Anubis2051

2017 World Baseball Classic

244 posts in this topic

I think it's cool for a player with the heritage to get to play for their ancestor's country. I'd say you must have some lineage though. Would not want to see them just open it up to the highest bidding country to "buy" players though. Has to be some real connection. 

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51 minutes ago, Ice_Cap said:

So what? I'm pulling for Israel for the same reason. No harm in broadcasting that on a sports-centric message board. 

 

As for the lack of Israelis on Team Israel? Hey man. It's the WBC. If Italin-Americans can play for Team Italy? And Dutch-Americans can play for Team Neatherlands? Let some Jewish American players play for Team Israel. 

Ideally the sport of baseball would grow to the point that real true-blue national teams would compete up and down the standings, but you gotta start somewhere.  

You do know Jewish people aren't a race, right?

Also, most of the players before their trip had never actually been to Israel.

Someone who is a generation removed from the country or has citizenship is what I would consider eligible to play for the national team

What you are describing isn't national representation, it's just teams made up of distant relatives. By that logic both Taipei and China should be playing on a single team. You're picking and choosing what you want to allow rather than just properly defining it. This is supposed to be a substitute for the Olympic games but follows none of the logic that the Olympic games does.

 

17 minutes ago, Big Yellow Flag said:

Both statements are false. There are two Israelis on the team, Shlomo Lipetz and Dean Kremer, although Kremer was born and raised stateside. In addition, the bullpen catcher, Tal Erel, is active duty IDF and was given leave to go to Seoul and Tokyo to do this, and much of the support staff (I believe including one coach) was Israeli.

 

I've gotten dozens of messages over the past week from friends and family in Israel, asking me to explain baseball things because they're trying to watch and they're missing a key point or two.

 

And even if neither of those statements are true, so what? A bunch of teams in WBC play are built on players not from the host country (Italy, the Netherlands, and Israel to name a few). MLB's goal in including them is to grow the game around the world. We'll see if it works, but for right now I'm more than content to put on my Team Israel cap and root for my people.

If team Israel had qualified and reached the point they did with home grown players then it would be a sporting achievement for Israel. All of the countries you mention really don't care whatsoever about baseball. Israel is more interested in soccer, so are both of the other countries. The thing is though, this competition has no legitimacy when a few teams restrict who they can choose while the others pick willy nilly whatever players they can get away with claiming as their own.

I have some people I know in Israel who tell me the country really isn't paying attention or those who are view it as a Jewish achievement rather than their own achievement as a country. While Israel is made up primary of those who are of Jewish descent there are many who are not.

You are right though, they do have a couple Israeli players.

 

11 minutes ago, hawk36 said:

I think it's cool for a player with the heritage to get to play for their ancestor's country. I'd say you must have some lineage though. Would not want to see them just open it up to the highest bidding country to "buy" players though. Has to be some real connection. 

Heritage is fine, I have no issue with that as long as we have proper limits on what is allowed. FIFA has had major issues with this is recent years, with major players such as Costa coming into debate. Now, while baseball is no where near the popularity of soccer (no sport comes close) I still think in order to protect the integrity of the game that restrictions need to be placed. If baseball wants to be an olympic sport it has to apply proper restrictions.

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19 minutes ago, Solaris said:

You do know Jewish people aren't a race right?

I'm Jewish. And trained as historian. I'm also the son of a man from a Jewish family and a mother who converted to Judaism. I think I have a healthy perspective and a solid handle on what Jewish ethnicity and faith "is." 

See, Judaism is both a religion and an ethnic group. "Race" isn't technically correct, for a number of reasons. Still? "Judaism" as a group represents a distinct ethnic group within the Semitic subsect of the "Caucasian race."

Now race itself is a social construct, but if you want to use those terms? Well that's how it fits together.

 

The thing with Judaism is that it's an old concept. It predates "universal" faiths such as Christianity and Islam. Judaism is better understood in terms of Hinduism, or old polytheistic faiths of the Egyptians, Greeks, and Nords. The faith (Judaism, in this case) and the ethnic groups (the Jewish people) are inherently intertwined. 

That's why you get terms like "the children/people of Israel," because part of the faith is embracing the heritage that traces back to, yes, the ancient Israelite nation and faith. 

There is conversion, but it's celebrated as welcoming a newcomer into the "tribe" as it were.

