• Mind games: the cold war race to produce a superhuman

    The US and Soviet Union both believed people could control time, read minds and ignore pain. And, reveals The Men on Magic Carpets, their psychic experiments played out in the sporting arenaCandlestick Park, San Francisco, 1964. The wind is whipping off the Bay on a typically cold night at the ballpark. Mike Murphy takes his seat in Section 17. A jazz band pipes up and the vendors shout their wares: Hamm’s or Falstaff beers, Oscar Mayer hot dogs with Gulden’s mustard. Murphy is close
  • Mind control, levitation and no pain: the race to find a superman in sport

    The US and Soviet Union both believed people could develop superpowers. And, reveals The Men on Magic Carpets, their psychic experiments played out in the sporting arenaCandlestick Park, San Francisco, 1964. The wind is whipping off the Bay on a typically cold night at the ballpark. Mike Murphy takes his seat in Section 17. A jazz band pipes up and the vendors shout their wares: Hamm’s or Falstaff beers, Oscar Mayer hot dogs with Gulden’s mustard. Murphy is close enough to talk to th
  • BaseballSoftballUK Announces London Series Ticket Raffle

    BaseballSoftballUK has purchased a small selection of tickets to see the New York Yankees face the Boston Red Sox at the Mitel & MLB London Series on 29 and 30 June at London Stadium, and some of these will be raffled off! Five pairs of tickets for each game will be available in the BSUK raffle, with raffle tickets costing £10 each. The winner of the raffle will receive two (2) tickets for either Saturday 29 June or Sunday 30 June. The tickets are Category 8 tickets with a face value
  • North West Series gets under way in 2019 with Comp and Rec days

    The North West Co-ed Slowpitch Series returned to Manchester for its third year on the weekend of 13-14 April with a one-day Rec Tournament on the Saturday and a Comp Tournament on Sunday.Rec Tournament Saturday kicked off a little on the chilly side, but some breaks in the cloud allowed the sun to shine through from time to time. Ten teams entered the Rec competition, including three teams who were so new that this was their tournament debut following some excellent recruitment by both the Manc
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  • BSUK reserves London Series tickets for baseball and softball volunteers

    BaseballSoftballUK has secured a number of tickets for the inaugural Mitel and MLB Present London Series 2019 between the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox at the London Stadium on 29 and 30 June and will use them to reward the contributions made by volunteers in the British baseball and softball communities. To buy these tickets, priced at £60 and £80 plus booking fee and shown as Seat Categories 7 and 8 on the seating diagram, volunteers from the groups set out below will need to
  • Slowpitch modular coaching courses set to run in London on 12 May

    Two three-hour modular courses open to all slowpitch coaches and players – one on slowpitch pitching and the other on drills for beginner coaches -- will be delivered in London on Sunday 12 May by GB Slowpitch Assistant Coach David Lee, pictured above. Both courses will take place at Park Academy West London, Park View Road, Uxbridge UB8 3GA. The module on slowpitch pitching will run from 10.00 am-1.00 pm, and the module on drills will run from 1.30-4.30 pm.  The cost to attend
  • Softball featured at Youth Sport Trust Girls Active Coaches Camp

    BaseballSoftballUK was invited for the second straight year to showcase the sport of softball at the annual Youth Sport Trust Girls Active Coaches Camp, which took place from 5-7 April at Loughborough University. The three-day residential camp provides 150 young female coaches aged 15-17 with the opportunity to learn and develop their skills through workshops, mentoring and practical sessions across a range of “new” sports, which this year also included boccia, badminton, football,
  • How $161m slugger Chris Davis ended up in the worst slump in MLB history

    Baltimore Orioles first baseman Chris Davis just set a new record for the longest hitless streak in MLB history. It’s possible we’ve never seen a hitter this lost at the plateThe beauty of professional baseball is that it has been around for 150 years and yet, still, sometimes fans will witness something without precedent. Supposedly unbreakable records fall. At times players find themselves in situations that defy logic. And sometimes these aren’t moments of triumph, but of he
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  • Yasiel Puig puts batting coach in headlock during Pirates-Reds mass brawl

