The World Baseball Cup (WBC), the baseball alternative to the World Cup, only smaller, with less professionals, and without an Olympic counterpart began today with the initial pool play. One Michigan player made the roster of the 16 teams, catcher Chris Berset.
Berset is the starting catcher for the Great Britain national team, although I have yet to peg his connection to the isles. In day one against Japan, the team favored to win Group D, Berset went 2 for 4 with 2 runs, a walk, and a strikeout. Berset actually reached base in four of his five plate appearances, as one was a fielder's choice. Chris also was thrown out at one point trying to score.
The final score was Japan 9, Great Britain 7. This being the first game of pool play, GB will need to win one of their next two games to stay alive.
The Brits will take on Nicaragua next, tomorrow in Zagreb, Croatia at a listed time of 10:30 local (Central European Time), or around 4:30am ET (if my math is correct). There are stat tracking services mentioned at the schedule page for the WBC, but according to BaseballGB, a blog covering the Great Britain baseball team, they are absolutely unreliable.They play host Croatia the following day at 16:30 local, 10:30am ET (again, if math is correct).
A final note, all the names Chris has been listed under during the WBC:
- Christ Berset
- Chrisopher Berset
- Christopher D. Berset (forgot where I saw this, but it does exist)
- Chris Berset
All of this has made for fun times trying to track Chris with google precision. I'll try to keep up with him as the WBC goes on. I've been waiting on the minor league seasons to wrap up to get a solid update on the alumni as well. Look for that next weekend.
UPDATE: I also found the GB Baseball blog, which had some interesting pictures of the field/scoreboard.