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2021 World Baseball Classic

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    It looks like the 2020 WBCQ schedule release will be latest in WBC history. Here are schedules for 2012 and 2016:


    Pool 1 in Blacktown February 10-13
    Pool 2 in Mexicali March 17-20
    Pool 3 in Panama City March 17-20
    Pool 4 in Brooklyn September 22-25

    2012 FOUR IN FALL

    Pool 1 in Jupiter September 19-23
    Pool 2 in Regensburg September 20-24
    Pool 3 in Panama City November 15-19
    Pool 4 in New Taipei City November 15-18

    Assume the 2020 Qualifier starts on the same date as did the 2016 Qualifier. Then it would begin February 10, 2020.

    That is less than five months from now, or only 135 days from now.
    Last edited by PLowry; 09-27-2019, 07:17 PM.


    • NBC sports article reads that Arizona will hold a 2020 qualifier that will host Spain,Germany and France and another team. France might be managed by the Giant's Bouchy.


      • One element of the WBC scheduling process is whether to use the round robin with a tie-breaker, or the modified double elimination (MDE). As we can guess, both have their advantages and disadvantages. Which is better ? The WBC doesn't seem to know which is better. They used the round robin in 2006, the modified double elimination (MDE) in 2009, the modified double elimination in 2012, the round robin in 2013, the modified double elimination in 2016, and the round robin in 2017.

        So the WBC has used the round robin three times, and the modified double elimination three times. Which is better in my opinion ? The round robin, but its weakness is the tie-breaker. If the tie-breaker is straightforward, then it is best. But if the tie-breaker rule requires advanced mathematics to understand, then the MDE is better. Let's take a look at some pools.


        In the 2006 First Round, the final standings were: South Korea 3-0, Japan 2-1, Taiwan 1-2, and China 0-3. In this case, there are no arguments. South Korea and Japan advance.

        But in the same round, a different pool had these final standings: Mexico 2-1, US 2-1, Canada 2-1, South Africa 0-3. The tiebreaker was Runs Allowed per 9 Innings Pitched: Mexico finished first with 1.59, US finished second with 4.00, and Canada finished third with 7.50. Canada was eliminated, and Mexico and US advanced. Canada had a legitimate argument, since on the field of play it had defeated US 8-6. In addition, the tiebreaker seems unbalanced, since it values pitching and defense highly and it values hitting and offense not at all. In addition, almost nobody understood the tie-breaker rule.

        Here is another example of the round robin in 2006 where there is controversy. Here are the final standings: South Korea 3-0, Japan 1-2, Mexico 1-2, US 1-2. The tiebreaker is Japan 2.55, US 2.65, and Mexico 3.50, so Japan advances along with South Korea. US has a legitimate argument since it beat Japan 4-3 on the field of play.

        The round robin also once ended up with these standings: Dominicana 2-1, Cuba 2-1, Puerto Rico 1-2, Venezuela 1-2. No argument in this case. Both Dominicana and Cuba advance.


        In the case of MDE, there is never an argument as to which two teams advance. But there are strong indications that it is an unfair system. After five games, the MDE results in the following standings: Japan 2-0, South Korea 2-2, China 1-2, Taiwan 0-2. All rounds played with MDE result in these exact standings.after five games. In this case, South Korea won the sixth game, so first place South Korea 3-1 and second place Japan 2-1 both advance. If Japan had won the sixth game, then first place Japan 3-0 and second place South Korea 2-2 would have advanced. Since the same result occurs no matter who wins the sixth game, most people are confused why the game is even played. The other argument against the MDE is that some teams played each other twice, and some teams never play each other at all. In this case, South Korea and Japan played each other twice, but Japan and Taiwan never played each other.

        In the most celebrated of all WBC tie-breaker cases, and the only one which has occurred under MDE, the first six games of the 2017 First Round in Zapopan, Mexico produced these standings: Puerto Rico 3-0, Mexico 1-2, Italy 1-2, and Venezuela 1-2. In the aftermath of the sixth game, won by Mexico over Venezuela 11-9, the Mexican team, managers, and fans all thought certain they had qualified to advance to the Second Round. It turned out that the three teams tied had all beaten each other: Italy 10 Mexico 9; Venezuela 11 Italy 10; and Mexico 11 Venezuela 9. Mexico argued that it had won by two runs, and Italy and Venezuela had won by only one run. The late-night arguments got very heated, and lasted into the wee hours of the morning. Local game officials ruled that the tie-breaker procedure called for Italy and Venezuela to have a one-game playoff the next afternoon, which Venezuela won 4-3 in front of only a smattering of 1783 fans. There was never any announcement of what tie-breaker rules were used to decide on the one-game playoff, the only such game in WBC history.

        So which is better, round robin or MDE? Take your pick.


        • Does anyone know the exact nature of the Tie-Breaker Rule in force for the 2017 World Baseball Classic First Round in Zapopan, Mexico ? The final standings were Puerto Rico 3-0, and three nations tied at 1-2: Mexico, Italy, and Venezuela. There was great controversy at the end of the tournament, arguing about the Tie-Breaker Rule. What was decided was that a seventh game would be played the next day, with Venezuela playing against Italy. This is the only instance in WBC history that such a seventh game has been played.


          • My guess is that we will not see new WBSC Men's Baseball Rankings until late November or early December because the WBC will want to use rankings which include the November 2-19 Premier 12 tournament.


            • The WBC forum was very active before and after the 2017 WBC. However, since March 2018, it has sadly been mostly inactive. What would help energize this forum to its former levels of activity ?


              • It's hard to believe, but WBC organizers have gotten even more tight-lipped about their event. So far, there have only been two blurbs about it:

                The French team is scheduled to play March 22-27 in Tucson in a bracket that includes Germany, Spain and other countries not known as traditional powers.

