[http://active.typepad.com/.shared/image.html?/photos/uncategorized/amanda_freed.jpg](Brian McCall is the Communications Director for the ASA. We sat down with him to talk about the organization, the U.S. National Softball team, and the upcoming World Cup of Softball in Oklahoma City, OK July 13th-17th.)
So how do you select players to try out for the national team?
Athletes were invited to our camp in late November/early December, and 24 players were chosen for the national training team. That designates you as one of the top 24 softball players in the country and gives you the benefits of monthly training camps as well as training stipends that can really help out. From that group of 24 we selected the group of seventeen we have now.
Of the seventeen players selected how many pitchers will be taken to the World Cup?
Typically we have four on the roster. But we have a few pitchers this year that can do more than just pitch. Amanda Freed is somebody who through the Olympic process in 2004 had really moved onto the outfield. She was an All-American pitcher at UCLA but didn���t fit that role when she first got on the team. Then during last year���s Japan Cup she was used as a pitcher. So she can pretty much do it all. We have a lot of players who provide some flexibility.
And how many games will they play during world cup?
Six. A round robin tournament in which they compete against everyone--with the top two teams playing in the finals.
That���s a lot of pitching for four players.
Actually it���s not. Alicia Hollowell who just won the NCAA championship for the University of Arizona is on the team. She went 5-1 during the Softball World Series and pitched six complete games from Thursday to Monday. And that���s just for one pitcher. So really the struggle a lot of times for us with carrying that amount of pitchers is getting enough innings for people on the roster. It���s definitely not the baseball model.
For the rest of this interview check out the Active [World Cup of Softball Special Section|http://active.typepad.com/