Puerto Rico’s 2018-2019 Winter Baseball League
Dates for the 2018-2019 baseball season- starts November15, 2018! There will be 36 games played during the regular season with 4 teams. The stadium in Carolina will not be ready this year, but will reopen for the ’19-’20 season. For 2018-2019 season they will play “home games” at Hiram Bithorn stadium and will supply free transportation from Carolina for the fans!.
Though you may not be able to buy "peanuts and cracker jack", a baseball game in Puerto Rico is an economical and fun evening out. Every winter (from November through January), baseball heats up on the island. Not only do we have local players on the teams, but some of the US league players come down to keep in shape and play in their off-season.
So, if you are having baseball withdrawal, catch a game while you’re here — I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
Local League & Teams
For over 70 years, Puerto Rico has had its own baseball league. A number of the local athletes that have played in our league have gone onto bigger things, like the Major and Minor leagues in the States, and other divisions and leagues around the world.
The main professional baseball league in Puerto Rico is the Liga Beisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente (Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League) — @LBPRC on Twitter and LBPRC on Facebook. Previously, the league was called Puerto Rico Baseball League. Before that, the league was called La Liga de Béisbol Profesional de Puerto Rico (Professional Baseball League of Puerto Rico). If you search the internet for info on this league, you’re likely to find it under any/all of those names.
The winners of this league go on to participate in the Caribbean World Series.
2018-2019 Schedule, Teams and Venues
The 2018-2019 baseball season starts on November 15th, 2018. This season, there will be 4 teams (but 5 franchises) from around the island playing in the league.
The teams in the league this year are:
- Los Criollos de Caguas (on Twitter @CriollosCaguas, on Facebook)
- Los Gigantes de Carolina (on Twitter @GigantesPRBL, on Facebook)
- Cangrejeros de Santurce (on Twitter @CangrejerosPR, on Facebook)
- Indios de Mayaguez, (on Twitter @MayaguezIndios, on Facebook)
I believe for 2019 the Tiburones de Aguadilla will merge with the Mayaguez Indios again.
There will be 36 games played throughout the season. Last season game is Dec 30th. Then there will be 18 Round Robin games from Jan 2-20th and then the Series Finals will between the 2 winning teams will be from Jan 22-29, 2019. Then the winning team will go on to Serie del Caribe (Caribbean Series), in February.
The Roberto Clemente Baseball League game schedule and will be available on the Major League Baseball web site. The scoreboards for the Roberto Clemente Baseball League games are also available on the MLB web site. Games will be played on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. A rare game on Monday or Tuesdays, usually for rain dates. Note- on the schedule, the first team listed is the visitor and the second team listed is the home team (at their home stadium). For example, the first game on November 15th is San-Cag. This means Santurce will be playing Caguas in Caguas’ home stadium in Gurabo.
This year, due to hurricane damage, they will only be using stadiums that are repaired for Home games.
The game start times:
- Games start at 7:10 pm Tues, Thursdays and Fridays. Wednesdays, games start 1:10pm. Saturdays 6:10pm (except Santurce home games at 3:10pm) and Sundays will be at 3:10pm unless it is a double games, then the first game at 1;10pm and second will start about 20 mins after the end of the first games . Check schedule to exact times as they are variable.
Take Me Out to a Ball Game
I am not a huge baseball fan, but I can follow along. We went to a game at the Estadio Roberto Clemente Walker in Carolina a couple seasons ago.
My first observation is that not all that many people go to the games. I really don’t understand why not! Since there were so few spectators, we got a great parking spot and great seats. My second observation is that it is really a bargain! Parking was only $2.00. Back then, adult tickets range in prices from $4.00 to $10.00. Kids are half-price. And, honestly, I didn’t see anyone checking tickets once you got into the stadium. So I bet (especially on slow nights) you could buy the cheapest tickets and move to any seat in the stands. We paid for the "best" seats (a whole $6.00 each) and sat in the front row along the first base line.
If I had to guess, I’d say there was a maximum of 150 spectators in the whole stadium. I think the stadium can hold about 12,000 people. As you can see in the pictures, it was empty!
One odd thing that I noticed was that, with the exception of a few enthusiastic fans, the crowd was pretty quiet. But this game, which lasted about 3 hours, had its share of exciting moments. The pitchers did a great job. Two batters actually splintered their bats. A number of foul balls went up into the stands. The best moment was when a batter hit the ball out of the park with the bases loaded — a grand slam that cinched the game!
The game was a really family friendly experience. Besides the great ticket price, the players are really friendly.
Kids would hang out by the dugout and occasionally, as the catcher was walking back after an inning, he would throw a ball up to the kids.
As the players came off the field between innings, they would wave or smile to the kids, or even talk/gesture to the spectators cheering them on (or heckling them!).
We had guests staying in our rental home that went to the stadium hoping to catch a game in late October. Since it was before the season started, they ended up sitting in on a practice session. After practice, some of the players spent some time talking with the kids and gave them an autographed baseball. Really nice!
The Roberto Clemente Walker Stadium will not be used 2018/2019 season
The stadium is big, beautiful and well-maintained. It has the typical big-screen scoreboard, so you could see the score and who was pitching and batting.
The snack bar had reasonably priced food and beverages, with some typical Puerto Rican food (like plantain chips and pinchos), some regular ballpark fare (like popcorn, hamburgers and hot dogs). The local Medalla beer was $2/glass, and the beer guy came around every 15 minutes or so. There was even a bar for mixed drinks, with a waitress to bring them to you if you didn’t want to get up and risk missing the action. The bathrooms were plentiful and clean (well last time I went they were “sort-of” clean!).
There were security guards around, but there were no issues that needed them. There was plenty of parking (and close to the stadium entrance since there were so few spectators).
Tickets vary in price. You can buy season tickets and some individual tickets at TicketPlusPR. Or you can buy tickets at the door. Individual games start at about $6.00 and go up for the best seats.
Games start at 7:10 pm Tues, Thursdays and Fridays. Wednesdays, games start 1:10pm. Saturdays 6:10pm (except Santurce home games at 3:10pm) and Sundays will be at 3:10pm unless it is a double games, then the first game at 1;10pm and second will start about 20 mins after the end of the first games . Check schedule to exact times as they are variable. Game times vary by day of week, so make sure to check the schedule for start times.
Bring an umbrella with you. The season is during a wet time of year, so showers come and go. The game we went to continued through a light rain. Many people got up and moved to covered sections of the stands during the showers.
We are in the process of updating the maps we use on our web site. While we're working on that, you can click on the GPS coordinates below to view the location on Google Maps ...
- Evaristo Varo Roldán Stadium: (18.261285, -65.966586)
- Hiram Bithorn Stadium: (18.416925, -66.073120)
- Isidoro 'El Cholo' Garcia Baseball Stadium: (18.193182, -67.155067)
PuertoRicoDayTrips.com assumes no responsibility regarding your safety when participating in the activities described in this article. Please use common sense! If your mother or that little voice in your head tells you that you are about to do something stupid … then don't do it!