2023 World Baseball Classic

The 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) was an international professional baseball tournament and the fifth iteration of the World Baseball Classic. It began on March 8, 2023, and ran until March 21.

2023 World Baseball Classic
Tournament details
CountriesJapan
Taiwan
United States
DatesMarch 8–21, 2023[1]
Teams20 (from 4 confederations)
Final positions
Champions Japan (3rd title)
Runner-up United States
Third place Mexico
Fourth place Cuba
Tournament statistics
Games played47
Attendance1,165,857 (24,805 per game)
MVPJapan Shohei Ohtani
← 2017
2026 →

It was originally scheduled to take place in 2021, four years after the previous event, but was canceled in May 2020, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.[2] It was later announced that qualifications for the Classic would start in September 2022, as agreed by World Baseball Classic Inc. (WBCI)[3] The tournament expanded from 16 to 20 national teams, with all teams that participated in the 2017 edition automatically qualifying, plus four additional spots.[4] Unlike in 2009, 2013 and 2017, the U.S. lineup attracted some distinguished players and attracted significant attention for the tournament.[5]

Japan won their record-extending third title after defeating defending champions United States 3–2 in the championship game, becoming the second team since the Dominican Republic in the 2013 World Baseball Classic to win the WBC with an undefeated record. Shohei Ohtani was named the World Baseball Classic Most Valuable Player.[6]

Teams edit

Qualification edit

 
Qualification status:
  Qualified for the 2023 World Baseball Classic
  Participated in the qualifier but failed to qualify

In January 2020, the WBC announced that the 16 national teams which participated at the 2017 World Baseball Classic would automatically qualify for the 2023 tournament.[7]

A qualifying tournament was scheduled for March 2020 in Tucson, Arizona, United States, to determine the last four teams.[7] Twelve teams were split into two pools, and the top two teams in each pool would qualify.[4] On March 12, 2020, Major League Baseball announced that the qualifying tournaments were being postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[8] The qualification tournament ended up postponing to September 16–21, 2022, for the Africa/Europe qualifiers and September 30 – October 5, 2022, for the Americas/Asia/Oceania qualifiers.[9]

The Czech Republic, Great Britain, and Nicaragua made their first appearance in the World Baseball Classic, while Panama returned after having missed out on two World Baseball Classic appearances. This was the third consecutive time that South Africa, the only African team, did not qualify for the World Baseball Classic, and the second consecutive time that both Brazil and Spain did not qualify. With Panama qualified for the World Baseball Classic for the first time since 2009, South Africa now has the longest active WBC appearance drought at 14 years, having not qualified since 2009.

Qualified teams
Region Team Qualification
method
Prev.
apps
Previous best result WBSC World
Rankings[10]
Americas   Canada Automatically qualified 4 Pool stage (2006, 2009, 2013, 2017) 14
  Colombia Automatically qualified 1 Pool stage (2017) 11
  Cuba Automatically qualified 4 Runners-up (2006) 8
  Dominican Republic Automatically qualified 4 Champions (2013) 9
  Mexico Automatically qualified 4 Quarterfinals (2006, 2009) 5
  Puerto Rico Automatically qualified 4 Runners-up (2013, 2017) 13
  United States Automatically qualified as hosts 4 Champions (2017) 3
  Venezuela Automatically qualified 4 Third place (2009) 6
  Panama Qualifier 2 Winners 2 Pool stage (2006, 2009) 12
  Nicaragua Qualifier 2 Runners-up 0 None (debut) 17
Asia   China Automatically qualified 4 Pool stage (2006, 2009, 2013, 2017) 30
  Chinese Taipei Automatically qualified as hosts 4 Quarterfinals (2013) 2
  Japan Automatically qualified as hosts 4 Champions (2006, 2009) 1
  South Korea Automatically qualified 4 Runners-up (2009) 4
Europe   Israel Automatically qualified 1 Quarterfinals (2017) 20
  Italy Automatically qualified 4 Quarterfinals (2013) 16
  Netherlands Automatically qualified 4 Fourth place (2013, 2017) 7
  Great Britain Qualifier 1 Winners 0 None (debut) 22
  Czech Republic Qualifier 1 Runners-up 0 None (debut) 15
Oceania   Australia Automatically qualified 4 Pool stage (2006, 2009, 2013, 2017) 10

