Year in Review - Top Stories of 2020

Year in Review - Top Stories of 2020
Here's a list of all the top stories in 2020, a year in which the WBSC and its members still managed many achievements, both on and off the field, despite the impact of Covid-19 around the world.



January 8 - Baseball5 added to Youth Olympic Games Dakar 2022 sports programme
January 15 - Men’s Softball World Rankings: Japan take No. 1 spot for the first time ever
January 15 - Record 69 nations featured in final 2019 WBSC Women’s Softball World Rankings
January 16 - Women’s Baseball World Rankings: No. 1 Japan, No. 2 Canada, No. 3 Chinese Taipei lead way
January 16 - 10 new countries break into latest Men’s Baseball World Rankings, Japan remains No. 1
January 23 - Continental quota confirmed for Baseball5 World Cup & Youth Baseball5 World Cup
January 27 - WBSC Baseball, Softball World Rankings hit milestones on road to 2020 Olympics
January 28 - World Baseball Classic to expand from 16 to 20 nations as Qualifiers announced


Japan Premier12

February 2 - Australia Pacific Cup: Fujita shines as Japan claims title
February 4 - U-18 Men's Softball World Cup: Palmerston North ready to welcome the world
February 6 - Japan's NPB registers record 2019 attendance as baseball leagues lead pro sports attendance
February 9 - WBSC Europe holds second Congress, confirms exciting future ahead
February 24 - WBSC publishes new Baseball5 Rulebook as game’s popularity soars internationally
February 25 - Dates, locations announced for World Baseball Classic 2021
February 27 - WBSC Medical Commission issues 12 tips to prevent spread of Coronavirus at sport venues
February 29 - Baseball5 European Championship: Lithuania, France qualify for Baseball5 World Cup


Japan U18 Mens softball world champion

March 1 - WBSC U-18 Men’s Softball World Cup Day 9: Undefeated Japan claim U-18 World Cup title
March 2 - Nicaragua, Cuba, Venezuela qualify for U-23 Baseball World Cup 2020
March 2 - France are the first Baseball5 European champions
March 3 - MLB, MLBPA, WBSC reach player agreement for Olympics, Qualifiers
March 5 - Palmerston North by the numbers: Stats of the U-18 Men’s Softball World Cup
March 10 - New logo unveiled for first WBSC Men’s Softball World Cup in 2021
March 12 - Olympic softball schedule announced for Tokyo 2020 Games
March 12 - President Fraccari carries Olympic Torch in Greece
March 12 - Americas Olympic Baseball qualifier postponed
March 13 - World Baseball Classic Qualifier postponed
March 18 - Record 86 nations in latest WBSC Baseball World Rankings
March 24 - Message from the WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari on the postponement of Tokyo 2020
March 25 - Final Olympic Baseball Qualifier postponed to a date TBD
March 25 - Watch for free: WBSC Baseball, Softball World Cup blockbuster games
March 30 - New dates for Tokyo 2020 Olympics: 23 July to 8 August 2021


Tokyo Dome Premier12

April 1 - WBSC postpones 2020 Women’s and U-15 Baseball World Cups, U-18 Women’s Softball World Cup
April 7 - President Fraccari honours #WorldHealthDay by thanking nurses around the world
April 14 - Baseball season in Taiwan opens amid COVID-19 as the first in the world
April 16 - Baseball5 World Cup: Africa embracing Baseball5 opportunity
April 20 - WBSC aims to develop baseball and softball into one of the biggest sports in the world
April 22 - WBSC Men’s Softball World Cup 2021 postponed
April 26 - Women’s professional softball season opens in Taiwan


Return to Play Guidelines

May 4 - WBSC postpones 2021 Women’s Softball World Cup to 2023 to keep spotlight on 2021 Olympics
May 5 - WBSC awards Argentina the hosting rights of first-ever U-23 Men's Softball World Cup
May 6 - WBSC's 'GameTime Classics' series buzzing on social media
May 9 - Taiwan's CPBL opens stadiums to fans, games sold out as another milestone is passed
May 19 - President Fraccari: Baseball-softball need to be at the heart of global COVID-19 recovery
May 20 - The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Tokyo 2020 softball hopeful Danielle Lawrie-Locke reflects on Beijing 2008 Olympic experience
May 25 - Former IBAF Vice President, Japan baseball leader Masatake Matsuda dies
May 28 - WBSC issues guidelines for a safe return of baseball/softball activity in new COVID-19 world
May 29 - WBSC runs Baseball5 webinars for development in Africa


Don Porter memory

June 4 - Historic: British Federation launches Women's Baseball league, names Amanda Hocking first National Team manager
June 8 - Don Porter, international softball leader, past WBSC co-President dies at 90
June 10 - WBSC Men’s Softball World Cup 2022 to open on 19 February in Auckland, New Zealand
June 11 - WBSC Executive Board postpones Baseball5 World Cups to June 2021
June 15 - World Softball Day celebration spreads across social media
June 20 - #WorldRefugeeDay: Baseball-softball look to make a difference in the global refugee crisis
June 25 - New rules coming to MLB for shortened 2020 season
June 26 - Big Read: Mark Sorenson on the future of the New Zealand Men’s Softball Team
June 30 - WBSC U-23 Baseball World Cup 2020 in Mexico postponed to 2021
June 30 - 2022 Asian Games: Ground broken for new baseball-softball complex in Shaoxing, China


