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On September 3, the Miami Marlins held its annual Jewish Heritage Day. In co-operation with the Israeli consulate, the Marlins arranged a special day for all those who came to watch the game. It started with the distribution of shirts with a Magen David and the Miami Marlins symbol to all the fans. Then the Israeli national anthem, Hatikvah, was played in the presence of IDF flag bearers, who were on the field. The Israeli Consul General Lior Haiat threw out the first pitch of the game, played against the Philadelphia Phillies. Then pitcher for Team Israel WBC and the Senior National Team Shlomo Lipetz was invited to throw another "first" pitch, and Team Israel WBC bullpen catcher Tal Erel caught for him. 

There were thousands of Jewish spectators in the stadium, and Jewish music was played throughout the game. Another "guest" was the Mensch on a Bench, the Team Israel WBC mascot at the World Baseball Classic earlier this year. Fans could have their pictures taken with him, as well as with Shlomo and Tal.

"It was such fun to see all the kids who came to see us and the Mensch," says Tal. "This kind of Jewish event outside Israel is so exciting and I hope that they will continue with these types of events."

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Justin Peedin

Justin Peedin joined Israel Baseball a year ago as Director of Baseball Operations. Following a very busy year, we caught up with him to hear about his year and what he's looking forward to in the new year.

What were the highlights of the past year for you?
There were many highlights in my exciting first year. The main highlight for me was the incredible relationships I’ve made with everyone that makes the IAB machine run; players, coaches, and the many others that help with logistical needs.

What suprised you about Israel baseball?
What surprised me about Israel baseball was the amount of devoted people that we’re lucky to have in our organization. From kids to coaches and helpers, so many have devoted a big part of their life to providing the best baseball experience.

What were your main challenges?
I think we all face similar challenges when it comes to convenience. Whether its transportation, carpools, weather inconvenience, travel time, umpires, etc. When I saw that something became a serious issue, I did my best to communicate with everyone so that we could come together to find the best solution. In most cases, I feel we were successful.

What are you most looking forward to in the coming baseball year?
I’m most looking forward to seeing the kids having fun playing the sport we all love! I’m looking forward the bonds we all make and life skills the kids learn from baseball.

How do you think baseball in Israel is developing?
I’m extremely excited for this coming year to see how things are developing after my first year. We’ve added some incredible people to the IAB family and there are others that are taking on bigger roles to help improve our level of play while bringing in many new kids.
My hope is that we can start construction on our two new proposed facilities in Ra’anana and Bet Shemesh. When we have those, I cannot wait to see how things advance.

What are your goals for the coming year?
My goal is to do everything I can to provide the best experience for everyone involved. We have worked hard to put the pieces in place for a successful year and I’m excited to see how things emerge.

What is your message to all the players for the new year?
Have fun, work hard to get better, and be a good teammate!
I want to see EVERY ONE of you at our national team tryouts so that you can have the opportunity to represent the best country in the world - ISRAEL!!!

Registration is now open for the 2017/18 season. This year, we are offering our members an early bird special that will expire on September 7, 2017. So please register and pay on our website on the registration tab on our home page as soon as possible to take advantage of this offer. As of September 8, the full prices will apply.

 

 

Maccabiah clinic flyer

The 2017 Maccabiah Baseball Tournament got off to a great start on July 5 at the Baptist Village in Petah Tikvah. 

In Game 1, Team Canada took on Team USA. For the first four innings of the game, the teams were evenly matched, with Team USA scoring one run in the first and one in the second inning, and Canada getting on the board with a run in the second inning, followed by another in the fourth. But the USA's bats cam alive in the fifth and sixth innings and they scored four runs in each, ending the game 10-2.

In Game 2, Team Israel debuted at the tournament against Team Canada, starting strongly, and pulling ahead 3-2 after the second inning, with strong pitching from opener Avi Segal. At the top of the fourth, Israel extended its lead by one more run, but Canada hit back with a couple of well-placed bunts to move their team into a comfortable position in the bottom of the fouth, with four more runs. After a close game, Team Canada came away with the win - 6-4.

For box scores, click here

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