A minor all-star catcher in the Czech Republic? For the country instead of big league dreams

The Czech national team sent only native-born players and domestic league players to the German qualifiers and won the WBC finals. These players defeated France, Germany, and Spain armed with minor league prospects or major league careers to advance to the finals.

However, a player with a unique career stands out. Catcher Martin Servenka is a player who has played in 617 minor league games, challenging the major leagues just two years ago.

In 2018, while playing in Double-A, he was also voted an Eastern League All-Star. Dylan Tate (Baltimore), who appeared in the All-Star game with Servenka at the time, became the U.S. national team. Toronto’s future Bo Bichet and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. were also All-Stars at this time.

Servenka continued his challenge to the major leagues with the Mets through Cleveland, San Francisco, and Baltimore. He also competed in spring camp exhibition games in 2019 and 2020. However, he was released after the season ended with a batting average of only 0.183 in 72 games for the Triple-A team under the Mets in 2021. He now plays for the Czech Extraliga Prague Eagles while working as a salesperson.

In the WBC German qualifier held last September, he appeared in all four games and led the team on both offense and defense with 6 hits in 16 at-bats, a batting average of 0.375, 2 homers and 5 RBIs. After a 7-21 loss to Spain in their first match메이저놀이터, the Czech Republic defeated France, Germany, and Spain again to advance to the WBC finals for the first time ever.

In a written interview on the 4th, Servenka said, “I am proud of the achievements we have achieved as a team. done,” he said.

Even while playing in the minor leagues, he wore the Czech team’s uniform whenever the opportunity arose. He competed at the 2012 European Championships, 2017 WBC qualifiers, and 2020 Tokyo Olympic qualifiers. At this time, many of the players also worked together in the WBC preliminary round. “One of our greatest strengths is that we know each other well after playing together for a long time,” Servenka said.

At the same time, with the inauguration of coach Pavel Hadim, he boasted of the promising players who joined him. “Another advantage is that there are young players who want to show their skills on the world stage,” said Servenka.

From the 10th of next month, the Czech Republic will face China-Japan-Korea-Australia in turn. It is considered a difficult team to advance to the second round in terms of power, but coach Hadim hopes to secure the right to advance to the next tournament by finishing in the final 16th. For the finals, former major league infielder Eric Sogard, Arizona prospect pitcher Boris Bezerka, and college baseball prospect infielder Willie Escara were brought in to strengthen their power.

Servenka said, “I want us to play in the right way. The right way in my opinion is to play hard and compete through 9 innings. It’s a result that everyone made. I hope everyone can enjoy it together.”

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