MIAMI, Fla. – Marlins Park in Miami’s Little Havana won the bid to host all three rounds of the 2021 World Baseball Classic, including the Championship Round. It will be a record breaking fourth time Miami has hosted the WBC.
New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter, the Miami Marlins’ chief executive officer, made the announcement Tuesday morning at the baseball stadium.
“I was fortunate to play in two baseball classics and represent the United States and this tournament is a shining example of the many different nations that make up the game and the incredible diversity of the nation’s pastime,” said Jeter.
Jeter announced that the WBC isn’t only returning to Miami next year, but the organization is taking an unprecedented step to host all three rounds of the tournament.
Marlins Park, which has hosted games in each of the last two WBC tournaments, will become the first venue in event history to host games in all three rounds of a World Baseball Classic in the same year. Pool D of the first round will run from March 14 to 18, 2021. The North American quarterfinals, including the teams advancing from Pool C and D, will take place on March 19 to 20, while the semi-finals and finals will be played from March 21 to 23.
“Being selected to host all three rounds, including the finals, reaffirms Miami’s place as a global destination for all the biggest events, and Marlins Park is the ideal world-class entertainment venue to play host,” said Jeter. “The excitement and passion on display in Marlins Park during the last World Baseball Classic showed what we already knew to be true about this market – that South Florida has an undying love for their heritage and the game of baseball. We are proud to welcome fans from across the globe to Marlins Park for this event, and we are excited to show off all the new enhancements we have made to the ballpark since the tournament was last played here.”
Jeter sat next to Miami Mayor Francis X. Suarez, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Giménez and Jim Small, the WBC president, during the announcement.
In 2017, Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria agreed to sell his team to a group led by Derek Jeter and New York businessman Bruce Sherman for $1.2 billion. Jeter said Tuesday that his ownership group has made “a significant investment" in the facility with an eye on improving the fan experience.”
“This is great for the community and a big economic driver for our local businesses," Jeter said, adding that the stadium has been updated since the 2017 WBC.
Suarez called it “an incredible occasion. This along with other events really cements Miami’s position as a global leader in sports event across not only the country but the world. This event will be seen around the world and it will have a direct economic impact on hotels and restaurants, but also the entire world showcasing Miami.
For 2021, the field of teams will expand to 20 for the first time in WBC history. The 16 teams that participated in the 2017 WBC, which includes Australia, Canada, China, Chinese Taipei, Colombia, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Israel, Italy, Japan, The Kingdom of the Netherlands, Korea, Mexico, Puerto Rico, United States, and Venezuela, will be invited to return for the 2021 iteration and will be joined by four teams advancing from the 2020 Qualifiers, which will determined in Tucson, Arizona.