    Four players ejected after confrontation in PittsburghFight sparked after Chris Archer throws behind Derek DietrichCincinnati’s Derek Dietrich admired a home run off Chris Archer in the second inning, and two innings later the Pittsburgh Pirates starter threw a 93mph fastball behind Dietrich’s waist, setting off a brawl on Sunday that led to the ejections of four players and Reds manager David Bell. Related: 'Maximum tension, minimum release': why baseball produces so many brawls Thi
  • Why baseball spent more than $1bn on three players in a month

    Three of the richest contracts in sports history would appear to bust the baseball-is-dying narrative, but underlying trends have exposed a rot within the mechanics of the sport’s economicsThe three generational talents on Major League Baseball’s free-agent market this winter were always going to cash in big. But the splashy numbers as they came across the wire were enough to leave even veteran observers slack-jawed.It kicked off in February when Manny Machado agreed to a 10-year, $3
  • London Indoor League wraps up successful season

    BaseballSoftballUK’s London Indoor Softball League wrapped up a successful season on Saturday 30 March at the Osterley Sports and Athletic Centre in Isleworth, West London, with titles going to Douche Canoe (pictured below) in the Comp Division and Knights in the Rec Division.Douche Canoe took the Comp title for the first time, taking over the honours from incumbents Blue Steel, in a three-way duel which included MI6 Inside Agents (shown below).By contrast, Knights (below) had a commandin
  • 'Traitor' Bryce Harper slams home run – and flips bat – on return to Nationals

    Slugger left Washington for rivals Phillies in off-seasonHits long home-run in 8-2 victory for new teamPhiladelphia off to their best start in over a centuryShowered by raindrops and jeers for much of the game, Bryce Harper put a bat-flipping, celebratory finish on his memorable return to Washington. Harper crushed a long home run in his final at-bat, and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Nationals 8-2 Tuesday night for the franchise’s best start in over a century. Maikel Franco also home
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  • BSUK Stakeholder Survey: have your say on the future priorities of your sport

    BaseballSoftballUK, the development agency for baseball and softball in the United Kingdom, has commissioned an independent agency to conduct a strategic review of the organisation’s work and future priorities, and all participants are encouraged to take part. The survey on this link -- https://bsuk.co/2WuVMSQ -- will be an important part of the strategic review and should take 7-8 minutes to complete.  All responses will be treated confidentially and will be fed directly into the st
  • MLB 2019 predictions: Harper to lead Phillies to World Series glory

    Will Mike Trout’s mega contract with the Angels drive him to greater heights? Who will win the Cy Young? Our writers have their say on the new seasonThe influx of young talent, but specifically Vladimir Guerrero Jr. The son of The Impaler, one of the greatest right-handed bats of all-time, is the top prospect in all of baseball. Since he struggled in spring training, it’ll be easy for the Jays to stash the 20-year-old in the minors, but the infielder should be up north by midseason a
  • Cartmel Valley Juniors win indoor baseball game in Manchester

    On Saturday 23 March, Cartmel Valley Juniors travelled to Manchester to play their first baseball game of 2019 – an indoor game at Fives Trafford against the Urmston Ripper Nippers. The Cartmel team, made up of 13 boys mostly in Year 8, showed their experience during the game, with powerful hits and slick fielding.  Clearly, the Cartmel Valley Juniors programme, led by Coach Dave Rawcliffe, is thriving, and the work of a group of dedicated coaches in Cumbria is clearly paying dividen
  • How baseball owners came to value profits over World Series titles

    MLB rules state that players must give their best to achieve victory. If only the same could be said for those who run the gameGio Gonzalez isn’t a star, but he’s been a reliable starting pitcher for nearly a decade. The kind MLB teams sign during free agency, because it’s worth diving in early for dependability. At least, it was that way once: Gonzalez recently signed a minor-league deal with the New York Yankees, because it was the only contract offer the 33-year-old received
  • Loughborough 1 wins Spring National University Baseball Championship

