Eva Voortman is starting a new blog project: „European softball life from the inside out“ and the ESF has become the official partner. Weekly blogs will bring insights into various softball players‘ lives. Together with the players‘ stories, their National Federations will be shortly introduced. The whole blog series will begin in January and will take us all the way through the season till the Women’s European Championship.

If you don’t know who Eva Voortman is, you must have spent the last year living under a rock.
When you meet Eva, you see this kind and smiling girl, you wouldn’t guess what will actually happen once you step into the batter’s box to face her. Eva is a 24-year-old Dutch National Team pitcher, who has lately become one of the stars of European softball.

During the 2016 Women’s World Championship, the Oranje’s coach Francisca Juni said: „We have two or three pitching aces in our team, because we do pitching on design.“  Clearly, Eva was one of the aces, as she took part in all of the games that took team Netherlands into the World’s top four.

Eva was born in Utrecht and started playing softball when she was nine years old. Her first team were Centrals in de Bilt, after high school she played two seasons for Chipola College, Florida, USA. Since the 2014 season she’s been playing for Olympia Haarlem. With Olympia, Eva won Women’s European Cup Winner’s Cup in 2016. Her biggest dream is to win a gold Olympic medal with the Dutch National Team. She would also love to play in Japan. Photo by Dirk Steffen.

Softball is such a huge part of Eva’s life, that she’s started her own blog - Eva Voortman: Softball life from the inside out.

In 2017, Eva is kicking off a new blog project: European softball life from the inside out.

We’ve asked Eva not only about her blog, but also about what’s behind the new project.

Q: When and why did you start your blog?
A: Last year, right before the Dutch play-offs. I had been thinking about it and decided that the off-season would be a nice time to start, but the play-offs are very exciting to write about, so I decided to start there.
My original plan was to write about what it takes to be a softball player. I wanted to make the behind the scenes a little less ‘behind’ the scenes. Unfortunately, I popped my shoulder out during the final game of the play-offs and chose to have surgery…
Change of plans! Because I wasn’t able to do any kind of ‘normal’ fitness and winter routines I had to switch my plan according to the rehab. Along the way, I have been adjusting to what was happening at the time. During the summer, it was fun to write about the softball summer and right before the start of this project I had been writing a little bit about my original plan, the winter workouts.

Q: Where did the idea for the European softball life from the inside out project come from?
A: After writing about my own life for more than a year, I realized it would be nice to know a little more about different countries and how softball is experienced there.
At international tournaments, you speak to different players from different countries, which makes you realize how different it can be.
I realized my life is completely different from for example a girl in Germany. It is only one border away and we both love the game, but our stories are unique.
The idea started with the thought of inviting girls to write, and then developed into more of a project.
Think about the European Championships and how all the countries meet there, I thought it would be fun to know a little more about each country before the start of the tournament. Softball is not known very well all over Europe, so it would be a nice way to give easy access to the world of softball.

Q: For whom is your blog intended?
A: Softball players were my main goal at the start of the blog, but with this project I’m hoping to also reach people who didn’t know as much about the sport and get interested because of the many inspiring stories.
I see it as a great way to promote the sport, it shows how dedicated each player is and how much love players have for their game.

Q: What’s the idea behind the new project and what is the cooperation with the ESF bringing into the project?
A:The project started small with just a try-out to see if girls were interested in writing a blog about themselves.
Once I felt like it would work I got in contact with the ESF. They liked the idea and offered to help me out with gathering information and contacts. I think their support will help this project to go further and reach more people, which is exactly what I would like in order to promote softball.

Q: What about the girls who are taking part in the project - what are their reactions when you ask them to participate?
A: They were very positive! Once I saw their reactions I got even more excited about the project. It was so nice to see that they love softball as well and would also like to promote it in this different and personal way. In this case, the writers are part of the players group I would love to reach, so if they are enthusiastic about it, then hopefully the readers are too.

"For the ESF this project is very exciting and we're very proud to be assisting Eva in bringing the best possible content. Creating series about European National Federations has been on my list since I was appointed the Communications Director. This is an excellent way of doing so," said Helena Novotna, ESF Communications Director.   

-Helena Novotná-