The Israel Association of Baseball has appointed Nate Fish as the manager for the senior national team ahead of next month’s CEB European Championships in Italy. Joining Fish on the Team Israel coaching staff will be Alex Jacobs, Richard Kania and Ophir Katz.
"We are very excited to have Nate Fish leading our coaching staff," Israel Baseball president Jordy Alter said. "Nate has a long relationship with the IAB and is a perfect fit for this position. He is a great guy and has a great baseball resume, including the work he did for the Los Angeles Dodgers in the Dominican Republic. We are also thrilled to have Alex Jacobs back on the staff to support Nate and are certain his expertise will help our team considerably."
Fish, 41, was the third base coach for Team Israel in recent years, including at the 2019 European Championships and the 2020 Olympic Games. Serving as Team Israel’s manager is just the latest role Fish has filled for Israel Baseball. He has also played for and captained the senior men's national team, spent three years as the IAB national director and was the first base coach for Israel at the 2017 World Baseball Classic. All of that experience has prepared Fish for his next step.
"There have been a lot of great coaches and great people on this team," Fish said. "From Pat Doyle back in the day to Brad Ausmus and Gabe Kapler in 2012 to Jerry Weinstein, Jerry Narron and Tom Gamboa in 2017, [Eric] Holtzy in the Olympics and Andrew Lorraine in all of that time. I have learned so much from them along with people from the YD Red Sox and the Dodgers organizations. I am honored to be included on that list."
Fish has extensive baseball experience outside of the Israel framework, too. He was the Savanah Bananas manager this spring and has also coached in the Los Angeles Dodgers system, at the Cape Cod League and the MLB European Elite Camp.
Jacobs, who was the bench coach for Team Israel since 2019, will also take on the role of pitching coach. A special assignment scout for the Arizona Diamondbacks, Jacobs has interned or worked for five different Major League organizations. He was a scout for the Houston Astros when they won the World Series in 2017 and has managerial experience from the Panamanian professional league. Before moving into an on-field role with Team Israel, he was the director of player personal for Israel's WBC team from 2015-2017.
Katz is the head coach of the Israel Baseball Academy and led Israel's entry at this summer's European Under-18 Championships, where they finished seventh. A long-time player for Team Israel at all age levels, he also runs the successful Tel Aviv Reds baseball and softball club.
Kania is a former head coach of both his native Czech Republic and Team Israel. He has had a relationship with Israel Baseball since 2008 and also worked as a European scout for the Chicago Cubs.
The 2021 European Championships will take place in Turin, Italy, from September 12 through 19. Israel will begin play in Group C along with Russia, France and Great Britain.