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AL THOMAS CLUB TO PLAY EXHIBITION GAME VS. IRISH NATIONAL BASEBALL TEAM

The Al Thomas Baseball Club has added an exciting game to its 2010 schedule - a nine-inning exhibition game against the Irish National Baseball Team. The 2:00 game will take place on Sunday, July 25 at Cunningham Park in Milton with pregame player introductions and both the Irish and American national anthems.

The Irish team will wrap up its 2010 trip to the U.S. with the contest against the A's. Milton residents Nat and Doug Anglin have been members of the team for several years, while Nat also played two seasons for the Al Thomas Club.

[the following information is from the website of the Irish National Baseball Team]

Adult level Baseball in Ireland began to formally take shape in 1995. Visiting coaches from Major League Baseball International (MLBI) provided the much needed instruction to adult players, most of who had only played recreational softball but wished a greater competitive and athletic challenge. In 1996, with the assistance of MLBI coaches, Ireland played in its first international competition, the European Championships held in Hull, England. This international experience generated a great deal of interest in Baseball and has ultimately resulted in a ten team Adult League being formed with seven teams in Dublin, two in Belfast and one in Greystones, Co. Wicklow.

On the international scene in 1998, the Irish National Baseball Team made the quarterfinal stage in the 1998 European Championships held in Austria and finished eighth in the sixteen team tournament. The significance of this accomplishment is only fully appreciated when one considers that Ireland was the smallest of all the competing nations with many of the other federations claiming thousands of members.

Ireland’s National team hosted the Connie Mack League state champions, the Slocum Baseball Club, from Rhode Island in the United States in 1999. The four game series was a great success for all involved and has now developed into a bi-annual event in which Ireland travelled to America in August of 2001. And just when you thought it was safe to go back on the diamond, the boys from Slocum came back to Dublin in July, 2003 for a week of serious baseball and craic. Ireland also competed at international level competition when they played in the 2000 European B-Pool Championships held in Croatia and finished in fourth place at the 2002 European B-Pool Championships held in Stockholm, Sweden.

Most recently, the Irish National Team won a Bronze medal in the European B-Pool Championships held in August, 2004 in Regensburg, Germany and a Silver Medal at the 2006 European B-Pool Championships held in Antwerp, Belgium.

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