MLB Rumors: MLB To Open 2014 Season In Australia?
Baseball will be trying to strengthen its game by moving to another continent to open a season. There have been discussions to bring the opening series of the 2014 season to Australia and that Australian promoters are pushing the Los Angeles Dodgers into being in that supposed series.
MLB spokesperson Pat Courtney denied any rumors saying:
“We are not currently exploring the possibility with the Dodgers or any other team to play in Australia.”
However, a report in the Sydney Morning Herald said that the Dodgers are being targeted because of owner Magic Johnson‘s involvement with the team and the Arizona Diamondbacks have already been picked as the Dodgers’ opponents.
General manager of the Diamondbacks Derrick Hall said that if given the chance to play overseas, the team would take the opportunity.
It is no secret that Major League Baseball has been broadening its borders to go with the NFL and the NBA in expanding its respective sport around the world. Unlike the NFL and NBA, the MLB has done a bit less than either organization. The NFL started playing regular season games in London a few years back and the NBA has preseason tours around the globe including China.
For baseball, you see sometimes that the season starts in Japan a week early than the rest of the season starts. You also have the World Baseball Classic every two years. The WBC is going on its third year and has seen a lot more teams in pool play including a team from Israel, South Africa and Nicaragua.
Baseball has been played in Australia for a very long time. Starting the 2012 season, there were nine players from the country playing in the majors and there has been professional baseball in Australia since 1989. People of the country have been playing baseball, however, since 1869.
With Australia being a relevant market, it would make sense for the MLB to play at least one series there. The only hurdle would be the 10-hour time difference but teams have played in Japan before so it would not be that big of a deal.
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