02/11/2019 - 17/11/2019


Hosted by:   JPN MEX TPE KOR

II Premier12 2019 - Official Payoff

Players, managers praise Premier12 and its international success

Players, managers praise Premier12 and its international success
"The Premier12 helps the internationalization and the globalization of baseball, this is a fact. The game needs to be global," stated WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari.

Managers and players heaped praise on the Premier12 following the successful conclusion of the second edition in Tokyo on Sunday. The status of the tournament and the growth of international baseball were key factors on why the key actors in international baseball's flagship event were unanimous in their support for Premier12 and the future of international baseball.

David Nilsson, manager of the Australian Baseball National Team, was categoric: “Premier12 has been a fantastic tournament from every point of view. Having the best 12 baseball programs in the world competing in different places is a wonderful concept, and exposes the world to a lot of great players from different countries.”

Mexican skipper Juan Gabriel Castro agreed. “It’s been a great experience. It was my first international event, and I liked the tournament. A great organization in Guadalajara and here in Tokyo, two incredible hosts. It motivates everyone to keep participating in these kind of events.”

Atsushi Saito, who was named NPB Commissioner two years ago, also praised the tournament. "We enjoyed very exciting games during the Premier12. All the participants did an excellent job and the fans enjoyed it very much. Global baseball is a lot of fun. The level of the teams was very high. Japan enjoyed the tournament the most, of course. I want to congratulate every team. They were able to create a lot of excitement."

The participating players were in agreement on one thing: the pride and honour of wearing their national team's uniform.

USA reliever Noah Song also had his first taste of international baseball at the WBSC Premier12. "It's awesome. Baseball makes everybody come together. We don't speak the same language, but we do play at the same rules. The game really is universal".

Lin Che-Hsuan also noted how important is to wear Chinese Taipei uniform. "I want to thank my family and the fans supporting us. To wear Chinese Taipei uniform is really an honour for me. Hopefully I have another chance to use this uniform in the future".

Australian outfielder Aaron Whitefield feels the same way. “It’s always a pleasure when you represent your country. I’m proud of it, it’s such an honour. Any time I can still represent Australia is a huge honour for me.”

Mexican Arturo Reyes agreed. “The sense of pride, especially for my family watching back home. Putting on this jersey, you’re representing a country. When you have the name of your country across your chest is more than a name on you back or any other name.”

Korean outfielder Jung-Hoo Lee also said “It’s an honour to be part of the national team, as my father did. It’s such a great honour.”

And WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari has the last word saying: "The Premier12 helps the internationalization and the globalization of baseball, this is a fact. We have some major international baseball players participating in the Premier12 and it's their star power which will continue to help the game go global."