Since 1978 USA Baseball has been the national governing body (NGB) for the sport of baseball. It represents the sport in the United States as a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) and internationally as a member federation of the International Baseball Federation (IBAF).
Nearly every major national amateur baseball organization in America is united as a USA Baseball National Member Organization. As a result, USA Baseball governs more than 12 million amateur players in ballparks and playgrounds across the country.
As the commissioner's office for amateur baseball, USA Baseball is a resource center for its various membership groups, fans, and players. USA Baseball is also responsible for promoting and developing the game of baseball on the grassroots level, both nationally and internationally.
Since 1999, USA Baseball has been selecting teams of professional-level minor league players to represent the United States in various international competitions, including the World Baseball Classic, Olympic Games and World Cup.
Among the first teams of professional players that USA Baseball fielded was the 2000 U.S. Olympic Baseball Team, managed by Tommy Lasorda at the Sydney Games. Led by Ben Sheets, the team of minor league players defeated Cuba for the gold medal.
For the inaugural 2006 World Baseball Classic, USA Baseball selected its first team comprised of Major League Baseball players. The team featured such stars as Chase Utley, Derek Jeter and Chipper Jones. In the second installment of the WBC in 2009, with players like Dustin Pedroia, Ryan Braun, Jeter, and Jimmy Rollins donning the red, white and blue, the U.S. team finished fourth, losing to Japan in the semifinals.
Other recent highlights for the Professional Team include World Cup gold in 2007, a team which featured current big league star Evan Longoria, and a bronze medal at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games behind young prospects Stephen Strasburg, Dexter Fowler and Matt LaPorta.
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