The Czech national team is not a team made up of professional baseball players. Each of them has a job, and they gather after work to train. But how can you hit a ball over 160km/h?
It is true that the Czech national team players have ‘two jobs’. So, it is compared to a baseball player, a member of society in Korea, and even the expression ‘hobby life’ has appeared. However, it would be rude to tell these players that baseball is their hobby.
Former head coach Mike Griffin is from Canada and has been drawing a blueprint for improving the international competitiveness of Czech baseball for nine years. No country will seriously support someone’s hobby for this long. As Griffin’s strategy worked, the Czech Republic became the second highest ranked team in Europe after the Netherlands.
Players who started playing baseball as a teenager and have consistently experienced international competitions are now the Czech national team. The extra league they play in is a league with its own system consisting of 8 teams. There are several players with minor league experience, and recently, players who have played in the American college league and challenged the major leagues have begun to emerge.
Ondray Satoria, who pitched against Japan on the 11th, is a player who has participated in nine WBSC (World Baseball Softball Confederation) international competitions, including the 2013 U-18 Baseball World Cup and the 2016 U-23 Baseball World Cup. Lucas Ercoli, whom Korea will face on the 12th, has experience in four international competitions, including the 2012 U-18 Youth Baseball Championship held in Seoul.
Catcher Martin Servenka played for the New York Mets minor league team through 2021. In Double-A, he was named an All-Star. Michael Kovala is a pitcher who is considered one of the best prospects in Europe ahead of entering Georgia Tech. The word ‘two jobs’ is only a part of their lives.
One of the characteristics of the Czech national team this time is the relationship between coach Pavel Hadim and the players. Head coach Hadim is a neurologist and baseball coach. He coached the Czech Republic at the 2012 Under-21 European Championship and the 2014 Under-21 Baseball World Cup. Afterwards, he worked as a coach for the Czech Baseball Association and took over as head coach of the adult national team in 2021. All of the current Czech national team members have had a relationship with head coach Hadim since their youth days. This is also the reason why the Czech Baseball Association appointed manager Hadim.먹튀검증
Director Hadim prides himself on saying, “We are more like a family than a family.” It is not a relationship that belongs to the category of family since birth, but it is a ‘real family’ that is closer than family. The players also participated in the WBC preliminary with great pride in this.
“Meeting a week ago and running without knowing each other’s names (Czech documentary ‘Small country, big dream’)” It was not a team that was ‘hurriedly made’ by collecting players from the United States or Latinos to advance to the finals like other European teams, but one team for 10 years. It is a pride to have shared the same dream while playing as a team. Right now, Korea is a must-have opponent, but their passion deserves respect.