018 World Friendship Games [link]

Canada: 6 March 2019 Baseball Canada programme launched [link], 29 March 2019 Baseball Québec demonstration [link], 10 May Nova Scotia Clinic [link], 31 May School event in Québec [link], 9 July 2019 Québec event [link], 29 September 2019 Québec Tournament [link] [link], 15 Nov 2019 Presented to physical education teachers in Québec [link], 4 Dec 2019 Presented to school board [link], 22 Jan 2019 League starts in Québec [link], 24 Jan 2019 Introduced to Manitoba [link], 1 Feb 2019 Taster session in Québec [link],

China: 30 April 2019 Clinic in Weihai [link],

Colombia: 26 October 2018 Field installed at the U23 World Cup [link], 16-17 November 2018 [link], 18-20 April Americas Open, 15-18 July Barranquilla Tournament [link]

Costa Rica: 14-15 December Baseball Festival [link]

Cuba: 23-25 November 2017 First Tournament ever [link], 24-25 October 2018 International Tournament with Cuba, France, Jamaica and Nicaragua in men’s, women’s, and mixed categories [link], 4-5 December 2018 Tournament [link], 11 March 2019 Sports University Exhibition [link], 7 April 2019 demonstration* [link], 28 Oct 2019 provincial competition [link], 6 Dec 2019 II National Championship [link] and La Habana repeats [link],

Czech Republic: 12-13 May Clinic with RTB and Cuba vs. Czechs [link], 1 Feb 2020 National Team Practice [link]

Estonia: Saku participating in 5 April Tournament in Latvia [link]

France: 10 February 2018 Demonstration game and Official launch [link], 11 September 2018 first Baseball5 field [link], 23 October 2018 Patriots Tournament [link], 2 October 2019 Dragons de Val d’Europe inaugurate field with demonstration [link], 7 Dec 2019 University demonstration [link], 18-19 January 2020 French Baseball5 Open,

Gambia: Two-week RTB clinic, January 2018 [link]

Gaza: Equipment delivered, October 2017 with October 2018 update [link], 10-12 March 2019 Championship [link]

Germany: 3 March 2018 demonstration [link]

Ghana: 23 May event [link], 18 June 2019 First field built [link]

Guadeloupe: 21-23 November 2018 [link]

Guatemala: 6 April 2018 First Game, 17 May 2018 Clinic [link]

Guyana: 23 August 2018 Clinic [link]

Hong Kong: 8-9 June 2018 Clinic [link], 29 August 2018 Clinic [link]

Hungary: 27 November 2018 founded [link]

India: 24 Oct 2019 Debut [link], November 2019 Clinics for 600 children in Cuttack [link]

Iran: 30 August-1 September Clinic [link], 12 March 2019 National Championship [link],

Israel: 7 March 2019 Demonstration [link]

Italy: 10 May 2018 International Tournament with Cuba, France, and Italy [link] and youth demonstration [link], 12 May 2018 Seminar [link], 8 September 2018 Indoor Championship [link], 10 September 2018 Clinic [link], 30 Jan 2020 Joins WBSC Baseball5 [link]

Japan: 11 March 2018 Kanagawa Team formed [link], 26-27 January 2019 [link], 13 July 2019 ENEOS All Together Challenge Baseball 5 [link], 23 June 2019 “One Year to Tokyo” Tournament in the Tokyo Dome [link], 28 Oct 2019 Risshosha Women’s Baseball Club holds taster [link], 5 November 2019 Friendly tournament [link], 29 Nov 2019 Kansai Women’s Baseball Federation offers demonstration [link], 8 Dec 2019 Niigata City demonstration [link], 19 Jan 2020 2019 Kansai Women’s Baseball Federation offers demonstration [link], 26 Jan Hitachi Prefecture clinic [link], 8 and 14 March Nippon Sport Science University clinic [link]

Jordan: 23-24 January 2019 Zaatari Refugee Camp [link]

Kenya: 12 Sept 2019 First National Championship [link]

Kosovo: 7 April 2019 Tournament [link]

Latvia: 11 February 2019 Latvia announces league formation [link], 5 April Tournament [link]

Malaysia: 15 July 2019 Coaches seminar [link]

Mexico: 15 May 2018 Coaches’ Clinic and announcement of LMB Baseball5 League [link], 9 June 2018 First Game in Aguascalientes [link], 30 June 2018 Field built in Mérida [link], 9 July 2018 League established [link], 13 February 2019 Memorandum signed [link], 21 Sept 2019 Demonstration in Irapuato [link], 7 Nov 2019 Presented at CONADE, 90 coaches trained [link][link], 3 Dec 2019 Pericos host baseball5 fair [link], 4 Dec 2019 Baseball5 fair in Puebla [link], 8-9 Dec 2019 Baseball5 fair in Oaxaca [link], 17 Dec 2019 Event in Xalapa [link], 18 Dec 2019 Baseball5 fair in Poza Rica [link], 23 Dec 2019 Baseball5 fair in Pachuca [link], 26 Dec 2019 Baseball5 fair in Querétaro [link], 30 Dec 2019 Baseball5 fair in Morelia [link], 28 Jan 2020 Baseball5 fair in Celaya [link], 30 Jan 2020 Baseball5 fair in Guanajuato [link], 1 Feb 2020 Baseball5 fair in León [link],