    The 2019 Spring National University Baseball Championship was played at Farnham Park on the weekend of 23-24 March, with 14 teams eager to take home the trophy and the title of the country's best university baseball team. That honour eventually fell to Loughborough University’s first team, who beat Oxford University in a thrilling final.  This gave Loughborough a clean sweep of spring university events, as their softball team had won the 2019 Spring National University Softball Champ
  • Manchester hosts successful Single-Sex Indoor Tournament

    On Sunday 24 March, BaseballSoftballUK hosted the final indoor event of the Winter 2019 season in Manchester – a Single-Sex Indoor Tournament -- on 4G Astroturf five-a-side football pitches at Fives Trafford. The tournament was played by five men’s teams and three women’s teams, with play beginning at 1:30 pm to allow for travel.   The games consisted of 10-minute innings, with women’s teams playing two round-robins and the men’s teams playing each other
  • Ichiro Suzuki retires to ovation after sparkling 27-year baseball career

    Japanese star plays final MLB game in packed Tokyo Dome45-year-old was a 10-time All-Star and fierce competitorIchiro Suzuki was showered with cheers and chants on Thursday night while taking his final bow in a magnificent career that lasted nearly three decades when the Seattle Mariners beat the Oakland Athletics 5-4 in Tokyo.The 45-year-old Ichiro went 0 for 4 in the second game of the Major League Baseball season, which was being played in his home country of Japan. He got a chance at a story
  • Mike Trout and LA Angels close to $430m deal, largest in sports history

    World’s best baseball player close to 12-year contract extensionSeven-time All-Star would earn average of $36m a yearMike Trout and the Los Angeles Angels are close to agreeing a 12-year deal that would secure the outfielder the largest contract in the history of sports, according to multiple reports. The 27-year-old is due to become a free-agent in 2020 and several Major League Baseball clubs had already started showing an interest in the greatest player of his generation. However, the ne
  • National University Softball Championship beats the weather

    The Loughborough University first team battled hard in a fantastic final against the University of Reading on Sunday 17 March at Farnham Park to take the title at BaseballSoftballUK’s National University Spring Softball Championship – but the weekend-long event came very close to not happening at all. Rain and high winds during the week leading up to the Championship meant that serious consideration had to be given to calling it off, largely because of the condition of the fields.&nb
  • Phillies slugger broke TV with bat after teammates played Fortnite during game

    Carlos Santana angered by video game during team’s slumpVeteran was traded away to Seattle Mariners in offseasonIn the midst of the Philadelphia Phillies’ late-season collapse in the final two months of the 2018 campaign, Carlos Santana apparently provided the biggest hit in the team’s clubhouse.As the Phillies’ young team lost 20 of their 28 games in September, after having had the best record in baseball in late July, the team’s former first baseman – who wa
  • Sam Haslam appointed as BSUK Events and Facilities Manager

    BaseballSoftballUK has appointed Sam Haslam to a new post of Events and Facilities Manager. Sam took up the position on 13 March, joining the organisation’s growing commercial team whose remit includes business development, marketing, events and facilities to help reduce reliance on Sport England funding. His role will include developing and delivering an annual events strategy for the organisation, centered around high-quality indoor and outdoor competition events, and day-to-day manageme
  • Is giving 26-year-old Bryce Harper a 13-year, $330m contract a terrible idea?

    The Philadelphia Phillies will be paying the slugger $22m when he’s 39. But it’s unlikely he will be the same player he is now in a decade’s timeFor some, 13 is an unlucky number. For Bryce Harper, originally from Las Vegas, 13 is anything but unlucky. That’s because the Philadelphia Phillies will be paying the slugger – who has been an All-Star in six of his seven seasons in Major League Baseball – $330m over the next 13 years, the richest contract in the his
  • San Francisco Giants CEO takes leave of absence after altercation with wife

