Jewish baseball collectors rejoice!

Israel Sports Radio has published the Team Israel roster for the qualifying rounds of the 2013 World Baseball Classic.

WBC rules allow non-Israeli citizens of Jewish heritage to compete on behalf of Israel in the tournament. As such, the team is composed mostly of Jewish American minor leagues baseball players. Most of these players have baseball cards available for purchase.

It's been my experience that many of these players are terrific about signing autographs for collectors, both in person and through the mail.

Brett Lorin

Brett Lorin signed card and note.
Photo courtesy of Joshua Platt.
David Colvin

David Colvin. Photo courtesy of Joshua Platt.
Among the members of the pitching staff are Richard BleierDavid Colvin and Brett Lorin, all of whom recently responded to a late season minor league mailing I did.
Lorin included a note with his autographed card, and Colvin was kind enough to send me his Clinton LumberKings card, at his own expense. Read more about these minor league mensches in this posting.
 
Pitcher Eric Berger is a generous in-person signer. I corresponded with Berger via Twitter before I met him after a Columbus Clippers game early in May. He autographed seven or eight cards for me.
During a nearly 30-minute pre-game interview he granted for me in June, Berger told me "to represent Israel would be really cool." I'm thrilled for Eric to have this chance!

Also on the pitching staff are three native Israelis. Dan Rothem pitched in the short-lived Israel Baseball League in 2007. He's got a card in the Jewish Major Leaguers limited edition IBL card set. Get information on the cards, and other IBL memorabilia in this JewishSportsCollectibles.com posting.

Former Jewish Major Leaguers on the Team Israel roster include manager Brad AusmusShawn Green (DH) and Gabe Kapler (OF) will serve as player-coaches, while Andrew Lorraine handles the pitching coach duties. Josh Satin, a Mets minor leaguer who played in the Majors as a 2011 September call up is slated to play second base. All have signed autographs for me in response to previous through-the-mail requests I've done over the last four years.

Brad Ausmus 
Gabe Kapler 
 Josh Satin Sand Gnats  Andrew Lorraine

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Israel Tshirt

Team Israel t-shirt. Photo courtesy of PrintoMojo.com.
Regardless of the fact that Team Israel's WBC tournament run could be limited to just two games, there will — no doubt — be an array of collectibles available for Jewish baseball collectors, as described in this JewishSportsCollectibles.com posting about Team Israel collectibles.
Team Israel Hat

Official Team Israel World Baseball Classic hat. Photo courtesy of MLB.com.
Collectors can already purchase well-designed team logo t-shirts from PrintMojo.com, and the MLB.com Shop is selling slick Team Israel fitted baseball caps, as detailed in this previous posting.
 
Other memorabilia on the market now includes game tickets. Roger Dean Stadium will host the WBC qualifiers in which Israel plays. Tickets are not commemorative; they are, rather, standard tickets, featuring team names, dates of games and along with seating information. Tickets are available at the stadium and from TicketMaster.com for $8-14 (plus fees and shipping costs). I cannot, unfortunately, attend the series, but did buy a ticket as a keepsake for my collection.
Martin Abramowitz, publisher of the Jewish Major Leaguer card series, indicated in a post in early August on Team Israel's Facebook page that he planned to include an Israel WBC card in a planned 2015 release of JML cards. Can't wait to see the set!

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Stay tuned to JewishSportsCollectibles.com over the next weeks. I'll be publishing a posting a series of Team Israel player collectible profiles on the site.

In the meantime, please comment below to let readers know what player cards and memorabilia you have in your Jewish baseball collection, to share photos of the games, or just express your excitement as Team Israel prepares to take the diamond on the world stage.