Draw edit

The pool draw was announced by World Baseball Classic Inc. (WBCI) on July 7, 2022.[11] Organizers prioritized placement in separate pools of the four nations which reached the semifinals of the 2017 WBC (Japan, the Netherlands, Puerto Rico, and the United States) and the three hosts (Japan, the United States, and Taiwan). Remaining pool assignments were made based on WBSC World Rankings, competitive balance, and commercial and geographic interest.[12]

Note: Numbers in parentheses indicate positions in the WBSC World Rankings at the time of the draw.[13]

Pot 1 Pot 2 Pot 3 Pot 4 Pot 5
  Japan (1) (H)
  Chinese Taipei (2) (H)
  United States (5) (H)
  Puerto Rico (16)
  Netherlands (8)
  South Korea (3)
  Mexico (4)
  Dominican Republic (6)
  Venezuela (7)
  Cuba (9)
  Australia (10)
  Colombia (11)
  Canada (12)
  Italy (17)
  Israel (20)
  China (21)
  Panama (13)[A]
  Czech Republic (14)[B]
  Nicaragua (15)[C]
  Great Britain (24)[D]

Venues edit

Four stadiums were used during the main tournament.[14][15]

Pool A Pool B & Quarterfinals Pool C Pool D, Quarterfinals, Semifinals and Championship
  Taichung, Taiwan   Tokyo, Japan   Phoenix, United States   Miami, United States
Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium Tokyo Dome Chase Field LoanDepot Park
Capacity: 20,000 Capacity: 45,600 Capacity: 48,686 Capacity: 36,742
       

Attendance edit

The first round of the tournament drew 1,010,999 fans across all four venues, nearly double the previous record for the WBC.[16] This included 361,976 fans in Tokyo for Pool B and 295,850 fans in Miami for Pool D. Total attendance for the tournament across all rounds was 1,306,414, the highest in WBC history.[17]

Team base camps edit

National squads' base camps[18]
Team City
  Australia Fuchu[19]
  Canada Mesa
  China Hioki[20]
  Chinese Taipei Taichung
  Colombia Mesa
  Cuba Okinawa,[21] Taipei[22][21]
  Czech Republic Miyazaki
  Dominican Republic Fort Myers
  Great Britain Phoenix
  Israel Jupiter
Team City
  Italy Taichung
  Japan Miyazaki[23]
  Mexico Scottsdale
  Netherlands Taichung
  Nicaragua Vero Beach
  Panama Taichung
  Puerto Rico Fort Myers
  South Korea Tucson[24]
  United States Scottsdale
  Venezuela West Palm Beach

Rosters edit

Participating nations had to submit their final 30-man rosters no later than February 7, 2023. WBC rules required teams to carry at least 14 pitchers and two catchers on their rosters.[25]

Officiating edit

On March 7, 2023, Major League Baseball and the World Baseball Softball Confederation released the list of officials for the tournament.[26]

Umpires edit

^Note Incorrectly listed as Ki Talk Park

Supervisors edit

Prize money edit

The prize money allocation was released by Major League Baseball and the World Baseball Softball Confederation on March 7, 2023. Teams collect each stage they qualify in – the champions can collect a maximum of $3 million if they are a pool winner.[27]

Stage Prize money (US$) No. of Teams Total (US$)
Champions $1,000,000 1 $1,000,000
Finalists $500,000 2 $1,000,000
Semifinalists $500,000 4 $2,000,000
Quarterfinalists $400,000 8 $3,200,000
Pool winners $300,000 4 $1,200,000
Participants $300,000 20 $6,000,000
Total     $14,400,000

Group stage edit

Scheduled locations and dates are as follows:[1][28]

Pool A edit

Pool A was contested in Taichung during March 8–12, 2023.

