Today, the KNBSB (Royal Dutch Baseball and Softball Federation) announced the final 28 players who will represent the Kingdom of the Netherlands with the Premier 12 tournament in Novermber.
The big names on the roster are Andruw Jones, Wladimir Balentien and Jair Jurrjens. These three had a rather extensive career in the Majors or at AAA.
Andruw Jones doesn’t need any introduction. He debuted in 1996 with the Atlanta Braves and played his final MLB game (so far) in 2012. With participating in this tournament he will make his final try to gain a spot on an MLB roster.
Wladimir Balentien also played in the Bigs and debuted for the Seattle Mariners in 2007. After stints with the Mariners and the Reds he went to Japan where he signed a deal with the Tokyo Yakult Swallows. In 2013 he broke the long standing homerun record of Sadaharu Oh when he finished the season with 60 dingers.
Pitcher Jair Jurrjens debuted with the Detroit Tigers. In 2007 he threw his first pitch in the MLB vs the Cleveland Indians.
In the off season, Jurrjens was traded to the Braves where he had the best period of his career. After several injuries, Jurrjens became a free agent in 2012. After he signed with the Orioles, they re-signed him to a minor league contract due to new medical information. After the Orioles released him he signed with Detroit. In 2014 he signed with the Reds and was traded later that year to the Rockies. After his debut with the team, he was hospitalized due to altitude sickness. Jurrjens spent the 2015 season with the Rockies’ AAA affiliate in Albuquerque before he was released on August 28.
Managers Hensley Meulens and Steve Janssen had to make a couple of decisions after the training camp at Curacao where the team played two games vs an all star team of the Curacaoan competition.
The following players will head to Taiwan at the end of this month:
Rob Cordemans (L&D Amsterdam Pirates), Diegomar Markwell (Curacao Neptunus), Jair Jurrjens (Albuquerque Isotopes), Shairon Martis (Lincoln SaltDogs), Juan Carlos Sulbaran (Omaha StormChasers), Loek van Mil (Curacao Neptunus/Rochester RedWings), Berry van Driel (Curacao Neptunus), Bayron Cornellise (Vaessen Pioniers), Kevin Heijstek (L&D Amsterdam Pirates), Tom Stuifbergen (Corendon Kinheim), Orlando Yntema (Curacao Neptunus), Jim Ploeger (UVV) and Mike Bolsenbroek (Regensburg Legionaere).
Shawn Zarraga (Oklahoma City Dodgers), Dashenko Ricardo (Corendon Kinheim), Gianison Boekhoudt (Curacao Neptunus)
Andruw Jones (-), Curt Smith (Lincolsn SaltDogs), Hainley Statia (-), Carlton Daal (Daytona Tortugas), Yurendell DeCaster (Piratas de Campeche) en Sharlon Schoop (Norfolk Tides)
Randolph Oduber (Potomac Nationals), Christopher Garia (High Desert Mavericks), Kalian Sams (Quebec Capitales) en Wladimir Balentien (Yakult Swallows)
Dwayne Kemp (Curacao Neptunus) en Gianfranco Wawoe (Clinton LumberKings)
The two biggest absentees are Rick van den Hurk, who is currently preparing with his team for the Nippon Series (the NPB championship) and Roger Bernadina who has joined the ranks of the Yaquis de Obregón in the Liga Mexicana del Pacífico.