A World League of Champion Clubs is the latest project taken on by The World Baseball and Softball Confederation and the plan is to have the inaugural tournament October 28 to September 1st of this year. The new tournament would have a format similar to that of the European soccer Champions League.
“WBSC is working so that baseball goes global and that it is not only at the level of national teams. We want to do something similar to what happens in soccer,” said the president of the international federation, the Italian Riccardo Fraccari. Fraccari made this announcement earlier this year during four-day trip to Havana, Cuba.
Details about the format of the competition and whether it could attract clubs from other professional leagues such as Japan, South Korea and Chinese Taipei are still unknown. The Liga Mexicana de Béisbol, American Association and Liga Mayor de Béisbol champions also invited to be on the list of invitees for the future event.
Puello Herrera a ESPN hace minutos: “Colombia y Panamá están muy cerca de ser agregadas a la Serie del Caribe de Miami. Se trabajan últimos detalles”.
— Enrique Rojas/ESPN (@Enrique_Rojas1) May 19, 2023
Cuba who will not be invited to this edition of the Caribbean World Series, mostly because of their own doing, has made it know that it would be very interested in participating in the tournament and will be invited. Although no date has been set yet for the tournament, Cuba has already announced that they would send their Serie Nacional champion to the tournament.
The best-known international baseball tournament at the club level in the Americas is the traditional Caribbean Series, founded seven decades ago, run by the Caribbean Professional Baseball Confederation. This tournament looks to either augment or offset this tournament.
Let it be know that the CPBC never expelled Cuba, one of the founding members of the tournament, it was Cuban dictator Fidel Castro who withdrew the country from the tournament when he outlawed professional sports on the island in 1961.
Cuba who reentered the tournament as an invitee in 2014 also refused to participate in the in 2020 edition of the SDC in San Juan, Puerto Rico because it refused to pick up their visas for the tournament in the American embassy in the Dominican Republic, citing political reason for its refusal. The Agricultores who are the defending Cuban Winter League (Liga Élite) champions participated in the tournament last year in Caracas going an underwhelming 1-7.
What will the future hold for Cuba in these international tournaments? None one know. One thing that is certain is that the country’s current tournament structure needs to be revitalized in order to keep up with the rest of the baseball and continue to participate in high level tournaments, such as the Serie del Caribe.