So no, Judaism isn't just a religion. It's not a race either, but "ethnicity" certainly qualifies. 

 

Further, DNA and archeological studies have both pointed to contemporary Jewish populations having genetic and cultural ties to the ancient Israelite nation and region. So again. If an Italian-American player who has never even been to Italy can play for Team Italy than a Jewish American playing for Team Israel isn't this huge issue. 

 

If you want to argue that the qualifications for national team selection in the WBC across the board are too broad? Ok. I don't disagree. 

Baseball is siding with a liberal interpretation to promote the game globally though, and that's fine if the long-term goal is the global expansion of the sport.

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2 hours ago, Ice_Cap said:

I'm Jewish. And trained as historian. I'm also the son of a man from a Jewish family and a mother who converted to Judaism. I think I have a healthy perspective and a solid handle on what Jewish ethnicity and faith "is." 

See, Judaism is both a religion and an ethnic group. "Race" isn't technically correct, for a number of reasons. Still? "Judaism" as a group represents a distinct ethnic group within the Semitic subsect of the "Caucasian race."

Now race itself is a social construct, but if you want to use those terms? Well that's how it fits together.

 

The thing with Judaism is that it's an old concept. It predates "universal" faiths such as Christianity and Islam. Judaism is better understood in terms of Hinduism, or old polytheistic faiths of the Egyptians, Greeks, and Nords. The faith (Judaism, in this case) and the ethnic groups (the Jewish people) are inherently intertwined. 

That's why you get terms like "the children/people of Israel," because part of the faith is embracing the heritage that traces back to, yes, the ancient Israelite nation and faith. 

There is conversion, but it's celebrated as welcoming a newcomer into the "tribe" as it were.

So no, Judaism isn't just a religion. It's not a race either, but "ethnicity" certainly qualifies. 

 

Further, DNA and archeological studies have both pointed to contemporary Jewish populations having genetic and cultural ties to the ancient Israelite nation and region. So again. If an Italian-American player who has never even been to Italy can play for Team Italy than a Jewish American playing for Team Israel isn't this huge issue. 

 

If you want to argue that the qualifications for national team selection in the WBC across the board are too broad? Ok. I don't disagree. 

Baseball is siding with a liberal interpretation to promote the game globally though, and that's fine if the long-term goal is the global expansion of the sport.

So, when only a handful people who live in the country are on the national team, this doesn't raise a white flag?

I want to reiterate this is a national team sport. Essentially Team Israel is a bunch of Jewish Americans playing baseball. How do you want to expand the game in say, Korea, if Korea is eliminated at the expense of another team that doesn't represent the talent that it claims to?

Is that fair?

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5 hours ago, hawk36 said:

I think it's cool for a player with the heritage to get to play for their ancestor's country. I'd say you must have some lineage though. Would not want to see them just open it up to the highest bidding country to "buy" players though. Has to be some real connection. 

I liked how Pizza played for Italy, Rizzo too. ARod swapped from 06 USA to 09 Dominican Republic tho. 

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5 hours ago, Solaris said:

So, when only a handful people who live in the country are on the national team, this doesn't raise a white flag?

I want to reiterate this is a national team sport. Essentially Team Israel is a bunch of Jewish Americans playing baseball. How do you want to expand the game in say, Korea, if Korea is eliminated at the expense of another team that doesn't represent the talent that it claims to?

Is that fair?

I'm saying you may be overthinking this whole "WBC" thing.

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10 hours ago, Ice_Cap said:

I'm Jewish. And trained as historian. I'm also the son of a man from a Jewish family and a mother who converted to Judaism. I think I have a healthy perspective and a solid handle on what Jewish ethnicity and faith "is." 

See, Judaism is both a religion and an ethnic group. "Race" isn't technically correct, for a number of reasons. Still? "Judaism" as a group represents a distinct ethnic group within the Semitic subsect of the "Caucasian race."

Now race itself is a social construct, but if you want to use those terms? Well that's how it fits together.

 

The thing with Judaism is that it's an old concept. It predates "universal" faiths such as Christianity and Islam. Judaism is better understood in terms of Hinduism, or old polytheistic faiths of the Egyptians, Greeks, and Nords. The faith (Judaism, in this case) and the ethnic groups (the Jewish people) are inherently intertwined. 

That's why you get terms like "the children/people of Israel," because part of the faith is embracing the heritage that traces back to, yes, the ancient Israelite nation and faith. 

