For the third year, Major League Baseball International (MLBI), in cooperation with the Confederation of Brazilian Baseball & Softball (CBBS), will conduct a MLBI Elite Camp, led by Hall of Famer Barry Larkin, in São Paulo, Brazil. The best junior baseball players ages 14 to 18 from Brazil, along with young talent from Argentina and Peru, will participate. In addition, members of the Brazilian National Team, who qualified for the World Baseball Classic in November, will be training alongside Elite Camp players and providing instruction in preparation for the March 2013 tournament. There are nine members of Team Brazil who either participated in or worked out and provided instruction for previous Elite Camps held in Brazil. Additionally, every coach on Team Brazil’s World Baseball Classic coaching staff participated during previous camps.
The camp will be held at the training grounds for the CBBS in Ibíuna beginning today through February 6 with participants taking on a team of Brazilian University All-Stars at Mie Nishi Stadium in São Paulo on February 2. Media and local and foreign dignitaries have been invited to attend and watch the game at Mie Nishi Stadium.
Coaches from Little League Brazil will attend to observe the training and learn from the MLB instructional staff. The leading Brazilian institution for physical education and the arts, SESC (Serviço Social do Comércio), will be introducing instructors to the game in advance of a new after-school development program being implemented throughout the greater São Paulo area later this year. In addition, an umpire clinic will be conducted for local umpires by MLB and the Brazilian Baseball Federation.
Larkin will lead an instructional staff that includes former All-Star Dale Murphy, a coach for Team USA in the 2013 World Baseball Classic, former Major Leaguer Craig Lefferts who served as the pitching coach for Team South Africa during the World Baseball Classic Qualifiers, Dusty Wathan, Stephen Larkin and Mike Larson.
The Major League Baseball Scouting Bureau, along with scouts from MLB Clubs, will be in attendance throughout the duration of the camp to evaluate the talent showcased through these clinics.
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. Since the first Brazil Elite Camp in 2011, five participating players have been signed by MLB Clubs. Currently there are 15 Brazilian players signed with MLB organizations.
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 220 countries and territories, Major League Baseball game telecasts are re-transmitted in 20 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.