BALTIMORE (WJZ) — After impressing organizers of the prestigious Wilson Premier baseball tournament program in 2016, the Baltimore Orioles will host 15 days of competition in Sarasota County this summer from June 22 through July 12 during the Wilson Premier Championship East. The event is one of the largest Florida-based tournaments in amateur baseball and the largest tournament the Orioles have drawn to Sarasota County.
“Wilson Premier brought a weekend tournament to us last September to test the waters, and we demonstrated that Sarasota County and the Orioles’ facilities are ideal for elite competition and larger events,” said David Rovine, Vice President of Orioles-Sarasota. “The Wilson Premier Championship East is an opportunity for college and professional baseball scouts to see young players in action.”
The tournament will include 240 teams from across the country. Players ages 15 to 17 will compete during five-day tournaments that span three weeks.
Games will be played on the five fields at the Buck O’Neil Baseball Complex at Twin Lakes Park, as well as the main field and three practice fields at Ed Smith Stadium.
“The drawing power for Sarasota is the combination of community assets, the quality and number of playing fields at the Orioles’ facilities and elsewhere in the region, and the can-do attitude of the Orioles’ staff,” said MATT BLIVEN, Wilson Tournament Director. “We are impressed by the professional facilities for the teams, which allow us to showcase talents of players for visiting scouts.”
Most tournaments hosted by the Orioles also use additional venues from Bradenton to Ft. Myers. Examples include Perfect Game and Suncoast/USSSA, which combined will host 10 weekend tournaments in the region this year, generating millions of dollars in economic impact for Sarasota County and surrounding communities.