Switzerland's first-ever e-baseball champions crowned

Switzerland's first-ever e-baseball champions crowned
The live-stream on Twitch, YouTube and Facebook had over 5,000 unique viewers, who logged in over 14,800 minutes of viewing time.

Livio Bundi and Bruno Albrecht are the first champions of the Swiss Baseball E-Sports League (SBEL), Europe's first-ever official e-baseball competition, which launched following WBSC's green lighting and recognition of e-baseball/softball competitions in late 2020.

Bundi won the Junior (U-34) 12-team league, as his Zurich Barracudas defeated the Therwil Flyers, 7-4.

"I have been playing [this baseball video game] for about five years," Bundi told the WBSC. "I'm pretty experienced with this game. I think a gamer needs good hand-eye coordination, just like in baseball [that you'd play on the field]."

As he describes the final, Bundi mentions "solo home-runs" and his "huge, five-run inning."

"I've been playing baseball for more than 10 years," added Bundi. "I've participated in many European Qualifiers at the youth level (U-15, U-18, U-23) and at the top level with the Swiss National Team. Right now, I'm just trying to keep in shape throughout the COVID-19 restrictions."

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Bundi also served as the coordinator of the SBEL.

"The National Federation and Senior eSports offered me [the project] to coordinate the league. The experience was really cool. I got to meet a lot of great gamers, and it was a great honour. It was also a great success since I won it all."

Albrecht (pictured above) won the eight-team Senior, or Over 34, league. His Embrach Mustangs shut-out the Therwil Flyers, 4-0.

René Merkli, a former player of the Zuerich Barracudas, is the founder of Senior e-Sports, the platform that hosted the SBEL."The development team made a great effort to bring the SBEL into our platform/app." commented Merkli. "In the beginning, we had some questions from the players who had never used the app. It all turned out very smooth and stable, in the end. We also managed to publish schedules and results on the Swiss Federation's website."

The first edition of the SBEL proved a success.

"The live stream on Twitch, YouTube and Facebook had over 5,000 unique viewers, watching over 14,800 minutes, which is a pretty good figure in the Swiss market," said Merkli.

The league also received coverage in the national press (Luzerner Zeitung, St. Galler Tagblatt, Basler Zeitung, Jungfrau Zeitung) and Digitech.ch, the biggest online shopping platform in the country, according to Merkli.

The SBEL will have a second season.

"We don't have any dates," Merkli said on a final note. "We are still planning. We will work on the feedback we received. We want to improve the SBEL before the second season starts."

Global Game