Sunday, March 6, 2016
LMB president Plinio Escalante recently met with Femebe majordomo Alonso Perez after it became apparent that the Mexican team would be shorthanded with some Major League Baseball organizations dragging their feet on sending players to Mexicali for the qualifier. After an agreement was hammered out and approved by Mexican League owners and managers, Escalante and Perez jointly announced that the LMB would cooperate in sending players to the WBC event at the 17,000-seat Estadio B'Air, home to the Mexican Pacific League Aguilas.
Mexicali manager Edgar Gonzalez, whose family has had their own past differences with the Liga, will serve as skipper for the national team when they welcome sides from Nicaragua, Germany and the Czech Republic. The four-day even will open Thursday, March 17 with a doubleheader when Germany plays Nicaragua at 12:30PM PT and Mexico takes on the Czechs in the 7:30PM PT nightcap.
There are four such qualifiers scheduled this year. Australia beat out New Zealand, South Africa and The Philippines last month in Sydney. Panama City will host a qualifier the same weekend as Mexicali, with Panama, Colombia, Spain and France battling for a 2017 slot; Great Britain, Brazil, Pakistan and Israel will converge on Brooklyn for the final qualifier September 22-25.