Baseball used to be a quintessential American sport. But now, the sport has achieved so much popularity making the diamond has now become a polyglot’s playground. Even in the nationally and internationally acclaimed baseball leagues, there are Asians and Antipodeans. Anywhere in the world, you get to see kids and adults play the sport.
Each of these countries where there is baseball has etched its own baseball history. The International Baseball Federation found out that there are over 35 million registered baseball players in 122 countries worldwide.
Baseball in the US
Baseball has acquired the epithet “America’s Pastime” for being the most favorite sports played in the country. It also has a lot of American spectators supporting it.This sport reflects the Americans’ spirit of courage, confidence, combativeness; disciplined, democracy, determination, energy, eagerness, enthusiasm, fearlessness, high-spiritedness, persistence, sagaciousness, success, vigor and virility.
There are two major leagues in the US, which also have amassed millions of followers around the world. There are a total of 30 teams now playing in the American League (AL) and National League (NL), with 15 teams in each league.
The Asian Invasion
What used to be a quintessential American sport has become one of the world’s most loved sports. And the Asians have shown so much passion for the sport. The establishment of the Baseball Federation of Asia catapulted baseball as one of Asia’s well – loved sports. During the 2nd Asian Games held in Manila, Philippines, organizers of the quadrennial sporting event agreed to establish the Baseball Federation of Asia (BFA). May 7 of that year marks the birth of BFA. From then on, the unprecedented rise of baseball in Asia is now part of the continent’s glorious milestones in the sport. According to the WSBC Baseball World Rankings for 2017, three Asian countries land in the top 5 with Japan taking the top spot. South Korea ranks third while Chinese Taipei ranks fourth.
South and Central American Baseball
South and Central America’s love for the sport is as evident and intense as that of the Americans. The region boasts of several top-notch teams that regularly produces players that move on to other, bigger leagues as American MLB. As an affirmation to the sport’s popularity in these regions,there are those who play baseball in the streets and in the school yards. There are also professional leagues in these regions professional leagues aside from thousands of amateur teams on corporate and school levels across Latin America.
Baseball in Europe
The Confederation of European Baseball (CEB) is the official baseball governing body within Europe. The confederation is responsible for operating the European Baseball Championship, a championship that has been running since 1954 in Europe.CEB was founded in 1953, with five member countries namely: Belgium, France, West Germany, Italy and Spain. today, there are 38 member teams.
There are myriads of reasons why baseball has achieved worldwide popularity. More than the benefits that baseball can offer, it is the passion for the sport that has kept the popularity growing. Passion for the baseballs and the baseball bats played in the diamond is the ultimate reason.