    Video last week showed Larry Baer pulling wife to groundMLB is investigating incident in San FransiscoThe San Francisco Giants CEO and president Larry Baer is taking a leave of absence after video emerged last week of him knocking his wife Pam to the ground during a public altercation.Major League Baseball has launched an investigation into the incident, which took place in San Francisco, and the Giants said Baer will step away from the club for the time being. The board of directors said they h
  • San Francisco Giants CEO Larry Baer shown pulling wife to ground in video

    CEO shown in altercation with wife in video published by TMZBaer, 61, confirms ‘unfortunate public argument’ to ChronicleLarry Baer, the president and chief executive officer of the San Francisco Giants, was involved in an altercation with his wife in which he knocked her from her chair in a public plaza on Friday afternoon.A video of the incident published by TMZ on Friday shows Baer attempting to take a cell phone from his wife, Pamela, pulling her to the ground as she shouts: &ldq
  • Bryce Harper to sign record $330m contract with Philadelphia Phillies

    Harper’s 13-year, $330m deal is richest in baseball historySix-time All-Star was named National League MVP in 2015Bryce Harper and the Philadelphia Phillies have agreed to a 13-year contract worth $330m, making it the richest deal in baseball history.Harper, a 26-year-old All-Star outfielder who’s spent the entirety of his seven-year major-league career with the Washington Nationals, topped the 13-year, $325m agreement outfielder Giancarlo Stanton reached before the 2015 season with
  • BSUK to launch Slowpitch Softball Academy this spring

    BaseballSoftballUK will run the first-ever Academy Softball sessions for co-ed slowpitch players on two weekend days this spring at the Osterley Sports and Athletic Centre in Isleworth, West London. Training will be delivered by expert BSUK coaches, led by Robbie Robison and based around a carefully-designed programme of skills development.  The sessions will be aimed at competitive B-grade slowpitch players who want to get game-ready and maximise their preparation for the 2019 outdoor sea
  • Baseball and softball excluded from 2024 Olympic Games

    The announcement today of the four new sports that are proposed for inclusion in the Paris 2024 Olympic Games signalled that baseball and softball will not be involved when the Paris Games roll around. The organisers of Paris 2024 will propose to the International Olympic Committee that surfing, climbing, skateboarding and breakdancing be included on the programme.  The first three are set to debut at Tokyo 2020, while breakdancing was included in the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires in
  • Why is Cleveland Indians' Trevor Bauer MLB's most hated man?

    A climate skeptic and Twitter troll, the pitcher claims he’s only good at two things: ‘throwing baseballs and pissing people off’He may not be the most reviled man in US sports just yet, but Cleveland Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer seems hell-bent on earning the title. The 28-year-old has been irritating opponents, fans and even his own teammates for years, which makes it all the more amusing that the most recent headlines he’s made have involved him complaining about his o
  • Manny Machado agrees $300m deal with Padres, according to reports

    Twenty-six year-old set to join team building for futureDeal would be second-most valuable in baseball historyManny Machado, one of baseball’s biggest free agents, has signed a 10-year, $300m deal with the San Diego Padres, according to ESPN. The Padres executive chairman, Ron Fowler, said “we are continuing discussions” but it is believed the financial part of the deal has been confirmed with Machado still needing to pass a physical. This likely is semantics. Machado has not p
  • The Cubs are no longer lovable losers - but has the team lost its soul?

    The Ricketts family helped the Cubs end their 108-year wait for a World Series. But some fans think the club has lost what made it uniqueIn August 2009, after two-and-a-half years of trying, the Tribune Company finally sold the Chicago Cubs to the Ricketts family. The Ricketts made their money in the investment world, with patriarch Joe founding Omaha-based broker TD Ameritrade in 1971. Joe’s son, Tom, would become the public face of the Cubs, the most famous losers in US sports.The fact t
  • Order your team clothing now and set up your own team web store!

