South Korea Joins International Baseball in St. Petersburg
Monday, December 6, 2010
CONTACT: Elizabeth Herendeen, Marketing and Communications Director, 727-893-7465 or Elizabeth.Herendeen@stpete.org
SOUTH KOREA'S MAJOR LEAGUE SEOUL NEXEN HEROES JOIN
ST. PETERSBURG'S INTERNATIONAL BASEBALL LINEUP
ST. PETERSBURG, FL (November 30, 2010) – The Seoul Nexen Heroes, a South Korean Major League Baseball team, will join St. Petersburg International Baseball, playing the Canadian and Dutch national teams along with MLB spring squads at Al Lang Field.
Korean Professional Baseball began in 1982 and is the highest level of baseball in South Korea, comparable to Major League Baseball in the United States. South Korea's baseball program is recognized as one of the strongest in the world. In 2009, South Korea placed second in the World Baseball Classic, just behind Japan and ahead of the third place United States. South Korea won the gold medal in the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics.
Mayor Bill Foster is thrilled with the addition of the Heroes to the lineup. "The Seoul Nexen Heroes really round out our spring schedule for 2011. I am extremely grateful to them, as well as the Dutch, Canadian and Australian teams for seeing what St. Petersburg has to offer and for making a commitment to our international baseball program.”
St. Petersburg International Baseball is an international baseball program that will include a spring league, and both a summer and fall series, all playing and practicing in St. Petersburg's spring training facilities.
The spring league is the first phase in this three part program. National teams from the Netherlands, Canada and now South Korea will play against each other and against Major League Baseball spring training squads, including the Tampa Bay Rays. Games will be played at Al Lang Field and are scheduled to begin February 21, 2011. The schedule is expected to consist of 15 games. The full season will be announced later this month.