                In the last week of March, just after the Olympic Qualifiers, Nicaragua will play in Tucson, Arizona in the qualifier for the World Baseball Classic 2021.


                Is it possible that the WBC Steering committee is changing the WBC Qualifier format? Four teams have been mentioned in association with Tucson, AZ, but none of those teams were relegated.


                • I've got Japan winning.
                  “There can be no higher law in journalism than to tell the truth and to shame the devil.” Walter Lippmann

                  "I don't care if the guy is yellow or black, or if he has stripes like a ******* zebra. I'm the manager of this team and I say he [Robinson] plays." - Leo Durocher


                  • Concerning the tie-breaker rule in effect in Zapopan, Mexico, the official scorer contacted me and explained what the rule was.

                    Puerto Rico was in 1st place with a 3-0 record. Italy, Mexico, and Venezuela were tied for 2nd place with 1-2 records. The tie-breaker was Runs Allowed per 9 Innings Pitched. The tie-breaker values were Italy 2nd place, Venezuela 3rd place, and Mexico 4th place. Under all tie-breaker rules I have ever heard of, Italy would advance as the 2nd place team, along with the 1st place team Puerto Rico. But this tie-breaker was different. The tie-breaker rule eliminated only the 4th place team Mexico, and called for the 2nd place team Italy and the 3rd place team Venezuela to play a tie-breaker 7th game the next afternoon. Mexico argued so vociferously that the arguments went into the early morning hours. Venezuela won the play-off game the next day 4-3, with a 3-run rally in the 9th inning.


                    • Concerning the tie-breaker rule in effect at Zapopan, Mexico in the WBC March 2017 First Round:

                      The three games used to determine the tie-breaker values were these: Italy 10 Mexico 9, Venezuela 11 Italy 10 in 10 innings, Mexico 11 Venezuela 9. Games vs. First Place Puerto Rico were not used in the calculations.

                      Buried in the fine print of the tournament rules, were two key points. First, Innings Pitched is measured by Defensive Outs. That made the critical difference for Mexico. In its 10-9 loss to Italy, Mexico recorded no Defensive Outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, as Italy scored 5 runs in the bottom of the ninth inning while not making any outs. So Mexico recorded 8 rather than 9 Innings Pitched.

                      Second, the tie breaker rules ranked the tied teams, and then the Second and Third Place teams would play a Seventh Game Playoff, something never seen before in the 2006, 2009, 2012, 2013, or 2016 Classics.

                      Here are the relevant tie-breaker values:

                      Italy Runs Allowed / Innings Pitched = (9+11)/(9+10) = 20/19 = 1.053 = lowest value = Second Place

                      Venezuela Runs Allowed / Innings Pitched = (10+11)/(10+9) = 21/19 = 1.105 = second lowest value = Third Place

                      Mexico Runs Allowed / Innings Pitched = (10+9)/(8+9) = 19/17 = 1.118 = third lowest value = Fourth Place

                      Italy argued unsuccessfully that they deserved to go to the Second Round with Puerto Rico because the Seventh Game Playoff wording had never been mentioned in the Pre-Tournament meetings.

                      Mexico argued unsuccessfully that they deserved to be in the Seventh Game Playoff vs. Italy because the Defensive Outs wording had never been mentioned in the Pre-Tournament meetings. If Mexico had been given credit for the 9th inning pitched vs. Italy, even with with no Defensive Outs recorded, then their Runs Allowed / Innings Pitched would have been (10+9)/(9+9) = 19/18 = 1.056 = second lowest value = Third Place, and therefore they should be in the Seventh Game Playoff vs. Italy instead of Venezuela.

                      Mexico had two other arguments. First, tournament officials told Mexico's Field Manager before the Mexico-Venezuela game that Mexico would be in the Seventh Game Playoff the next evening if Mexico were to win by two runs, which it did by a score of 11-9.

                      Second, immediately after the Mexico - Venezuela game, tournament officials announced that Mexico and Italy would play in the Seventh Game Playoff the next evening.These officials had calculated the tie-breaker values with Mexico receiving credit for the incorrect 9 Innings Pitched in the Mexico - Italy game, instead of the correct 8 innings pitched.

                      It was 2:00 AM local time in Zapopan before the official word came on Mexico being eliminated, and on Italy playing Venezuela the next evening.

                      If Mexico had recorded just one Defensive Out in the 9th inning vs. Italy, their tie-breaker value would have been (10+9)/8 1/3+9) = 19/17.333 = 1.096 = second lowest value = Third Place and they would have gone to the Seventh Game Playoff game vs. Italy instead of Venezuela.

                      What actually happened was that Venezuela defeated Italy 4-3 in the Seventh Game Playoff, and went to the Second Round along with Puerto Rico.
                      Last edited by PLowry; 10-31-2019, 10:47 PM.


                      • Hey fellas, I've enjoyed seeing the posts on this topic. Thanks for putting this together.
                        I think it's crazy that the committee(s) haven't announced the qualifiers yet, seems like it's about time they figure that out.

                        Here's my guess on what could happen:
                        Host Taiwan - TPE, GBR, FRA, ESP
                        Host Mexico - MEX, NCA, BRA, GER
                        Host Panama - CAN, PAN, CZE, PHI
                        Host New Zealand - CHN, RSA, NZL, PAK

                        I actually like the format of the qualifiers, so to expand the WBC, I'd relegate the teams that go 0-2 down to a pre-qualifier that takes place a year earlier than the qualifiers. I saw some listing votes for the expansion teams, so here's my votes (it looks similar to many on the chart)
                        THA, RUS, ARG, INA, AUT, HGK, BEL, SWE, SRI, CRO, PER, HON


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