    With the new season just around the corner, now is the perfect time to start planning your new team jerseys. BSUK's apparel supplier, Aswani Sports, can produce a wide range of baseball/softball jerseys fully customised to your team’s requirements.  As the jerseys are fully sublimated your jersey design is only limited by your imagination. Click here to go to Aswani's website for full details and to start the design process. Aswani can also set you up with a free online web store so
  • UK Sport sets out blueprint for future funding

    UK Sport has set out its future funding strategy for Olympic and Paralympic sport, and in a dramatic break with its previous “No Compromise” policy, some funding will now be extended to sports that have future rather than immediate podium potential. The new strategy, which will come into force in April 2021 for the Paris 2024 and Los Angeles 2028 Olympic and Paralympic cycles, has been created following an extensive year’s work by UK Sport that included an independent Public Co
  • UK Sport awards £30,500 Aspiration Fund grant to GB Baseball

    UK Sport, the government agency that funds Britain’s Olympic and Paralympic teams and athletes, has announced an award of £30,500 to GB Baseball to help the team with its Olympic qualification journey, starting with the European Baseball Championship this September. Teams that finish in the top five places at the European Championship will move on to the Europe/Africa Olympic Qualifying Tournament later that month.  The winner of that tournament will have a direct passage to th
  • Kyler Murray walks away from $4m as he chooses NFL over MLB

    Heisman Trophy winner commits to career as quarterbackPlayer had been drafted by Oakland A’s last JuneHeisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray says he will pursue a career in the NFL over playing baseball for the Oakland Athletics. Murray was the ninth overall pick in last June’s baseball amateur draft, and the outfielder agreed to a minor league contract with Oakland for a $4.66m signing bonus. However, Murray had a brilliant college football season in 2018, passing for 4,361 yards and 42
  • Frank Robinson, hall of famer and MLB's first black manager, dies aged 83

    Robinson broke barriers when he took charge of ClevelandHis 586 home runs stand 10th on baseball’s all-time listHall of famer Frank Robinson, the first black manager in Major League Baseball and the only player to win the MVP award in both leagues, has died. Robinson had recently been in hospice care at his home in Bel Air. MLB confirmed his death on Thursday afternoon, Robinson was 83.An MVP with Cincinnati and Baltimore, Robinson cemented his legacy when he became Cleveland’s manag
  • Bryce Harper and Manny Machado: why two of MLB's best players don't have teams

    The league pulls in $10bn a year and yet no one wants to pay free-agents this offseason. Some believe owners are colluding to keep wages downIt’s only a week until pitchers and catchers start reporting for Spring Training and yet two of baseball’s biggest stars remain without teams. Bryce Harper, who has played his entire career with the Washington Nationals, and Manny Machado, who last played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, are both 26-year-old elite hitters at the peak of their career
  • LA coroner rules woman was killed by foul ball at Dodger Stadium

    ESPN obtains coroner’s report on incident last AugustBall traveled over protective netting and struck 79-year-oldA woman died as a result of being struck in the head by a foul ball at Dodger Stadium last August, according to a coroner’s report obtained by ESPN.Linda Goldbloom was celebrating her 79th birthday and 59th wedding anniversary at a game in August last year when a 93mph pitch hit by a San Diego Padres player traveled over an area protected by netting and struck Goldbloom in
  • Inspiration for coaches at the 2019 Coach Summit

    A busy and inspiring day of keynote speeches, classroom workshops, Q&A sessions and general chat about coaching marked BaseballSoftballUK’s fourth annual Coach Summit, held on Saturday 26 January at the Kents Hill Park Training and Conference Centre in Milton Keynes. Around 70 people from the British baseball and softball community attended the Summit, and over 50 of them stayed for the annual BSUK Coach Awards ceremony that followed the Summit sessions. The next day, 27 January, the
  • Coach award winners named at BSUK’s 2019 Coach Summit

    Six prestigious awards for coaching and one award for volunteer services were presented at a ceremony following the 2019 BaseballSoftballUK Coach Summit on Saturday 26 January in Milton Keynes. “Without coaches,” Chris Rawlings told more than 50 people in attendance as he Introduced the award presentations, “no one plays.  That’s why we have established the BSUK Coach Awards, to recognise coaches and what they bring to the community.” There had been, Chris not
  • Richard Chataway appointed to BSUK Board

