Help baseball grow in Ireland by helping the Baseball United Foundation

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People are always asking me around this time of year what sort of baseball gifts to buy friends and family. I don’t always have a good answer to that, but this is a great answer for someone who is both into baseball and Irish heritage, and I know there are a lot of those folks out there: Irish baseball merch.

That merch comes from the Baseball United Foundation, which is a charitable organization whose goal is to grow the game of baseball Ireland. It’s a great time for it too, as the game has started to take hold over the past decade or two and could really use a shove.

Sorry Old Hoss Radbourn. The Irish really do like baseball. Irish immigrants formed its foundation in the United States in the 19th century and now they’re getting back into it.

One of the bigger things the Baseball United Foundation does is ship equipment over to Ireland to help youth baseball grow. They buy it with money, of course, and to do that they have to obtain money. They take donations if you’re so inclined. They also sell some pretty cool Irish Baseball merch. Like this:

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And this:

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They have a lot of other things, one of which is a team shirt for the Belfast Northstars. Yes, baseball in Ireland is both orange and green, thank you. Sales of the Northstars merch goes directly to the Northstars.

So: get some cool stuff and help baseball grow. Sound like a plan? Of course it does.

Marcus Stroman loses no-hit bid in the seventh inning of WBC final against Puerto Rico

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
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Update (11:57 PM ET): And it’s over. Angel Pagan led off the bottom of the seventh with a line drive double down the left field line off of Stroman, ending the no-hitter. Manager Jim Leyland immediately removed Stroman from the game.

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U.S. starter Marcus Stroman has held Puerto Rico hitless through six innings thus far in the World Baseball Classic final. The Blue Jays’ right-hander has held the opposition to just one base runner — a walk — with three strikeouts on 68 pitches.

WBC rules limit a pitcher to throwing a maximum of 95 pitches in the Championship Round, so Stroman has 27 pitches left with which to play. If he hits the limit during the at-bat, he can continue throwing to the completion of that at-bat. Needless to say, though, Stroman won’t be finishing his potential no-no.

The U.S. has given four runs of support to Stroman. Ian Kinsler hit a two-run homer in the third inning. Then, in the fifth, Christian Yelich and Andrew McCutchen both provided RBI singles. Update: The U.S. tacked on three more in the top of the seventh when Brandon Crawford drove in two with a bases-loaded single and Giancarlo Stanton followed up with an RBI single.

We’ll keep you updated as Stroman and any pitchers that follow him attempt to complete the no-hitter. Shairon Martis is the only player to throw a no-hitter in WBC history. However, the game ended after seven innings due to the mercy rule, or as it’s known now, the “early termination” rule.

Video: Ian Kinsler homers in WBC final, rounds bases solemnly

Harry How/Getty Images
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Ian Kinsler found himself in hot water on Wednesday evening when he criticized the way players from Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic play baseball. It is his hope that kids watching the World Baseball Classic decide to emulate the emotionless way players from the U.S. play baseball as opposed to the exciting, cheerful way players from other countries tend to play the game.

Needless to say, Kinsler’s comments didn’t sit well with many people, but he has the most recent laugh. Kinsler broke a scoreless tie in the top of the third inning of Wednesday night’s WBC final against Puerto Rico, slugging a two-run home run to left-center field at Dodger Stadium off of Seth Lugo.

Kinsler, of course, rounded the bases solemnly which is sure to highlight just how cool and exciting the game of baseball is to international viewers.