world’s best teams of 13- and 14-year-old baseball players have arrived in
Taylor for the 36th annual Junior League World Series.
ceremonies are at 8 p.m. Saturday, August 13, at World Series Field in Taylor’s
Heritage Park, 12111 Pardee Road. Admission to opening ceremonies is free.
festivities will include a colorful walking parade, speeches and presentations
by dignitaries, a special ceremonial first pitch featuring former Taylor Major
League pitcher Steve Avery and fireworks.
teams from around the world will compete for the world championship of the 13-
and 14-year-old division of Little League Baseball. It’s the biggest field of
teams in the history of the event.
games are scheduled on Sunday, August 14, opening day on World Series Field in
Taylor’s Heritage Park. The international tournament will continue through next
Sunday, August 21, when the world champion will be crowned in an ESPN-televised
game starting at 1 p.m.
Asia-Pacific champions from Chinese Taipei won the World Series for the third
straight time last year. A team from the Shing-Ming Junior Little League in
Taoyuan City will attempt to defend the title in what amounts to a seventh
straight appearance in Taylor for a team from Chinese Taipei. In 2015, Tai
Chung, Taiwan, won the title for the second straight year.
Taipei plays at 2 p.m. Sunday against first-time JLWS entry Cronulla in Sydney,
New South Wales, Australia. For the first time ever, the Australian national
champion was granted an automatic berth in the series due to the impressive
growth and popularity of Little League-type baseball on the continent.
all, six teams make up the International bracket of the 2016 World Series. The
others are Latin America regional champion Tomas Munoz Little League from Juan
Diaz, Panama; the South Czech Republic Little League from Brno, Czech Republic,
making its third straight JLWS appearance by Czech teams; the national
champions of Mexico from the Linda Vista Junior League in Guadalupe, Nuevo
Leon; and the Lethbridge Southwest Little League from Alberta, the Canadian
teams will represent Junior League regions of the United States. Teams earning
regional championships include the Northeast/Fraternal Northwest Little Leagues
from Midland, Michigan (USA Central Region); Padre Little League in Corpus
Christi, Texas (Southwest); the Northwood Little League from Taylors, South
Carolina (Southeast); the West Salisbury Little League from Salisbury, Maryland
(East); the Kawaihau Community Little League from Kapaa Kauai, Hawaii (West).
series’ opening game on Sunday is Hawaii vs. Maryland at 11 a.m. Sunday. After
the Chinese Taipei-Australia game at 2 p.m., the games continue with South
Carolina vs. the Central Region champion at 5 p.m. and Canada vs. Mexico at 8
continue throughout the week. For the first time at the JLWS, teams play a new “modified
double-elimination” format mandated by Little League International. Teams play
a regular double-elimination schedule to determine the finalists for the
International (3 p.m. Friday, August 20) and USA (6 p.m. Friday) championship
the August 20 winners play in the world championship game at 1 p.m. Sunday,
Series organizers noted that all teams arrive in Taylor as champions, having
won national and/or regional tournaments played around the globe.
a new continent in the World Series and a new tournament format, fans can
expect to see a new bullpen along the right field line and upgrades to signage,
the video scoreboard and the Memorial Garden on the grounds of World Series
to the games is $5 per carload per day or $15 for a week’s pass. Both prices
Park is located at 12111 Pardee Road. A second entrance is on Northline Road at
Junior League World Series is considered the “older brother” of the famous
Little League World Series for 12-year-old players in Williamsport,
series tout former players who went on to professional sports careers. At least
12 former Junior League World Series competitors have gone on to professional
baseball in the Major Leagues: current Philadelphia Phillies infielder Freddy
Galvas, former Detroit Tiger Gary Sheffield, Eric Bedard, Brett Myers, brothers
Jose and Javier Valentin, Erubiel Durazo, Chad Hermansen, Derek Bell, Delino
DeShields, Shannon Withem, Adam Loewen and Chris Brock.
future stars to play in Taylor have included Chris Dingman and Steve
Reinprecht, who went on to play in the National Hockey League; Matt Cassell,
who continues to play in the National Football League; Mark “Bo” Pelini, a
well-known former college football player and current coach.
World Series operates on the generosity of sponsors, fundraising efforts and
other donations, along with an all-volunteer staff. To make a tax-deductible
donation or to become a series volunteer, contact Greg Bzura at (734) 306-3113