Thomas Bach Riccardo Fraccari Home Plate inauguration

July 2 - WBSC re-streaming of Baseball, Softball World Cup games draws millions of views, provides entertainment amid COVID-19 pandemic
July 6 - Baseball, softball world governing body WBSC opens permanent headquarters in Switzerland to stay close to the Olympic Movement
July 9 - WBSC’s new green headquarters reflects organisation’s vision to be sustained on Olympic programme
July 15 - Debut of Baseball5 at Youth Olympic Games postponed as next YOG shifted from 2022 to 2026
July 16 - WBSC Headquarters: New chapter in history, exciting future for global baseball, softball
July 16 - WBSC U-18 Women’s Softball World Cup in Peru postponed to 2021
July 17 - New Olympic softball schedule announced for Tokyo 2020 Games
July 17 - Dates, general schedule confirmed for Olympic baseball for next year's Tokyo 2020 Games
July 21 - One year from today: Softball will open the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
July 22 - WBSC launches 'Olympic Rewind' series to celebrate Tokyo 2020 original baseball, softball schedules
July 23 - One year to go until baseball-softball’s ‘spectacular’ Olympic comeback: WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari op-ed
July 27 - Record 288 international players featured on MLB Opening Day rosters
July 28 - Baseball to make Olympic return at Tokyo 2020 one year from today


WBSC Academy

August 3 - WBSC Presidential Council Meeting reviews growth strategy for ‘new normal’ in int’l sports
August 3 - WBSC Athletes Commission: Players are part of WBSC's decision-making process
August 6 - Aussie legend, manager David Nilsson says Olympics, int'l play important for baseball
August 6 - Good things come in threes: Japanese softball legend Eri Yamada eyes third medal at Tokyo 2020 Olympics
August 10 - It's been 55 years since first-ever Women’s Softball World Championship in 1965
August 12 - WBSC shares UN Youth Day values: Baseball/softball only sport to stage U-12 World Cup
August 24 - WBSC holds first Baseball5 webinar in Arabic
August 27 - WBSC Academy unveiled: Executive Board applauds new e-learning platform, a key tool to grow baseball & softball around the world


Baseball5 ball

September 9 - Japan Women’s Softball League opens with pitchers Goto, Ueno in clash of generations
September 11 - Samurai Japan's Inaba still focused on Olympic Gold
September 11 - WBSC's GameTime video platform to show Cuban Baseball's Serie Nacional games with exclusive int'l rights agreement
September 17 - From WBSC U-12 World Cup 2011 to MLB: Rafael Marchan makes debut with Phillies, gets first big league hit
September 18 - WBSC hosts GAISF and ARISF Council meetings at its new headquarters
September 21 - Beng Choo Low Op-Ed: Baseball-softball must channel unifying power of sport to shape a more peaceful world
September 24 - WBSC publishes new Baseball5 rulebook for the 5-on-5 urban game
September 30 - 80 USA Baseball alumni on MLB postseason rosters


WBSC flag

October 5 - WBSC Members vote to hold IV Congress in March 2022
October 9 - WBSC's 'GameTime' channel to live-stream inaugural Taiwan Baseball5 Championships on 13-14 Oct, logo revealed
October 14 - WBSC establishes new Integrity Unit to safeguard future of baseball and softball
October 15 - WBSC female umpire Po Chun Liu runs Baseball Camp to celebrate UN's Int'l Day of the Girl Child
October 20 - Global exposure: MLB World Series to be broadcast in 220 countries/territories, 15 languages
October 29 - WBSC, GameTime to live-stream final of Japanese Women's Baseball Federation on 31 October
October 29 - New WBSC Integrity Unit releases updated Baseball5 official ball certification programme
October 30 - New WBSC Academy opens first online courses in push to further globalise baseball, softball


Yokohama Stadium

November 2 - Nearly 28k packed into Tokyo 2020 Olympic baseball, softball venue to boost COVID-19 safety response
November 5 - WBSC shares with Olympic Movement baseball case study on successfully running COVID-secure sports event
November 9 - She does it again: Yukiko Ueno leads Bic Camera Bee Queen to Japan Softball League back-to-back titles
November 13 - WBSC’s baseball-softball global headquarters featured as IOC sustainability case study
November 16 - Baseball’s Kim Ng becomes first female pro team General Manager in North American sports history
November 18 - WBSC expands digital, commercial footprint with launch of
November 18 - WBSC Academy: Coach Commission launches grassroots course on baseball/softball fundamentals
November 20 - World Children’s Day: WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari calls upon Baseball-Softball to do more to boost youth access to sport and promote Olympic values
November 23 - Taiwan’s first baseball/softball fields for people with disabilities open in New Taipei City
November 28 - Tokyo 2020: Japanese Olympic Softball Team head coach Utsugi reflects on chance, pitching staff
November 30 - New dates released for 2021 WBSC U-18 Women’s Softball World Cup in Peru


Riccardo Fraccari end of the year message

December 8 - First wheelchair softball field inaugurated in Japan
December 9 - First-ever Baseball5 World Cup set for 2022 as WBSC announces five-on-five international calendar
December 10 - WBSC welcomes Cape Verde Baseball Softball Federation, Italian Association of Baseball for the Blind as newest Members
December 10 - WBSC approves E-Sports as new discipline and virtual version of Baseball/Softball, setting stage for future official World Cup video games
December 16 - WBSC to live-stream Australian Baseball League 2020-2021 season
December 18 - End-of-the-year message from WBSC President to the global Baseball Softball community
December 24 - Beng Choo Low: 2020 accelerates adaptation and progress for international baseball/softball
December 29 - WBSC passes 750k followers on social media
December 31 - 2020 in Review: Baseball-softball global activity remains strong in challenging times

Read More - COVID-19: WBSC Updates in 2020

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