Myanmar: Ayako Rokkaku introduces baseball5 [link],

Netherlands: 5 January 2019 Training at HSCN Nuenen [link], 24 February 2019 NK (National Championship) Tournament [link], 24 Jan 2020 National team tryouts [link], 7 March 2020 NK (II National Championship) Tournament [link],

New Caledonia: 26 May Clinic in Noumea [link], 25 June 2019 10-Team Tournament [link], 20 Sept 2019 Played on International University Sports Day [link]

New Zealand: 28 June 2019 Christchurch Tournament [link]

Pakistan: 5 February 2019 First game [link], 2 November 2019 Physical education teachers training session [link],

Palestine: 21 January 2020 Report on the sport [link]

Papua New Guinea: 6 October 2019 Seminar and Demonstration [link],

Philippines: 18 May 2018 Game introduced at Asian Jr Women’s Softball Championship [link]

Portugal: 14 June 2018 Launched [link]

Romania: 7-8 July 2018 Baseball field established, demonstration [link][link]

South Africa: 18-20 May 2018 U12, U13, U15 Tournaments at Arnold Classic Africa Festival [link]

Spain: 20-21 October 2018 Clinic and then “Barcelona City” International Tournament [link], 17 November 2018 Training [link], 8 February 2019 First field in Spain [link], 7 July 2019 “1st International Tournament in Barcelona” with U15 and Open categories [link], 15 Oct. 2019 Training session in North Barcelona [link], 18 Oct 2019 Training session in Tarragona [link], 27 Nov 2019 School tournament [link], 19 Jan 2020 Permanent baseball5 field opened in Tarragona [link],

Sweden: 15 Dec 2019 Introduced to Skovde Saints [link]

Switzerland: 24 February 2019 [link], 13 October 2019 WBSC sets up field during Olympic Week [link],

Taiwan: 12 August 2019 [link]

Tanzania: 28 July 2018 Clinic [link], 7 October 2018 [link], 14-15 December 2018 [link]

Thailand: 22 April 2018 [link], May 2018 Clinic, 7 September U15 Tournament [link], February 2019 U13 and U15 Tournament [link], 12 Sept 2019 National Championship [link]

Tunisia: 6 July Introduced [link], 26 July 2018 First Tournament [link], 30-31 August 2018 Clinic [link], Baseball5 Tunisia [link], Kairouan club [link], 6-8 September 2019 1st U18 Mediterranean Open [link], 1 Dec 2019 First National Championship [link], 27 Jan 2020 Baseball5 to be played at more youth centres [link]

Turkey: 30 March 2019 Clinic [link], 22 May 2019 Event [link]

Uganda: 7 and 10 April 2018 [link], 15-17 February 2019 [link]

Ukraine: 12-13 January 2020 U15 National Championship [link]

UK: 20 May 2019 Training [link], 28 June 2019 First Tournament [link], 10 September 2019 Liz Knight presents baseball5 at Active London [link], 18 September 2019 House of Sport game [link], 21 Nov 2019 House of Sport game [link], 8 Jan 2020 New City Primary School programme [link], 16 Feb 2020 Worcester Sorcerers game [link]

USA: 16 July 2018 Featured during MLB All-Star Week [link], 27 August Jr. Baseball5 Challenge [link]

Venezuela: 10-12 October 2018 Clinic [link][link], 18-20 November Juegos Nacionales Comunales [link][link], 7 April 2019 Caracas Tournament [link], 3 June 2019 Lara Coaching Seminar [link], 18 June 2019 Lyceum Tournament [link], 5 July 2019 Seminar in Bolivia [link], 21 July 2019 in XVIII Juegos Deportivos Nacionales Estudiantiles [link], 6 Sept 2019 training course in Aragua [link], 22 Jan 2020 Caracas League started [link],

Zambia: 25-26 February 2019 Clinic [link], 25 Sept 2019 First University Championship [link]

WBSC Milestones (not included in events total): 1 March 2018 Baseball5 Launch, 25 March 2018 Official Discipline, 3 May 2018 Spanish-language rules [link], 1 September 2018 first meeting of Baseball5 Commission [link], 5 November 2018 Sport added to 2019 Urban Games programme [link], 14 March 2019 WBSC Meeting with Laos NOC and Federation [link], 11 July 2019 WBSC-Asia Baseball5 Commission established [link], 25 July 2019 Game Management System [link], 20 November 2019 Workshop at WBSC Congress [link], 8 Jan 2020 Baseball5 included in Dakar Youth Olympics [link], 22 Jan 2020 Quotas announced for first World Cup [link], 7 Feb 2020 Teams announced for European Championship [link], 11 Feb 2020 Pools announced for European Championship [link]

 

*Australia, China, Fiji, Ghana, and Lithuania had representatives at the event, they are included in the country total. Since then, Australia and China have hosted their first events.

63 countries (does not include all coaches at clinics), 177 events

 

Last updated 18 February 2020.

About Gabriel Fidler

Extra Innings UK covers baseball around the world, focussing on the sport at the national team level, with features on prominent players, scouting reports, and occasional breaking news. We are fully credentialled by MLB and have covered the World Baseball Classic, continental championships, and the U.S. minor leagues.
This entry was posted in Africa, Argentina, Asia, Baseball5, Bulgaria, Burundi, Canada, Caribbean, Central America, Colombia, Cuba, Czech Republic, Europe, France, Gambia, Guatemala, Guyana, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iran, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Mexico, Netherlands, North America, Pakistan, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, South Africa, South America, Spain, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Uganda, USA, Venezuela, Zambia and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.