OTTAWA- World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) announced today the competing nations for the inaugural “Premier 12” - the new flagship pro baseball world championship that will feature National Teams from baseball's 12 highest-ranked nations, including Canada, by virtue of a 7th place ranking.
Canada’s 7th place ranking remains unchanged from 2013 after achieving a 6th place ranking in both 2012 and 2011.
The Premier 12 is being billed as “baseball's highest-ranked international competition, awarding US$ multi-millions in prize money” by the WBSC. The tournament is tentatively scheduled to take place in November 2015 in Taiwan.
In addition to Canada, the other countries slated to participate include Japan (#1), USA (#2), Cuba (#3), Chinese Taipei (#4), Netherlands (#5), Dominican Republic (#6), South Korea (#8), Puerto Rico (#9), Venezuela (#10), Italy (#11) and Mexico (#12).
“WBSC congratulates the 2015 Class of Premier 12 nations,” WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari said in a press release. “These nations represent baseball’s best that will unite and deliver an exciting – and unmatched competitive parity – at the inaugural Premier 12. Any one of these elite nations can come out victorious in 2015 and leave The Premier 12 as the reigning World Champions.”
The last time the WBSC/International Baseball Federation (IBAF) hosted an international competition at the senior level was in 2011 in Panama when the event was know as the “World Cup”. Canada came out of that event with a bronze medal reclaiming the prize that they won at the 2009 IBAF World Cup in Italy.
With the Pan Am Games baseball competition scheduled to take place in Ajax next July, the 2015 calendar year is shaping up to be a busy one for the Senior National Team with two scheduled events. The most recent competition for the squad came back in March 2013 at the World Baseball Classic.
2014 WBSC World Baseball Rankings