There is conversion, but it's celebrated as welcoming a newcomer into the "tribe" as it were.

So no, Judaism isn't just a religion. It's not a race either, but "ethnicity" certainly qualifies. 

 

Further, DNA and archeological studies have both pointed to contemporary Jewish populations having genetic and cultural ties to the ancient Israelite nation and region. So again. If an Italian-American player who has never even been to Italy can play for Team Italy than a Jewish American playing for Team Israel isn't this huge issue. 

 

If you want to argue that the qualifications for national team selection in the WBC across the board are too broad? Ok. I don't disagree. 

Baseball is siding with a liberal interpretation to promote the game globally though, and that's fine if the long-term goal is the global expansion of the sport.

So do we get college credits for reading this?

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2 hours ago, Ice_Cap said:

I'm saying you may be overthinking this whole "WBC" thing.

 

Right.  


I hate to be the one defending national teams, because I am ideologically opposed to their existence.  But, since I have already compromised my principles by my inability to resist the Italy hat, I might as well go ahead.


There is nothing improper about setting rules that allow players who aren't citizens or residents of the countries they represent, as long as all teams operate by the same rules.  Now, if you want to criticise the Israel team on this score, for using an eligibility standard that is available to no other team, then I will agree entirely with that.  But the idea of loose eligibility rules is conceptually unobjectionable.   


FIFA allows a player to compete for a national team based either on grandparentage or on his own residency.  These standards are tighter than those of the WBC; but they still allow for players to have some choice.   That is appropriate for the sport of football, which is firmly established globally.  The WBC's more lenient rules, essentially allowing on a national team any player who could apply for citizenship in that country, are appropriate for the sport of baseball, which is still fighting for recognition as a worldwide sport.


Baseball is growing in popularity in several European countries.  So, while the Italian team now consists primarily of Americans and Canadians of Italian ancestry with only a handful of Italians from Italy, the hope is that one day the talent pool in Italy itself will be such that most of that team's players can come from there.  This is a reasonable goal, and one which is in reach, considering the growing seriousness with which the sport is played in that country. There has already been one Major Leaguer from Italy, Alex Liddi.  And the professional league in Italy is run by ever-higher standards; so we will probably see a few more eventually.  

 

The point is that the the Italy team and all the other teams at the WBC are tools to effectuate this worldwide growth of the sport.  And, whatever strategy is best to reach that end is the one that should be used.

 

The countries in which the sport is already strong (the U.S., Japan, Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, South Korea, Venezuela, Canada) don't face the challenges that confront Italy.  They would excel no matter what standards were used in an international tournament.  But the point of the tournament is to present baseball as a game played around the world, in order to counter the erroneous perception that it is played only in the U.S.

 

A major step in that direction was the dramatic scene that played out at the last Olympic baseball tournament in 2008, when China played Chinese Taipei in Beijing.  Baseball will be back in the Olympics for one time only in 2020 in Tokyo; and this year's WBC is the last edition of this tournament before those Olympics.  So any conversation or critique regarding the WBC has to keep in mind the ultimate goal of promoting baseball on the world stage.

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8 hours ago, Solaris said:

So, when only a handful people who live in the country are on the national team, this doesn't raise a white flag?

I want to reiterate this is a national team sport. Essentially Team Israel is a bunch of Jewish Americans playing baseball. How do you want to expand the game in say, Korea, if Korea is eliminated at the expense of another team that doesn't represent the talent that it claims to?

Is that fair?

The US uses players with American heritage that live in Germany for our mens soccer team. Where you live shouldn't matter. That being said, the majority of the Dutch team is players from Curacao, a former Dutch colony. If baseball were on the same level internationally that soccer and basketball were we probably wouldn't see these team comprised in this way but it is what it is. MLB has a vested interestin making these outposts relevant to bring more interest into tournaments like this. At the end of the day that's all they want leading into the Tokyo Olympics where baseball and softball could be back in play.

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2 hours ago, MJWalker45 said:

The US uses players with American heritage that live in Germany for our mens soccer team. Where you live shouldn't matter. That being said, the majority of the Dutch team is players from Curacao, a former Dutch colony. If baseball were on the same level internationally that soccer and basketball were we probably wouldn't see these team comprised in this way but it is what it is. MLB has a vested interestin making these outposts relevant to bring more interest into tournaments like this. At the end of the day that's all they want leading into the Tokyo Olympics where baseball and softball could be back in play.

