The Caribbean Series

The Dominican Republic has won 16 times the Caribbean Series 


In 1969 the Dominican Professional Baseball League was the protagonist of the resurgence of the Caribbean Confederation, an entity also composed of the circuits of Venezuela, Puerto Rico and Mexico. In this scenario, Dominican baseball has maintained a wide dominance since its inception. During his first experience in 1970 and with the participation of only three countries, the Creole performance was a failure. A series of situations led to the poor performance of the national team, which could only get one victory and was defeated seven times. The following year, with Licey representing the nation for the second year, the situation was reversed and the Dominicans obtained their first title with six wins without defeats. Manuel Mota managed and defended the central forest so brilliantly that he was selected Most Valuable Player of the event. Veteran Chichí Olivo had a great performance as a reliever. After that triumph, the event was played in Santo Domingo in 1972 and the Eagles lost their first three games, but reacted by winning the last three, to finish 3-3. The Lions of Ponce, from Puerto Rico, won the crown on that occasion. In the successive years the venue of the contest was rotated. He went to Venezuela in 1973 and in 1974 for the first time to Mexico. In Bolívar's homeland the Dominicans achieved their second crown. When they won again in a classic held in the Dominican Republic, in 1980, the balance showed a favorable balance of five titles for Quisqueya, all with the Tigres del Licey as representatives, three for Puerto Rico, two for Venezuela and one for Mexico. That surprised the second time that this nation hosted it, in 1976.

In 1981, due to a conflict with the players union, the Caribbean Series could not be assembled and from 1982 these events returned, when that year was held in Mexico. During the eighties, the crowns were shared, but Venezuela was the country that achieved a greater number with three. The Dominicans did not get another one until 1985 and they repeated in 1988, again in Santo Domingo and with the Escogido as their representative. The other three titles were two for Puerto Rico and one for Mexico, his second. The decade of the nineties began with the Caribbean Series under a serious economic crisis that led its leaders to sell the event to a company that organized it in the city of Miami for the years of 1990 and 1991. On both occasions, with Escogido and Licey, the Dominicans were crowned champions. That decade was the one that consolidated the country as the holder of the strongest baseball in the area, winning in 1994, 1997, 1998 and 1999, to add a total of six in that period. The Cibaeñas Eagles, who had participated in nine events without being able to achieve victory, got that thorn in 1997 and repeated in 1998. The 21st century began with a triumph of Puerto Rico in Santo Domingo, but in 2001, 2002, 2004 and 2007, Águilas tres and Licey una (2004), added titles to the country to complete 16, followed by Puerto Rico, which accumulates ten, Venezuela six and Mexico five.

Taken from the book See you on the play! Baseball and Culture in the Dominican Republic of the essayist Tony Piña.