Pos Team Pld W L RF RA PCT GB Qualification
1   Cuba 4 2 2 25 15 .500[a] Advance to quarterfinals
Qualification for 2026 World Baseball Classic
2   Italy 4 2 2 20 17 .500[a]
3   Netherlands 4 2 2 13 19 .500[a] Qualification for 2026 World Baseball Classic
4   Panama 4 2 2 19 21 .500[a]
5   Chinese Taipei (H) 4 2 2 26 31 .500[a]
Source: MLB
Rules for classification: Tiebreakers
(H) Hosts
Notes:
  1. ^ a b c d e Runs allowed per defensive out recorded: Cuba .139, Italy .157, Netherlands .186, Panama .200, Chinese Taipei .295[30]
Date Local time Road team Score Home team Inn. Venue Game duration Attendance Boxscore
Mar 8, 2023 12:00 NST Cuba   2–4   Netherlands   Taichung Stadium 3:07 6,501 Boxscore
Mar 8, 2023 19:00 NST Panama   12–5   Chinese Taipei   Taichung Stadium 4:02 15,540 Boxscore
Mar 9, 2023 12:00 NST Panama   1–3   Netherlands   Taichung Stadium 2:45 6,048 Boxscore
Mar 9, 2023 19:00 NST Italy   6–3   Cuba 10 Taichung Stadium 3:43 6,217 Boxscore
Mar 10, 2023 12:30 NST Cuba   13–4   Panama   Taichung Stadium 4:09 7,023 Boxscore
Mar 10, 2023 19:00 NST Italy   7–11   Chinese Taipei   Taichung Stadium 3:58 18,799 Boxscore
Mar 11, 2023 12:00 NST Panama   2–0   Italy   Taichung Stadium 2:57 7,732 Boxscore
Mar 11, 2023 19:00 NST Netherlands   5–9   Chinese Taipei   Taichung Stadium 3:34 18,826 Boxscore
Mar 12, 2023 12:00 NST Chinese Taipei   1–7   Cuba   Taichung Stadium 3:21 18,852 Boxscore
Mar 12, 2023 19:00 NST Netherlands   1–7   Italy   Taichung Stadium 3:00 4,985 Boxscore

Pool B edit

Pool B was contested in Tokyo during March 9–13, 2023.

Pos Team Pld W L RF RA PCT GB Qualification
1   Japan (H) 4 4 0 38 8 1.000 Advance to quarterfinals
Qualification for 2026 World Baseball Classic
2   Australia 4 3 1 29 19 .750 1
3   South Korea 4 2 2 40 26 .500 2 Qualification for 2026 World Baseball Classic
4   Czech Republic 4 1 3 16 30 .250 3
5   China 4 0 4 10 50 .000 4
Source: MLB
Rules for classification: Tiebreakers
(H) Hosts
Date Local time Road team Score Home team Inn. Venue Game duration Attendance Boxscore
Mar 9, 2023 12:00 JST Australia   8–7   South Korea   Tokyo Dome 3:46 15,540 Boxscore
Mar 9, 2023 19:00 JST China   1–8   Japan   Tokyo Dome 3:41 41,616 Boxscore
Mar 10, 2023 12:00 JST Czech Republic   8–5   China   Tokyo Dome 3:54 15,625 Boxscore
Mar 10, 2023 19:00 JST South Korea   4–13   Japan   Tokyo Dome 4:04 41,629 Boxscore
Mar 11, 2023 12:00 JST China   2–12   Australia 7 Tokyo Dome 2:52 15,708 Boxscore
Mar 11, 2023 19:00 JST Czech Republic   2–10   Japan   Tokyo Dome 3:26 41,637 Boxscore
Mar 12, 2023 12:00 JST Czech Republic   3–7   South Korea   Tokyo Dome 2:55 16,129 Boxscore
Mar 12, 2023 19:00 JST Japan   7–1   Australia   Tokyo Dome 3:18 41,664 Boxscore
Mar 13, 2023 12:00 JST Australia   8–3   Czech Republic   Tokyo Dome 3:04 16,641 Boxscore
Mar 13, 2023 19:00 JST South Korea   22–2   China 5 Tokyo Dome 2:37 14,442 Boxscore

Pool C edit

Pool C was contested in Phoenix during March 11–15, 2023.

Pos Team Pld W L RF RA PCT GB Qualification
1   Mexico 4 3 1 27 14 .750[a] Advance to quarterfinals
Qualification for 2026 World Baseball Classic
2   United States (H) 4 3 1 26 16 .750[a]
3   Canada 4 2 2 27 30 .500 1 Qualification for 2026 World Baseball Classic
4   Great Britain 4 1 3 18 31 .250[b] 2
5   Colombia 4 1 3 12 19 .250[b] 2
Source: MLB
Rules for classification: Tiebreakers
(H) Hosts
Notes:
  1. ^ a b Mexico defeated USA, 11–5
  2. ^ a b Great Britain defeated Colombia, 7–5
Date Local time Road team Score Home team Inn. Venue Game duration Attendance Boxscore
Mar 11, 2023 12:30 MST Colombia   5–4   Mexico 10 Chase Field 3:24 28,497 Boxscore
Mar 11, 2023 19:00 MST Great Britain   2–6   United States   Chase Field 2:54 39,650 Boxscore
Mar 12, 2023 12:00 MST Great Britain   8–18   Canada 7 Chase Field 3:38 11,555 Boxscore
Mar 12, 2023 19:00 MST Mexico   11–5   United States   Chase Field 3:41 47,534 Boxscore
Mar 13, 2023 12:00 MST Colombia   5–7   Great Britain   Chase Field 3:50 10,416 Boxscore
Mar 13, 2023 19:00 MST Canada   1–12   United States 7 Chase Field 2:20 29,621 Boxscore
Mar 14, 2023 12:00 MST Canada   5–0   Colombia   Chase Field 2:48 10,571 Boxscore
Mar 14, 2023 19:00 MST Great Britain   1–2   Mexico   Chase Field 3:05 17,705 Boxscore
Mar 15, 2023 12:00 MST Mexico   10–3   Canada   Chase Field 3:31 17,245 Boxscore
Mar 15, 2023 19:00 MST United States   3–2   Colombia   Chase Field 3:02 29,856 Boxscore

