Are you passionate about baseball? Do you want to experience Europe in a unique way? If so, you have come to the right place. Old World Baseball, LLC (OWB) is dedicated to providing custom-tailored, high-quality, baseball-playing/cultural opportunities in Europe for groups and individuals (of all ages).
Each of the founders of OWB, Tom Gillespie and Stephan Rapaglia, has had tremendous coaching and playing experience in the European baseball world. Between them, Tom and Stephan have coached and/or played in the shadows of Windsor Castle and Edinburgh Castle, in Barcelona's Olympic Stadium, and in other historic European locations such as London, Paris, Amsterdam, Antwerp, Cologne, Hamburg, Stockholm, Prague, Madrid, Munich, Regensburg, Rouen and Zagreb. OWB was founded by Tom and Stephan so that adventurous and enthusiastic North American ballplayers can share these types of experiences.
*Old World Baseball is not affiliated in any way with Major League Baseball® or the World Baseball Classic®.
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Tom Gillespie of Old World Baseball has another venture, Play Global - a non-profit using baseball to bring people together in areas of conflict. Most recently, Tom and Play Global participated in a special event in Israel. Check out the article below from Israel and see recent news from there, Uganda, Kenya, and more on Play Global's Facebook page. http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Sports/Israeli-baseball-bringing-Jewish-and-Arab-youth-together-393807
OWB plans to announce its 2015 high school trip roster by April 1. The 2015 travel dates are July 1 – July 13, 2015, and trip destinations will include the Czech Republic, Germany and Belgium. If you would like more information about the 2015 trip or next year's trip, please contact Stephan Rapaglia via email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Old World Baseball and Collegiate Baseball League Europe (CBLE) have reached a collaboration agreement to advance their respective programs as well as the development of European baseball. CBLE, initiated in 2012, provides a high level summer competitive and showcase opportunity for US players aged 18-23 and continues to expand. For more information about CBLE, visit www.cble.org.
Old World Baseball recently announced a new college summer program to debut in July/August 2015. In partnership with Sacred Heart University (SHU), OWB will be running a 17 day European tour (July 28 - August 13) with 3 college credits, high-level games (against national and/or top-level club teams) and European club tryout opportunities. Registration materials and additional information are available at:
OWB recently completed a very successful 2014 trip to England, Sweden and the Czech Republic. The trip, which ran from July 5 thru July 18, involved 2 OWB teams, 32 OWB players, 4 countries, 6 cities, 5 flights, 19 games, 9 international opponents, 2 formal tours, 2 castle visits and 1 karaoke night!
Two recent articles in Connecticut newspapers focused on Brendan Donohue's European experiences with OWB in 2014. http://www.dariennewsonline.com/sports/article/Darien-baseball-players-square-off-in-England-5671734.php and http://blog.ctnews.com/dncsports/2014/08/05/catching-up-with-darien-baseball-captain-brendan-donohue/.
Play Global!, a non-profit started by OWB's Tom Gillespie, is finalizing its first major project. With financial assistance from MLB's Derek Lee, Play Global! has already begun installing batting cages in Uganda, and Play Global! recently completed extensive baseball clinics in that country as well. http://allafrica.com/stories/201408183175.html. Learn more and help at www.play-global.org.
OWB's 2013 trip to Europe is now complete. OWB's team of 22 ballplayers from around the U.S. finished its tour with a 6-4-1 record against a combination of European national and "major league: teams. Travel destinations included France (Paris), Germany (Munich and Regensburg) and the Czech Republic (Prague).
You can also keep track of OWB news via the following forms of social media:*Facebook: www.facebook.com/oldworldbaseball.
*Gamechanger: 2013 trip boxscores are available via Gamechanger at http://gc.io/team-51a8e688de0b8838ba565dbb. Old World Baseball Summer 13 is the team name.
Just prior to OWB's 2013 trip to Europe, the Philadelphia Daily News wrote a piece about Lehigh-bound P/OF Matt Kozemchak.
Both OWB co-founders have a number of connections with the recently completed World Baseball Classic. Among other things, The Netherlands, a WBC semi-finalist, is the same team that Stephan Rapaglia (then field manager of the Great Britain National Team) coached against in the final of the 2007 European Championships, and Tom Gillespie worked with some of Team Italy's stars at the MLB European Academy.
Tom Gillespie recently returned from Uganda after spending a week running coach and player clinics for the Ugandan Baseball and Softball Federation. Click the headline to see a photo. In 2010, Tom spent time in Uganda working with many of the members of the Uganda Little League team that qualified for the LLWS.
OWB Co-Founder Stephan Rapaglia recently participated in MLB's World Baseball Classic Qualification tournament as the bench coach for the Great Britain Men's National Team.
OWB's 2012 trip to Europe (July 9 - 19, 2012) has now ended, and it was a great success. The trip included 9 games in 10 days and visits to 8 cities in 3 countries. The OWB team stayed in modern hotels and historic castles, and team activities included walking tours in Amsterdam and Antwerp, as well as bike tours through Bruges and the surrounding Belgian countryside and along the Rhine River in Germany.
Stephan Rapaglia is quoted multiple times in a ESPN.com feature article on the rise of European baseball:http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/6948276/mlb-baseball-europe-take-off.
Tom Gillespie ran coaching and player clinics in Uganda in 2010, where he worked with many of the members of the Little League team recently featured on ESPN (http://search.espn.go.com/uganda-baseball/videos/6).
OWB's July 2011 High School Trip involved visits to 7 cities in 3 countries, with games against 4 different national teams.