WBSC Women’s Baseball World Cup
league World Cup of their own
The GIST: Stock up on some Harvey Bars because Team USA’s gals — including current and former NCAA athletes — will take the WBSC Women’s Baseball World Cup field for the first time in five years (thanks, COVID-19) tomorrow. Batter up!
How it works: This ninth edition of the women’s baseball Cup boasts a new format, similar to last month’s softball World Cup. A dozen teams are contending for gold, but the U.S. only has to face five of ’em this month, because the group stage and the finals take place a full year apart — the next champ won’t be crowned until 2024.
- The world No. 4 USA squad and the five other members of Group A kick off the round-robin group stage tomorrow in Thunder Bay, Canada — and by Saturday night, the group’s top two teams will have sealed their spots in next year’s finals.
- Group B will follow suit next month in Miyoshi City, Japan, adding their best two squads to next summer’s six-team field, which will also include two wild card entries.
Who to know: Most of this U.S. roster plays or played NCAA ball — but not necessarily baseball. Several athletes, including current Cal State San Marcos infielder Jillian Albayati and former Georgia standout Alex Hugo, went the collegiate softball route, but others, like pitcher and Rose-Hulman hooper Jamie Baum, compete in the NCAA off the dirt. Versatile.
- Headlining the current NCAA baseball girlies are Brown’s DI trailblazer and friend of The GIST Olivia Pichardo — who’ll look to continue her history-making summer this week — and Hood College infielder Remi Schaber.
- And don’t sleep on the softball alums breaking down pro baseball barriers in their offseasons: Kelsie Whitmore (Cal State Fullerton) was the first woman to play in the Atlantic League, and Sarah Edwards (Hofstra) became the first female coach in MLB’s Philadelphia Phillies’ history in March.
What to watch: Our two-time World Cup gold medalists must face No. 10 South Korea, No. 11 Hong Kong, and No. 12 Mexico this week, but their biggest battles will be against No. 8 Australia at 3:30 p.m. ET tomorrow and No. 3 Canada at 7:30 p.m. ET on Thursday. Channel your inner Dottie Hinson, and catch all the action on GameTime — no splits required.