All-star Balfour to play ball on tour

Aussie pitcher Grant Balfour is about to arrive in Sydney on tour as a MLB ambassador.

Described as "a cult-figure among baseball fans for his intense on-field persona," Balfouris originally from Kings Langley in suburban Sydney,

He has put together, the finest career of any Australian Major Leaguer across eleven seasons, says MLB's Elizabeth Cage.

Balfour was selected to the 2013 American League All-Star Team, has pitched in the postseason with three clubs including with the Tampa Bay Rays in the 2008 World Series, and has a career 3.46 ERA over 528 games with 84 saves with 571 strike outs in 535.1 innings.

Balfour will arrive in Sydney next week to start an eight-day ambassador tour and will meet fans and throw out the first pitch as the Sydney Blue Sox host the Adelaide Bite.

Events will include visits to Canberra, Brisbane and Melbourne and training sessions with junior players at Coomera, Gold Coast.

Training with the Pros is a programme run by Major League Baseball in partnership with Baseball Australia and the teams of the Australian Baseball League which provides skill-training from Australian and imported professional baseball players.

The Australian Baseball League is in its fifth season as the nation's professional baseball league and features six teams each playing a 48-game season with a championship series in early February.

The six teams are: the Adelaide Bite, the Brisbane Bandits, the Canberra Cavalry, the Melbourne Aces, the Perth Heat and the Sydney Blue Sox.

Australian players are strongly represented in the MLB leagues in the USA, reports Cage.

Major League Baseball International focuses on the worldwide growth of baseball, committed to showcasing the world's best baseball talent through international events around the globe and represented in Beijing, New York, London, Sydney and Tokyo.

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