A 2020 game between Leñadores de Las Tunas and Cocodrilos de Matanzas of the Cuban National Series

Winter league baseball is baseball contested in sports leagues during what is generally considered the baseball off-season.


Annually, the highest level of professional baseball competition, Major League Baseball (MLB), begins with spring training and runs through completion of the World Series in the fall. Winter league baseball takes place in the months between the completion of the World Series and the start of the next season's spring training. As this spans winter in the Northern Hemisphere, winter baseball leagues are located in warm-weather areas such as Central America and the Caribbean, or, less commonly, in the Southern Hemisphere such as in Australia. In Australia, Baseball Victoria holds its own winter league between April and September.

Winter baseball provides an opportunity for prospects to build their skills or demonstrate their capabilities,[1][2] or for established players to refine their skills or stay in shape.[3][4] Many notable major-league players have played winter league baseball—during the 1954–55 winter season, the outfield of the Santurce Crabbers in Puerto Rico featured both Willie Mays and Roberto Clemente.[5][6]


Notable professional baseball leagues operating as winter leagues include:[7]


Champions of leagues based in and around the Caribbean meet annually in the Caribbean Series, normally contested in February.



See also


  1. ^ Penney, Sean (January 25, 2021). "Red Sox: Jarren Duran's time is approaching after Winter League MVP performance". Retrieved November 27, 2022.
  2. ^ Dewitt, Weston (February 15, 2019). "Top prospect Tatis Jr. knows MLB debut is getting closer". Arizona Daily Star. Tucson, Arizona. AP. p. B2. Retrieved November 27, 2022 – via newspapers.com.
  3. ^ Talley, Rick (February 6, 1979). "Winter baseball under the weather". Chicago Tribune. p. 4-1. Retrieved November 27, 2022 – via newspapers.com.
  4. ^ Kozloski, Hank (July 27, 1976). "Carty, Buskey key 9-4 win". The Times-Reporter. New Philadelphia, Ohio. p. 13. Retrieved November 27, 2022 – via newspapers.com.
  5. ^ Cleveland, Rick (July 6, 1995). "Winter ball proving ground for best". The Clarion-Ledger. Jackson, Mississippi. p. 1C. Retrieved November 27, 2022 – via newspapers.com.
  6. ^ Hernon, Jack (December 28, 1954). "Roamin' Around (column)". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. 13. Retrieved November 27, 2022 – via newspapers.com.
  7. ^ Secatore, Dan (November 11, 2022). "The Complete Guide To Winter League Baseball". overthemonster.com. Retrieved November 27, 2022.

Further reading