Major League Baseball International (MLBI), in cooperation with the Confederation of Brazilian Baseball & Softball (CBBS), will conduct an MLBI Elite Camp, led by Baseball Hall of Fame Electee Barry Larkin, in Brazil this February. The best junior baseball players, ages 14 to 17, from Brazil, along with young talent from Argentina and Peru will participate. The camp will be held at the training grounds for the CBBS in Ibíuna from February 6 to 10 and at Mie Nishi Stadium in São Paulo from February 13 to 15. This camp will provide a showcase for many members of the Brazilian National Team, which will compete this fall in the World Baseball Classic Qualifying Tournament.
Larkin will lead an instructional staff of former Major League players including Wally Joyner, Bruce Hurst and John Mizerock, all with previous experience as MLBI elite development instructors, who will provide training to both players and coaches from South American Baseball Federations. National and Junior National Team coaches from countries throughout the region will be on hand to serve alongside the staff. The camp participants will look to build on the success of the inaugural MLBI Elite Camp in Brazil held in 2011, which has already seen one player, pitcher Rafael Moreno, sign with the Baltimore Orioles.
“The 2012 MLBI Elite Camp will provide intensive, high-level training to some of the most talented players from across South America,” said Paul Archey, Senior Vice President, International Business Operations, Major League Baseball. “Thanks to the instruction and experience provided by the strong coaching staff, these young athletes are in a position to take the next steps in their development as elite baseball players.”
The Major League Baseball Scouting Bureau, along with scouts from MLB Clubs, will be in attendance throughout the duration of the camp to view the talent showcased through these clinics.
During the final week in São Paulo, the camp will feature games between Elite Camp players and local university baseball teams. Media and local and foreign dignitaries have been invited to attend and view the skills clinics and games at Mie Nishi Stadium.
Since 1999, MLBI has conducted Elite Camps in Canada, Colombia, Puerto Rico, Europe and South Africa in addition to hosting top players each year at the three MLB International Academies, located in Australia, China and Italy. More than 300 former participants from these programs have signed with Major League Clubs. From the participating countries at the 2012 MLBI Elite Camp in Brazil, 17 players are currently signed to professional contracts with MLB organizations, 12 of whom were born in Brazil.