(AFP) – Jan 8, 2010
TOKYO — US Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig has proposed to launch a "global World Series" between US and Japanese champion clubs, press reports said Friday.
Selig's Japanese counterpart, Nippon Professional Baseball commissioner Ryozo Kato, told Japanese media on Thursday the proposal was made when they met in Milwaukee on Tuesday.
"Mr Selig has expressed his enthusiasm to realise (the series) while he is in office," Kato was quoted as saying in the daily Sankei Shimbun's Internet edition. "He emphasised that the real World Series will be important not only for Japan and the United States but also for the world."
Selig, who is due to retire in 2012, "said he was not floating the idea as a dream but he wanted to deal with it as a real issue", the Nikkan Sports daily quoted Kato as saying.
MLB has been staging the so-called World Series since 1903 between the champion clubs of its American and National Leagues.
Since then the game has spread, particularly in Latin America, the Caribbean and the Asia-Pacific region.
The Japan Series has been contested between the champions of the country's Central and Pacific Leagues since 1950.
Japan won the inaugural 2006 World Baseball Classic, a country-by-country tournament created by MLB to emulate the success of the football World Cup. Japan retained the title last year.
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