 

The Curacao guys playing for Netherlands is the one that never sits right with me. It's like denying Puerto Rico a team.

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14 hours ago, Solaris said:

 

11 hours ago, Solaris said:

So, when only a handful people who live in the country are on the national team, this doesn't raise a white flag?

I want to reiterate this is a national team sport. Essentially Team Israel is a bunch of Jewish Americans playing baseball. How do you want to expand the game in say, Korea, if Korea is eliminated at the expense of another team that doesn't represent the talent that it claims to?

Is that fair?

 

As someone else mentioned, this is not uncommon in soccer.  Case in point -- Thomas Dooley (see below).  He was born in Germany to a German mother and US serviceman father.  If memory serves me, he never set foot in the United States before playing for USMNT. To me, that doesn't make his contribution to US soccer any less legitimate.  I also don't think it was unfair to Colombia that they lost in the 1994 World Cup to a team that included Dooley and Roy Wegerle, who was born in South Africa and became a naturalized U.S. citizen.

 

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Does anyone know if there is a solid rule for eligibility? How far back the lineage can go? For example I am totally fine with if one of your parents are from the country. Probably fine with grandparents since building competitive teams from non-baseball countries is a challenge. But great grandparents may be stretching it too far. Just wondering. 

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7 minutes ago, hawk36 said:

Does anyone know if there is a solid rule for eligibility? How far back the lineage can go? For example I am totally fine with if one of your parents are from the country. Probably fine with grandparents since building competitive teams from non-baseball countries is a challenge. But great grandparents may be stretching it too far. Just wondering. 

 

The criterion for a non-citizen and non-resident is that the player be qualified to hold a passport for that country.  

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1 minute ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

 

The criterion for a non-citizen and non-resident is that the player be qualified to hold a passport for that country.  

So do they have to hold a passport OR just be qualified to hold one? Just be qualified seems odd since technically you or I could be "qualified" to hold a passport if a country wanted us to have one. 

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4 minutes ago, hawk36 said:

So do they have to hold a passport OR just be qualified to hold one? Just be qualified seems odd since technically you or I could be "qualified" to hold a passport if a country wanted us to have one. 

 

The player does not have to be a passport holder; he just has to be qualfied to have a passport.  So this leaves it up to each country's laws.

Most countries have laws about qualifying for passports based on various degrees of lineage.  (Israel has a law allowing just about any Jewish person to qualify for citizenship -- this is the basis on which I would agree that the stocking of that team is not right, since that country's naturalisation law is very different to any other country's.)

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Just now, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

 

The player does not have to be a passport holder; he just has to be qualfied to have a passport.  So this leaves it up to each country's laws.

Most countries have laws about qualifying for passports based on various degrees of lineage.  (Israel has a law allowing just about any Jewish person to qualify for citizenship -- this is the basis on which I would agree that the stocking of that team is not right, since that country's naturalisation law is very different to any other country's.)

Yes, that's kind of too wide open but I can understand. Surprised the Vatican doesn't field a team with the best Catholic baseball players in the world :)

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13 minutes ago, hawk36 said:

Yes, that's kind of too wide open but I can understand. Surprised the Vatican doesn't field a team with the best Catholic baseball players in the world :)

 

There should be an Esperanto baseball team, as there is in football!  The Esperanto F.A., called TEFA (Tutmonda Esperanta Futbala Asocio) is a member of the N.F.-Board, a confederation of F.A.s that are not recognised by FIFA.  Our Selektitaro have played matches against a team representing an association of Slovak towns, against a team representing the ethnic Armenians of Argentina, and against the national team of Western Sahara (a fellow N.F.-Board member).  

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How bout them uniforms

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8 hours ago, hawk36 said:

Does anyone know if there is a solid rule for eligibility? How far back the lineage can go? For example I am totally fine with if one of your parents are from the country. Probably fine with grandparents since building competitive teams from non-baseball countries is a challenge. But great grandparents may be stretching it too far. Just wondering. 

 

7 hours ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

 

The criterion for a non-citizen and non-resident is that the player be qualified to hold a passport for that country.  

You can also have parents or grandparents from that country as well. Bruce Chen is Panamanian and played for Panama in the past but this year played for China because of his grandparents who were born in China. 

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