The Dominican Republic is world famous for its idyllic beaches, its dancing, its beautiful natural surroundings and its happy and welcoming people. However not many people know that in the Dominican Republic the undisputed king of sports is not soccer, as in many Central and South American countries, but baseball.
It is thought that the sport arrived in the Dominican Republic in 1891 thanks to sailors on the Cuban boat María Herrera, who played it on the beaches at Pita and shared the secrets of the game with the locals, leaving behind their bats and balls when they left.
Immediately, baseballs clubs and teams mushroomed on the island and the Dominicans have not stopped playing it since. Today the country has high quality baseball, despite not performing particularly well in recent international competitions. It has a reputable professional championship and is producing more and more strong players.
This country, which began its love affair with the game in the 19th century, was world champion in 1948 and won silver in 1942, 1950 and 1952, and bronze in 1943, 1953 and 1969. It came third in the 1981 Intercontinental Cup, second in the 1979 Pan American Games, while winning at the regional level in 1962 and 1982, coming second in 1946, 1970 and 1974, and third in 1954 and 1990.
The country has hosted a total of six Caribbean Professional Series, as well as the 1969 World Cup and the Central American and Caribbean Games in 1974 and 1986.
While it is not in the world elite, according to the results of the official tournaments organized by the International Baseball Federation, where they have to do without their stars who play in the US, the quality of Dominican baseball has increased progressively to become one of the strongest overall in the world.
If you visit the Dominican Republic, do not miss the opportunity to go to a game – the passion on the field is contagious!
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