For a long time now, sports have been a connecting issue across the globe, bringing together people from different races, nationalities, religions, and political affiliations. Baseball, soccer, and cricket are some of the organized sports that were developed in the west and spread to the rest of the world. The spread of westerners playing baseball with wooden baseball bats to other parts of the globe brought about a dynamic spin to the sport and led to the rise of a fascinating interest in the sport. Baseball is played in virtually all parts of the world from the northern hemisphere to the southern hemisphere and in every corner of the globe.
Here are some of the places and countries “Where Baseball is Played Around The World”:
In Asia, baseball is played in almost every country on the continent. From Israel to Japan and the Philippines, baseball is one of the main sports in these countries as well as in other Asian countries. Professional competitions of the sport in Asian countries have been going on for decades now since the 1920s in Japan and 1970s in Israel. There are roughly 80 baseball teams in most Asian countries with Israel having 5 baseball leagues. Other Asian countries in which baseball is played include South Korea, Saudi Arabia & the UAE, and Taiwan. Taiwan is the hub of baseball in Asia with the country recording the highest Little League World Championships after the USA. The sport has become an integral part of the country’s day to day life such that it is depicted in the country’s NT$500 note.
The CEB (European Baseball Federation) is responsible for organizing and overseeing all international baseball competitions in Europe. Italy and Netherlands dominate baseball competitions in Europe with the two countries sharing 25/27 European titles between themselves. The other two titles have been won by Spain and Belgium. Other countries in Europe where the sport is played include Russia, Czech Republic, France, and United Kingdom. In each of these countries, the sport has been played for decades and there are tens of teams and leagues in each of the countries. In Wales and parts of England, there is a variation of the sport referred to as British baseball played in these parts. This variation involves 11 players in each team. However, despite baseball being a popular sport in the UK, there is no professional/career baseball in the UK currently.
The immense popularity of baseball in North America is attributed to the fact that it is one of the origins of the sport. In the US and Mexico, baseball is one of the top three popular sports in these countries. The popularity of the sport in these countries has been a contributing factor to its widespread commercialization to a tune of billions of dollars. The prominence and popularity of baseball in Central American countries is mainly due to the influence of the US in these countries. In Canada, the sport is the second popular sport in the country after ice hockey. Most pro baseball players in present times and in previous are from North America and the US in particular. There are thousands of baseball teams and leagues in the US alone. Other American countries where the sport is played include Cuba, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico.
The history of baseball in Australia dates back to 1869. The Australian Baseball League is the national outfit of baseball in Australia. This league attracts competitive teams from across Australia.
In New Zealand, baseball is a favorite sport for many people with the New-Zealand Baseball Association being in-charge of the national baseball leagues and competitions in the country. There are several New Zealanders playing professional baseball in the MLB. The national baseball team of New Zealand takes part in BCO (Baseball Confederation of Oceania) events. In addition to this, a senior team is sent by the country every year to Australia to take part and compete in the APC (Australian Provincial Championship).
Despite baseball not being as popular in South America like it is in North America, it is widely played all over South America. In Brazil, baseball activities and competitions are overseen by a national governing body CBBS founded in 1990. There are also minor leagues and competitions in each of the states across Brazil. In Venezuela, there are several baseball teams which participate in the country’s national league. The Venezuelan national team also competes in regional competitions in South America and has won the Caribbean Series two times.
Africa is probably the continent in which baseball is less popular and less played as compared to any other continent. Baseball is mostly played in the Southern African region with South Africa being the only African team that has ever participated in an international baseball competition/league.
Baseball is definitely an international outfit played in every corner of the globe. The future of the sport looks very bright as more people become interested in the sports day by day. There are also expectations that the sport will be fully commercialized in the coming years thereby making it a key career sport for most professional sports people.