    Richard Chataway, a leading figure in the use of behavioural science in communications in the UK, has been appointed as an Independent Director on the BaseballSoftballUK Board. With over 15 years of experience in applying behavioural science to communications -- a long time in a new field – Richard will be able to support BaseballSoftballUK staff in developing the range and effectiveness of their internal and external communications. BaseballSoftballUK CEO John Boyd said, “We welcome
  • Grounds crew needed for Farnham Park Baseball & Softball Complex

    BaseballSoftballUK is looking for people to work as part of the grounds crew at its National Baseball and Softball Complex at Farnham Park, near Slough. BaseballSoftballUK is the development agency for the both sports in this country, and owns and operates the flagship facility at Farnham Park.  The facility hosts baseball and softball league play, national and international tournaments and development sessions from mid-March through mid-October. The work will primarily involve repair, pre
  • WBSC announces Olympic Qualifier dates and hosts

    The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) has awarded hosting rights and announced the dates for six qualifying events for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Canada, China and the Netherlands will each be host to an Olympic Softball Qualifier, Chinese Taipei, Italy and the United States will each be home to an Olympic Baseball Qualifier.WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari said, "These next two years -- 2019 and 2020 -- will be the most important in the history of international baseball and softba
  • University Conference will again be combined with the Coach Summit

    BaseballSoftballUK's fifth annual University Baseball & Softball Conference will again run alongside the BSUK Coach Summit on 26 January 2019 in Milton Keynes. The University Baseball & Softball Conference will take place from 11.00am-5.00pm on the day.  The conference will be free for students to attend and they will be able to complete the Drills for Beginners practical training course and attend several university-specific workshop discussions.Combination BSUK Development M
  • Third keynote speaker added to Coach Summit programme

    A third keynote speaker, provided through Major League Baseball, has been added to the programme for BaseballSoftballUK’s 2019 Coach Summit, to be held on Saturday 26 January in Milton Keynes. Bill Holmberg, MLB’s International Pitching Coordinator for Europe and Africa and a former pitching coach for national team programmes in Italy and Taiwan, will present a keynote session on the MLB Throwing Programme as it relates to pitching mechanics and injury prevention. Bill will join the
  • Why Kyler Murray is set to forfeit a $4.6m MLB bonus and join the NFL

    The Oklahoma quarterback is a dual-sport star. Why would he choose the brutality of football over a more comfortable life in baseball?So this is what a college athlete with real leverage looks like. Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray has done a masterful job pitting two sporting giants, Major League Baseball and the National Football League, against each other.Let’s rewind for a moment to explain what’s happened. Murray was a brilliant two-sport athlete in high school, which is little sur
  • World Series MVP John Wetteland charged with child sexual abuse

    52-year-old was arrested on Monday in TexasWetteland helped Yankees to victory in 1996 World SeriesFormer major league pitcher John Wetteland has been charged in Texas with continuous sex abuse of a child under age 14. Denton County jail records show the 52-year-old Wetteland was arrested on Monday and freed on $25,000 bond.Authorities have not released details of the investigation into the Texas Rangers Hall of Famer.
    Wetteland was MVP of the 1996 World Series, in which he led the New York Yank
  • Tiger roars back and Floyd-Manny II: our bold sports predictions for 2019

    On the heels of a sports year that was chock full of surprises, Guardian US contributors make their bold predictions for the months to comeHere are our bold predictions for 2019 in sports. Please note the bold (or should that be bold?) in bold predictions: these are to be taken with a pinch of salt. Continue reading...
  • MLB London Series: The one where Rachael meets Jackie Bradley Jr.

    Interest in the London Series between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox next June continues to grow, even after virtually all tickets for the games have been sold. In November, the flames were fanned by the presence in London of former New York Yankees megastar Alex Rodriguez, universally known as A-Rod, who had an interesting recorded conversation with British Softball Federation President Jenny Fromer. This month, the other side showed their hand when current Boston Red Sox cen

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