OTTAWA- Edmonton’s Madison Willan, who helped Canada capture a bronze medal at the 2018 WBSC Women’s Baseball World Cup, along with Isabella Bortolotto (Nanaimo, BC), Ellie Jespersen (Spruce Grove, AB) and Noémye Letendre (Drummondville, QC) have been selected by Major League Baseball to attend the 2019 Girls baseball Breakthrough Series from June 14 – 18 at the Jackie Robinson Training Complex in Vero Beach, Florida.
Current Women’s National Team general manager and Baseball Canada staff member André Lachance will also attend the event as an observer while providing coach education prior to the event.
The second annual event will see 65 athletes, aged 17 and under, from across the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada and one player from Belgium participate in what is described as a “groundbreaking amateur development camp designed specifically for girls baseball players”. The event serves as a platform for those players looking to pursue baseball at the next level.
Attendees will receive daily on-field instruction from former big-leaguers Dmitri Young, Lou Collier and Fernando Arroyo along with select member of the United States’ Women’s National Baseball Team.
Off-field activities include a discussion with Vice President & Special Assistant to the Commissioner, MLB Billy Bean, a Career Chat with front-office female Miami Marlins employees at Marlins Park before taking in a contest between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Miami Marlins, and presentations on careers in Baseball Operations and the collegiate recruiting process.
MLB executives Kim Ng and Tony Reagins are also scheduled to attend the event while women’s baseball pioneers Maybelle “Mae” Blair, Shirley “Hustle” Burkovich and Jeneane Lesko will also attend.
The 2019 Girls Baseball Breakthrough Series is one of three major events that Major League Baseball operates throughout the year with the focus on promoting and developing female baseball.