Results tagged ‘ WBC ’

Baseball’s booming in New Zealand!

mlb auckland field

New Zealand is destined to become a baseball powerhouse if Ryan Flynn , CEO of Baseball New Zealand has anything to do with it and by the way he does.   We had the chance to tour the country looking at potential field locations with several of the board members from baseball New Zealand a couple months ago. We toured sites in both Christchurch and Auckland.   In addition to looking for new field locations we also held  MLB’s First field maintenance clinics in this country.   Members from local club leagues that manage their fields came out to learn a few tips on dimensions and mound construction. and both were well attended.   Peter Elliot is on the NZ baseball board and did a outstanding job with the press in Christchurch as did MLB’s infamous Jim Small who heads up Asia/Oceania development.

Murray CHCH 6

According to recent NZ baseball stats, the growth of the game in NZ has increased over 1000% in 3 years. They now have about 6000+ members.   New Zealand is predominately a fastpitch softball country for the men’s sports.   Kids (guys and girls)  grow up playing softball which is pretty cool.  They have tons of softball tournaments and leagues.  In most countries around the world,  baseball & softball organizations share the same office space and fields.  Hopefully this will become the case in NZ.

In the meantime the NZ national team will prepare for the 2016 World Baseball Classic Qualifier  ( WBCQ) to be held in Sydney mid-February.  In the last WBCQ they almost pulled off an upset over Taiwan.  Let’s just say they learned a lot from the 2012 WBCQ and are planning to go much further next year.  Should be a great tournament with Australia, South Africa and the Philippines competing at Blacktown Sportspark in Australia.  This was the former home of Competition field 2 for the 2000 Sydney Olympic games.   Spent a bit of time at that ballpark over the years.  Its going to be a great tournament!  A big thanks to Riki and Dan T for helping with all the logistics around the islands!


One of the sites we walked actually came with built in fertilizer spreaders and mowers!

( just kidding)   Actually the land in Christchurch was beautiful and abundant for baseball fields

New Taipei City Stadium prepares for 2012 WBC qualifier

New Taipei City stadium also known as Xinzhuang stadium is preparing for the WBC qualifier.  New pitching mounds and bullpens along with new grass and a renovated infield surface will provide an improved playing surface.  The ballpark is familiar to big events  it has recently Hosted the MLB All Star Tour and past World Baseball Cup tournaments.   A smaller ballpark that seats about 12500 the venue will also feature some updates in the locker rooms and batting tunnels.  Don’t forget to check out the games later this month.  They begin November 15th.  New Zealand, Taiwan, Thailand and the Philippines.

Estadio Rod Carew to replace field for 2012 WBC

After 12 years it looks like Rod Carew stadium in Panama will get a new field.    After working with a great crew and staff on this field for many years,  Pandeportes and the LOC committee  is replacing the field before the 2012 World Baseball Classic qualifier in November.

The WBC is considerd the new Baseball World Cup.  The last World Cup was held here 2 years ago.   During the last world cup at Rod Carew, we had several rain outs due to pour drainage  of the outfield and infield turf areas.  The USA vs.Canada Bronze medal game was cancelled and we almost had to cancel the final.     With the rainy season ( Oct-Nov)  typically dropping an average of 12 to 15   inches of rain each month, a new field with an updated drainage system  was badly needed.   The old system served its purpose over the years. In fact back in 2003 during the Olympic Qualifier we had similar rains fall but the field was only a few years old and handled the water pretty well.

The work plan is to remove a couple feet of material which includes about 6inches of thatch of 12 year old Bermuda along with a series of geo clothe fabrics.  We will be adding a new drainage system, irrigation system,  10″inches of sand for the grass,  and the new sod will be zoysia Turfgrass.  We used zoysia on the new fields in Aguadulce and Santiago when they were renovated in 2010 for the World Cup.   They have performed very well.  Along with the  new field there will upgrades to the stadium drainage and locker rooms.  Thanks again to Gil, Guy, Lenny, Ruben and Lauren for making this happen!