After a Taiwanese promoter and MLB officials couldn’t work out a deal for a season-opening series overseas, it looks like all Major League Baseball games will be played in the United States and Canada in 2015.
Fox Sports is reporting the news. In the last several years MLB has worked with foreign promoters for a season-opening season overseas, last year in Australia and the year before in Japan. While these series help promote MLB the brand, they don’t necessarily do a lot for the teams or fans. Last year, the Arizona Diamondbacks and Los Angeles Dodgers cut spring training short by two weeks in order to fly to Australia for the season-opening series. From Fox:
Taiwan gradually has become more prominent as a baseball country. Three Taiwanese players (all pitchers) appeared in the major leagues this year: Baltimore’s Wei-Yin Chen, Cleveland’s C.C. Lee, and Milwaukee’s Wei-Chung Wang. Tuesday in Kansas City, Chen will become the first Taiwanese-born pitcher to start a League Championship Series game.
Taiwan also has been announced as the host nation for the new Premier 12 international baseball tournament, to be held in November 2015.
MLB is leaving open the possibility of playing spring training games overseas in 2015, sources said.
This is why we’re seeing so little movement on the spring-training schedule front; so far only the Baltimore Orioles and Chicago Cubs have released schedules, with Disney releasing an Atlanta Braves schedule for Champion Stadium games. (Yes, we have all the ticket info, schedules and the like at our sister site, Spring Training Online.) As you can tell, we’re not huge fans of disrupting the natural rhythm of the season so MLB can promote itself: in this Internet age, it’s not as though the Dodgers and Diamondbacks can’t reach out to foreign fans, and baseball is doing quite well on its own in Taiwan without a season-opening MLB series.