International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Jacques Rogge said baseball could improve its chances of returning to the Olympic Games if it included top major league stars. Rogge said Saturday while attending the bronze-medal game at Wukesong Stadium between the United States and Japan, “it would do good for baseball, like every sport, to have the stars”. While citing several basketball and hockey stars participating in the Olympics Rogge said, “so we would love to have as many stars of the major leagues as possible”.
Baseball is off the roster for the London 2012 Games and the earliest it could return, if at all, would be in eight years for the following Games, reports the Associated Press.
IBAF President Harvey Schiller hopes major leaguers would be involved in some capacity if baseball does return to the program, and according to the Associated Press, Rogge agrees that’s of utmost importance.
Since the baseball season overlaps with the Olympics Schiller points to the possibility of having the big league players participate for only the medal rounds. That way they would not be away from their teams for an extended period or miss a pennant race.
Some ideas tossed around that could accommodate baseball’s return to the Games is an approximate five-day all-star break and five-day Olympic tournament, ensuring little disruption to the baseball schedule.