Pool D edit

Pool D was contested in Miami during March 11–15, 2023.

Pos Team Pld W L RF RA PCT GB Qualification
1   Venezuela 4 4 0 23 9 1.000 Advance to quarterfinals
Qualification for 2026 World Baseball Classic
2   Puerto Rico 4 3 1 30 12 .750 1
3   Dominican Republic 4 2 2 19 11 .500 2 Qualification for 2026 World Baseball Classic
4   Israel 4 1 3 4 26 .250 3
5   Nicaragua 4 0 4 4 22 .000 4
Source: MLB
Rules for classification: Tiebreakers
Date Local time Road team Score Home team Inn. Venue Game duration Attendance Boxscore
Mar 11, 2023 12:00 EST Nicaragua   1–9   Puerto Rico   LoanDepot Park 2:44 35,399 Boxscore
Mar 11, 2023 19:00 EST Dominican Republic   1–5   Venezuela   LoanDepot Park 3:19 35,890 Boxscore
Mar 12, 2023 12:00 EDT Nicaragua   1–3   Israel   LoanDepot Park 2:50 19,955 Boxscore
Mar 12, 2023 19:00 EDT Venezuela   9–6   Puerto Rico   LoanDepot Park 3:36 35,615 Boxscore
Mar 13, 2023 12:00 EDT Dominican Republic   6–1   Nicaragua   LoanDepot Park 3:09 31,696 Boxscore
Mar 13, 2023 19:00 EDT Israel   0–10   Puerto Rico 8 LoanDepot Park 2:30 27,813 Boxscore
Mar 14, 2023 12:00 EDT Nicaragua   1–4   Venezuela   LoanDepot Park 2:53 21,873 Boxscore
Mar 14, 2023 19:00 EDT Israel   0–10   Dominican Republic 7 LoanDepot Park 2:44 33,307 Boxscore
Mar 15, 2023 12:00 EDT Venezuela   5–1   Israel   LoanDepot Park 2:47 18,277 Boxscore
Mar 15, 2023 19:00 EDT Puerto Rico   5–2   Dominican Republic   LoanDepot Park 3:13 36,025 Boxscore

Knockout stage edit

The top two teams from each pool advanced to the single elimination bracket. These games were contested from March 15–21, 2023. Tokyo hosted two of the quarterfinals, while the other two quarterfinals, the semifinals, and the championship game took place in Miami.[1][28]

Bracket edit

 
QuarterfinalsSemifinalsChampionship
 
          
 
March 15 – Tokyo
 
 
  Australia3
 
March 19 – Miami
 
  Cuba4
 
  Cuba2
 
March 18 – Miami
 
  United States14
 
  United States9
 
March 21 – Miami
 
  Venezuela7
 
  United States2
 
March 17 – Miami
 
  Japan3
 
  Puerto Rico4
 
March 20 – Miami
 
  Mexico5
 
  Mexico5
 
March 16 – Tokyo
 
  Japan6
 
  Italy3
 
 
  Japan9
 

Quarterfinals edit

Date Local time Road team Score Home team Inn. Venue Game duration Attendance Boxscore
Mar 15, 2023 19:00 JST Australia   3–4   Cuba   Tokyo Dome 3:24 35,061 Boxscore
Mar 16, 2023 19:00 JST Italy   3–9   Japan   Tokyo Dome 3:24 41,723 Boxscore
Mar 17, 2023 19:00 EDT Puerto Rico   4–5   Mexico   LoanDepot Park 3:17 35,817 Boxscore
Mar 18, 2023 19:00 EDT United States   9–7   Venezuela   LoanDepot Park 3:46 35,792 Boxscore

