Chicago White Sox could set up franchise in Singapore
Softball is hotly contested among some schools in the country, while baseball is still very much a sport mostly played by American and Japanese expatriates in Singapore.
But that could all change, if one of the most recognisable names in baseball sets up shop here in the next two years.
The Singapore Baseball and Softball Association (SBSA) is currently in the early stages of discussion with Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise the Chicago White Sox to open an academy in Singapore.
Speaking to The New Paper yesterday, SBSA president Jeffeury Tan said: "Singapore is one of the best places for the MLB to open up an academy.
"We have safety, accessibility and the infrastructure is already available.
"We are trying to implement youth programmes for children, and we aim to tap on the White Sox's expertise.
"Singapore already has a strong base in softball, particularly at school level, so what's next for us is baseball, and the White Sox can help in our development.
"We are hoping to have a long-term partnership with the White Sox, and the academy here will be named after them and the kids will adopt their programme.
"Their coaches will also come down to engage us and share their knowledge for the betterment of baseball and softball in Singapore, and we hope to get the academy up and running in two years."
Tan was speaking on the sidelines of the first day of the Asian Men's Championship Qualifier 2015, which serves as the continent's qualifiers for the Men's Softball World Championships in Canada next year.
Singapore beat Brunei 8-1 yesterday, but fell 3-8 to regional giants the Philippines at the Kallang ground and are currently in third position among the six nations battling for the three qualifying spots.
Softball is popular in Asia, and the Singapore men's team beat Indonesia in the final to win the South-east Asia Softball Championship in September.
The women's team claimed the silver medal at the 2007 South-east Asia (SEA) Games.
With Singapore hosting the SEA Games in June, softball will feature on the programme again.
"Our aim is to get into the final, at least... the SEA Games is our top priority, because we need to compete within the region first, and get results," said Tan.
"Plus, with the SEA Games in Singapore, we hope that more attention can be paid not only to softball, and I'm sure that it can alsoact as a springboard for softball and baseball."