Keletas Vilniaus žaidėjų vasarą papildys Amerikos beisbolo komandų gretas. Apie du iš jų, Luką Bradauską ir Gytį Martūną, rašo Blue Wave.
Parodykit, kad lietuviai moka žaisti beisbolą.
Straipsnis iš Blue Wave Baseball
Lithuanian Prospects Will Play With Blue Wave This Summer
Two of Lithuania’s top high school prospects will be honing their skills in America this summer as part of player exchange program with Blue Wave Baseball.
Catcher Gytis Martunas and first baseman Lukas Bradauskas (both 17) plan to play on Blue Wave’s 18U Connie Mack teams this summer to prepare for the European Championships in July.
“We are excited about the opportunity for our players to experience different cultures and make baseball friends around the world,” Blue Wave President Steve Kruse noted. “Baseball in Lithuania has been growing steadily; it is a popular sport, with both Little League and PONY programs.”
Both players will arrive from the northern Europe nation of 3.4-million people at the end of May and return for the European Championships July 4-10. They also hope to return after the European championships to finish off the Connie Mack season with their Blue Wave team and host family.
“We want our guests to see what it is like to play baseball in America at this age level, as well as make some lifetime friendships with some great families,” Kruse said.
Gytis and Martunas both live in Vilnius, the largest city and capital of Lithuania, where they attend secondary school (high school) and have played baseball since they were young, starting with Little League.
Gytis played for the Lithuanian 1st Division (adults) team “Vilnius Sporto Vilkai” for the past two seasons and is also the catcher for the Lithuanian U18 National Team. He also attended the MLB European Academy, an event held in Italy that hosts the top 50 players in Europe aged 20 and under.
Besides baseball, Gytis enjoys spending time with his family; his mother rand father recently opened their own “electrical works” company.
Lukas is an outfielder, pitcher, and also plays for the Lithuanian U18 team that will compete in the European Championships. He has been described by his coaches as “the strongest player for his age in Lithuania.”
“Lukas is incredibly competitive and a hard worker,” reported Will Gordon, director of Foreign Affairs/Game Development for the Lithuanian Baseball Association.
Both players will stay with host families for the four to six weeks of the summer 2011 season. Families basically allow the players to live with them, feed them, and help them get to practice and games. Both players speak English and have their own spending and expense money.
“Our goal is to give both boys a sample of what American life is all about, as well as to develop friendships that can last a lifetime,” Kruse explained. “And, at the same time, help develop them as ball players and, hopefully, they can contribute to the success of our teams this summer as well.”
Kruse said one Blue Wave family has volunteered to host one of the players, but one more host family is still needed. If one family can host both players, that would be ideal. Anyone interested should simply contact Steve Kruse at Blue Wave Baseball.
The Republic of Lithuania (Lithuanian: Lietuvos Respublika) is a country variously defined as being part of Eastern or Northern Europe. Situated along the south-eastern shore of the Baltic Sea, sharing borders with Latvia to the north, Belarus to the southeast, Poland, and the Russian exclave of the Kaliningrad Oblast to the southwest. Lithuania is a member of NATO and of the European Union. The population is 3.4 million, the largest city and the capital is Vilnius.
During the 1300s, Lithuania was the largest country in Europe, as present-day Belarus, Ukraine, and parts of Poland and Russia were territories of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. With the Lublin Union of 1569 Poland and Lithuania formed a new state: the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, which was finally destroyed by its neighboring countries in 1795. Most of Lithuania’s territory was annexed by the Russian Empire, until the Act of Independence was signed on February 16, 1918, which declared re-establishment of a sovereign state. Between 1940 and 1945 Lithuania was occupied by several powers — Soviet Union, Nazi Germany. When World War II was near its end in 1944 and the Nazis retreated, Lithuania would again be merged into the Soviet Union. On March 11, 1990, Lithuania became the first Soviet republic to declare its renewed independence.
Present-day Lithuania has one of the fastest growing economies in the European Union. Lithuania became a full member of the Schengen Agreement on 21 December 2007. In 2009 Lithuania will celebrate the millennium of its name.