2013 Spring Training
All Team and League Schedules Have Been Posted
|2013 Spring Training Standings
| ||W ||L ||T
|Orioles ||19 || 9 || 4
|Braves ||20 ||15 ||
|Tigers ||19 ||14 || 2
|Twins ||17 ||16 ||
|Cardinals ||16 ||15 || 1
|Phillies ||16 ||15 || 1
|Red Sox ||17 ||17 || 1
|Mets ||15 ||15 || 3
|Rays ||15 ||17 || 2
|Astros ||14 ||16 || 3
|Blue Jays ||14 ||17 || 1
|Nationals ||14 ||17 || 2
|Marlins ||13 ||16 || 2
|Pirates ||13 ||18 || 1
|Yankees ||13 ||18 || 1
| ||W ||L ||T
|Royals ||25 || 7 || 2
|Mariners ||21 ||11 ||
|A's ||15 ||12 || 3
|Rockies ||16 ||14 ||
|Giants ||15 ||13 || 4
|Indians ||17 ||16 || 2
|White Sox ||13 ||13 || 3
|D-backs ||16 ||17 || 2
|Padres ||16 ||18 ||
|Cubs ||15 ||17 || 1
|Rangers ||14 ||16 || 2
|Brewers ||12 ||17 || 2
|Reds ||13 ||20 || 2
|Dodgers ||11 ||19 || 3
|Angels || 9 ||18 || 4
|Only includes games played in Arizona & Florida
The 2013 spring training schedule has been set, and an almost evenly split 526 exhibition games will be played in Arizona and Florida. The Cactus League schedule
features 264 games to be played in 12 ballparks. There are 262 games on the Grapefruit League docket
, with 15 ballparks being used to host them. Combined, the two leagues have 65 night games
scheduled. With the World Baseball Classic taking place this March, there are also 20 "friendlies"
between MLB teams and countries training for the WBC. To find links to all schedules, including those for each of the 30 teams, visit the Spring Training Schedules page
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Tigers Allow Fans Early Entrance to Watch BP for $5
In general, the gates at spring training ballparks don't open early enough for fans to see the home team hit, which usually happens between two and three hours before game time. That being the case, the Tigers came up with the idea to offer fans that opportunity...for a fee. For $5, fans can now get into Lakeland's Joker Marchant Stadium an hour or so early to watch the Tigers take their BP from the place where BP homers often land: the grass hill in left field. For fans wanting to partake in the "batting practice experience," the cost is added onto the regular cost of a ticket at the box office, where already bought tickets can be upgraded for the same $5 price. You must have a game ticket to be eligible to get in early and the only part of the ballpark that is open early is the berm and left field line bleacher grandstand. Admission is via the 3rd base gate only and the time for early batting practice admittance can vary slightly. For day games, it's usually 10:00 a.m. but it actually depends on when the Tigers start hitting, which could be later like 10:15 but is always going to be in the 10:00ish range. While many teams will likely copy the Tigers and offer such access in the future, right now they're the only one doing it exactly this way. As for fan interest, about 2,000 showed up to see Tigers BP on February 23. The two games that preceded the opener averaged about 200 early admissions.
Name Change: Digital Domain Park is No More
After only two full spring training seasons as being known as Digital Domain Park, the Mets' Grapefruit League grounds in Port St. