Olympic qualification and WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup in Florida highlight 2021 calendar

Following the successful completion of the inaugural National Team Championships in North Carolina in August, USA Baseball has shifted its focus to 2021 programming. Next year’s calendar is set to include 2021 Olympic Games qualifying opportunities and hosting the World Baseball Softball Confederation U-18 Baseball World Cup in Sarasota-Bradenton, Florida, as well as numerous national team identification events throughout the country.

The National Team Championships in North Carolina marked the final event of 2020 as the 15U and Women’s National Team Trials will not be held this year. Both the 15U and Women’s National Team programs were set to compete in the World Baseball Softball Confederation U-15 Baseball World Cup and Women’s Baseball World Cup, respectively; however, the events were postponed due to COVID-19. Additionally, no regional identification events for the 2021 USA Baseball National Team Identification Series Champions Cup will be held in 2020.

USA Baseball will announce the 2021 events calendar and national team programming schedule at a later date. Valley News/Courtesy photo

“We are looking forward to a full slate of USA Baseball programming in 2021, including opportunities to qualify for the Olympic Games, compete for world championships and earn a gold medal on our home turf at the WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup in Florida,” Paul Seiler, executive director and CEO of USA Baseball, said. “This year has given us a chance to learn and develop as an organization and we are excited for the opportunities presented to us to get back into action in 2021 and continue developing young athletes both on and off the field.”

A full schedule of USA Baseball’s 2021 events and national team programming will be announced at a later date. The upcoming year will include the ninth annual National High School Invitational, as well as the Futures Invitational, the National Team Championships in Arizona and North Carolina and the National Team Identification Series, among others.

Next year will also feature the 2021 Olympic Games, which are currently scheduled to take place from July 23-Aug. 8 in Tokyo, Japan. Team USA will compete for one of two remaining spots in the Olympic Games baseball tournament.

USA Baseball is committed to serving, protecting and supporting the game of baseball and its 15.6 million participants. Founded in 1978, USA Baseball fields six national teams annually and is a member of the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee and the World Baseball Softball Confederation. On the diamond, USA Baseball is a two-time Olympic gold medalist and the reigning World Baseball Classic champion and its national teams have won 62 gold medals in international competition.

Celebrated in coordination with the 20th anniversary of the gold medal-victory over Cuba in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, USA Baseball encourages its alumni, community and fans to celebrate its past accomplishments by sharing stories of impact and helping spread the word on what it means to be a part of USA Baseball. For more information on the organization, its national teams and development-driven initiatives, visit the official website at http://www.USABaseball.com or http://www.USABDevelops.com.

JP Raineri can be reached by email at sports@reedermedia.com.