All-Star coaching staff leads sixth annual MLBI European Baseball Academy08/04/2010 12:10 PM ET
Former Major League infielder and manager Art Howe joins an All-Star coaching roster that includes Barry Larkin, Wally Joyner, Bruce Hurst and Lee Smith for the sixth annual Major League Baseball International European Baseball Academy, it was announced today. The MLBI European Baseball Academy, which will be held from August 4-27 at the Italian National Olympic Training Center in Tirrenia, Italy, will feature 50 of the best young players ages 15-to-20 from 11 European countries (Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia and Spain), two African nations (South Africa and Uganda), and, for the first time ever, India. Participants, all National or Junior National Team players, were selected by the Major League Scouting Bureau after holding tryouts across Europe in April.
"We are privileged to have assembled such a distinguished coaching staff to work with elite ballplayers from the region in order to further develop their skills, gaining unprecedented exposure to talent evaluators representing all 30 MLB organizations," said Paul Archey, Senior Vice President, International Business Operations, Major League Baseball. "With more players coming out of Europe than ever before, the Academy provides a central location for the best and brightest stars of the future to take a key step toward joining the professional ranks."
This will be Art Howe's first year as an instructor at the Academy, where he will serve as Field Director. Howe is joined by a coaching staff with decades of Major League playing, coaching and managerial experience, including: Larkin - Infield Instructor; Hurst - Pitching Coordinator; Smith - Pitching Instructor; Joyner - Hitting and First Base Instructor; Brent Mayne - Catching Instructor; Felix Millan - Infield Instructor; and German Geigel - Outfield and Baserunning Instructor. The Academy staff also includes Jeff Krushell (Head of Strength and Conditioning) and Jeff Wood (Head Trainer).
Since 2005, 42 European Baseball Academy alumni have signed contracts with Major League organizations, most recently Czech Republic pitcher Marek Minarik, who was signed by the Philadelphia Phillies during the 2010 MLBI European Baseball Academy try-outs. (See the attached for a complete list of European Baseball Academy players signed by MLB organizations.)
About MLB International Baseball Academies
MLB International Baseball Academies are held in Queensland, Australia (est. 2001), Tirrenia, Italy (est. 2005) and Wuxi, China (est. 2007), and are designed to provide promising junior players with both the environment and instruction to improve their skills in preparation for the rigors of professional and international baseball through four key areas: baseball skills development, physical development, personal development and coaching development. To complement the program, select coaches from National Baseball Federations are invited to train alongside the MLB coaching staff during one-week placements at the Academies. At the Academy's conclusion, the baseball equipment used will be donated to participating federations in order to continue the development of baseball.
About MLB International
Major League Baseball International (MLBI) focuses on the worldwide growth of baseball and the promotion of Major League Baseball and MLB Club trademarks and copyrights through special events, broadcasting, market development, licensing and sponsorship initiatives. MLBI is committed to showcasing the world's best baseball talent through international events around the globe. Broadcast in 219 countries and territories, Major League Baseball game telecasts are re-transmitted in 17 different languages. MLBI executes and supports game development programs targeting players and coaches from grassroots to elite levels. With an extensive list of marketing partners worldwide, MLBI continues to grow its position as a leader in the international marketplace. MLBI is supported in its mission through presences in Beijing, New York, London, Sydney and Tokyo.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.