Local pitchers in World Classic

2016-02-02 06:00
Carl Michaels will once again don the South African uniform when the national baseball team play in the World Baseball Classic qualifiers in Sydney next week. Michaels is no stranger to international baseball. PHOTOS: Rashied Isaacs

Carl Michaels will once again don the South African uniform when the national baseball team play in the World Baseball Classic qualifiers in Sydney next week. Michaels is no stranger to international baseball. PHOTOS: Rashied Isaacs

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Two pitchers of Athlone A’s, Carl Michaels and Lloyd Stevens, are packing their bags to join the rest of the South African baseball team at the World Baseball Classic qualifiers in Sydney from 11 to 14 February.

Lloyd Stevens (27) will be making his debut tour with the South African team after previously attending a national training camp in 2011. Stevens’ selection is good reward for his efforts over the last few seasons.

Stevens also captained the South African men’s softball team in 2010.

Carl Michaels (34) is no stranger to international baseball, having represented South Africa in numerous international tournaments in the past. His first taste of senior international baseball was at the All Africa Games in Johannesburg in 1999. He was then selected for the summer Olympic Games in Sydney in 2000.

In 2001, Michaels was signed by American Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise the Milwaukee Brewers. He played in the Milwaukee organisation for three years.

Michaels was the starting pitcher when South Africa played its opening game against Canada at the 2006 inaugural World Baseball Classic in Arizona.

The highlight of his international career was pitching for South Africa against the United States during that tournament. There, he pitted his talents against current MLB Hall of Fame inductee Ken Griffey Jr as well as future Hall of Fame players like Derek Jeter, Chipper Jones and Roger Clemens, who were all in the US line-up.

Michaels was also involved in a 1-2 loss to Korea in 2005 where he pitched 13 innings – the most pitched by a South African pitcher in a game.


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