Semifinals edit

Date Local time Road team Score Home team Inn. Venue Game duration Attendance Boxscore
Mar 19, 2023 19:00 EDT Cuba   2–14   United States   LoanDepot Park 3:28 35,779 Boxscore
Mar 20, 2023 19:00 EDT Mexico   5–6   Japan   LoanDepot Park 3:36 35,933 Boxscore

Final edit

March 21, 2023 19:00 EDT (UTC−4) at LoanDepot Park in Miami, United States
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
  United States 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 9 0
  Japan 0 2 0 1 0 0 0 0 X 3 5 0
WP: Shōta Imanaga (1–0)   LP: Merrill Kelly (0–1)   Sv: Shohei Ohtani (1)
Home runs:
USA: Trea Turner (5), Kyle Schwarber (2)
JPN: Munetaka Murakami (1), Kazuma Okamoto (2)
Attendance: 36,098
Umpires: HP – Lance Barksdale, 1B – John Tumpane, 2B – Edward Pinales, 3B – Ramiro Alfaro, LF – Jong Chui Park, RF – Quinn Wolcott
Boxscore

Awards edit

Most Valuable Players edit

Group stage edit

Knockout stage edit

2023 All-World Baseball Classic team edit

Players named to the All-WBC Team (from left to right);
Second baseman – Javier Báez of Puerto Rico
Shortstop – Trea Turner of the United States
Outfielder – Mike Trout of the United States
Outfielder – Masataka Yoshida of Japan
Position Player
C   Salvador Pérez
1B   Yu Chang
2B   Javier Báez
3B   Yoán Moncada
SS   Trea Turner
OF   Randy Arozarena
  Mike Trout
  Masataka Yoshida
DH   Shohei Ohtani
P   Shohei Ohtani
  Miguel Romero
  Patrick Sandoval

Source: [31]

Statistical leaders edit

Notes edit

Broadcasting edit

Television ratings edit

The Japan 13-4 South Korea group game drew a household viewership of 44.4% in Japan[32][33][34] and 11.7% in South Korea.[35][36] In other words, there is an averaged 29.868 million Japanese viewers[37][38] (28.9% individual viewership[32][33][34]) and 2.709 million Korean viewers of the broadcast;[39] among which, 62.343 million Japanese watched at least one minute of the game.[37][38] The Korean rating in that game is the second most watched WBC game in Korea, after the 2009 Japan-South Korea final.[39]

The Japan v. Italy game broke Japanese viewership record in WBC history. It drew an average 48.0% household viewership in Japan, i.e. averaged 38.164 million viewers.[37][38]

In the United States, the World Baseball Classic was carried by Fox Sports for the first time, with games split between six Fox networks. The championship game drew 5.2 million average viewers in the US,[40] peaking at 6.5 million viewers in the final 15 minutes,[41] a new record for a WBC game. In Puerto Rico, the Pool D game between Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic was viewed by 62% of households.[40]

Broadcasting rights edit

Territory Rights holder(s) Ref.
Africa ESPN [42]
Brazil BandSports [42]
Canada [42]
Central America Tigo Sports [42]
Caribbean SportsMax [42]
China [42]
Colombia Win Sports [42]
Cuba [42]
Czech Republic ČT [42]
Dominican Republic
[42]
France beIN Sports [42]
German-speaking countries More Than Sports TV [42]
Hungary Sport TV [42]
Israel Sport 5 [42]
Italy Sky Italia [42]
Japan [42][43]
Mexico Imagen [42]
Netherlands ESPN [42]
Nordic countries Viaplay [42]
Oceania ESPN [42]
Panama TVN [42]
Puerto Rico WAPA Deportes [42]
South America DirecTV [42]
Southeast Asia & Hong Kong SPOTV [42]
South Korea
[42]
Taiwan [42][44][45]
Turkey Saran Media [42]
United Kingdom & Ireland BT Sport [42]
United States [42][46]
Venezuela
[42]

Notes edit

  1. ^ Americas/Asia/Oceania qualifier winners, team not determined at time of draw
  2. ^ Africa/Europe qualifier runners-up, team not determined at time of draw
  3. ^ Americas/Asia/Oceania qualifier runners-up, team not determined at time of draw.
  4. ^ Africa/Europe qualifier winners, team not determined at time of draw.

References edit

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