soft hands.

The plucky crusade to introduce baseball to Ireland ignited because of a bumper sticker. Mike Kindle, an American who moved to Ireland in 1990, saw an Irish Softball Association sticker on a car and begged the driver to tell him where he could find the group. He prayed it was no joke.

Kindle found the co-ed softball players tossing high-arc pitches on a mushy field. Softball was obviously a recreational activity, like flipping a Frisbee. The discovery still motivated Kindle, who preferred the more serious style of hardball that he had left behind in San Diego.

So Kindle persistently pushed the sport of baseball on a country without a single baseball diamond at the time. Eventually, there were about 30 regulars, some taking awkward swings, some making tortured throws and most, they said, falling in love with baseball and the notion of possibly playing it for Ireland.

"We decided we should try and form an international team," Kindle said. "We said, 'Let's get some uniforms and funding and go play.' We were sitting in the boozer over a couple of pints. Over a couple of pints, it sounded good."

The story of the recent birth of baseball in Ireland, its growth and its baby steps in international competition is told in "The Emerald Diamond," a film by John J. Fitzgerald. The film will be shown in 20 cities and towns throughout the United States, starting Feb. 25 at the Jacob Burns Film Center in Pleasantville, N.Y. [ny times]
7:37 AM :: ::
  • I wish I could move to Ireland and be the biggest baseball star in the country.

    Big fish, small pond. *sigh*

    By Blogger Mr. Faded Glory, at 12:43 AM   <$BlogItemControl$>
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