Baseball may be America’s national pastime, but today it is also a global sport.
The Royal Canadian Mint is celebrating the most visible manifestation of its worldwide reach, the World Baseball Classic, with seven collector coins.
The 2013 edition of the international tournament is being held from March 2 to 19. It debuted in 2006 as a reaction to the International Olympic Committee’s decision to drop baseball from the Olympics following the 2008 Summer Games. The second tournament was held in 2009, and the event is now scheduled to occur every four years.
The officially licensed coin program from the RCM offers four Proof .9999 fine silver $20 coins and three Proof .9999 fine gold coins, two denominated $75 and one $150. Steve Hepburn designed the reverses for all of the coins.
The silver $20 coins celebrate what the RCM calls the four positions in the sport: pitcher, fielder, runner and batter (there are actually nine positions with varying names). The four coins highlight types of action that occur in the game.
A baseball soars in full flight on the Hardball $75 coin, while two interlocked bats flank the field on the Ball Diamond $75 coin. A joyous baserunner, viewed from behind, exults in victory, hands extended into the air as he runs to join his teammates (who are not shown) on the $150 coin.
The main themes are layered over an abstract circling form that represents the event’s speed, skill and international inclusiveness, according to the RCM.
Each reverse also displays the World Baseball Classic logo.
The Susanna Blunt effigy of Queen Elizabeth II appears on the obverse of all these coins.
The $20 coins each weigh 31.39 grams and measure 38 millimeters in diameter. The $75 coins each weigh 7.8 grams and measure 20 millimeters in diameter. The $150 coin weighs 15.59 grams and is 25 millimeters in diameter.
With a mintage limit of 7,500 pieces per design, the $20 coins retail for $114.95 each.
The $75 and $150 coins are each limited to a mintage of 3,500 pieces; the $75 coins cost $899.95 each and the $150 coin costs $1,549.95.
All prices are listed in Canadian dollars. The U.S. prices for collectors in the United States buying from the RCM fluctuate with the exchange rate, calculated at the time of purchase.
Telephone the RCM inside the United States at 800-268-6468. In Canada, telephone the RCM at 800-267-1871. Visit the RCM website at www.mint.ca.
Three United States distributors for the RCM carry the coin at fixed prices in U.S. dollars.
Gatewest Coin Ltd., Brian Jenner Inc. and Talisman Coins are all official distributors for the RCM.
To contact Gatewest, telephone the firm at 204-489-9112 or visit www.gatewestcoin.com.
Write to Jenner at P.O. Box 2466-a, Pasco, WA 99302, or telephone him at 509-735-2172.
Telephone Talisman at 888-552-2646 or visit the firms’ website at www.talismancoins.com. ■