No. 10 Venezuela confirms Luis Sojo as manager for 2015 WBSC Premier12

No. 10 Venezuela confirms Luis Sojo as manager for 2015 WBSC Premier12
03/07/2015

CARACAS – The leaders of the Venezuelan Baseball Federation (FVB) have entrusted Luis Sojo, 49, to guide the Men’s National Team at the 2015 WBSC Premier12, which is summoning baseball’s Top 12 nations to Japan and Taiwan in November for a global battle to defend their country’s name and ranking position.

CARACAS – The leaders of the Venezuelan Baseball Federation (FVB) have entrusted Luis Sojo, 49, to guide the Men’s National Team at the 2015 WBSC Premier12, which is summoning baseball’s Top 12 nations to Japan and Taiwan in November for a global battle to defend their country’s name and ranking position.

Sojo, whose curriculum vitae as a player included four MLB championships with the New York Yankees, last commanded the Vinotintos at the WBSC-sanctioned 2013 World Baseball Classic, where Venezuela exited after its three games in the first round — prompting a decline from eighth to tenth in the WBSC Baseball World Rankings.

Venezuela, considered one of baseball’s superpowers, is the second-lowest ranked nation in Group B – where the Vinotintos will have to square off against No. 1 Japan, No. 2 United States, No. 6 Dominican Republic, No. 8 South Korea and No. 12 Mexico.

“In Premier12, we will have to defend our country’s name and place in the baseball world,” said FVB President Edwin Zerpa “This is about the pride of our entire nation – one team that represents every Venezuelan. Wearing ‘Venezuela’ across your chest and representing the National Selection is a very big responsibility and the highest possible honour.”

Venezuela will open on the world stage against Mexico at Taoyuan International Baseball Stadium in Taiwan on 10 November. (See Venezuela’s Opening Round schedule)

The FVB will be meeting with Venezuela’s sports ministry and has scheduled a press conference on Monday, 6 July in the nation’s capital to speak on the roadmap for the WBSC Premier12 flagship.

The biggest international baseball tournament on the calendar, the Top 12 countries from the WBSC Baseball World Rankings will unite for the first time ever at the WBSC Premier12, where each nation will have to compete for its ranking and honour, with a $US multi-million purse and highest payout of world ranking points at stake.

The full tournament schedule, bracket and complete list of venues for the WBSC Premier12, slated for 8-21 November in Japan and Taiwan, were revealed last week in Taipei City by the world governing body.

Venezuela’s U-12 National Team will also be playing for the world title and ranking points in this year’s WBSC U-12 Baseball World Cup in Tainan, Taiwan.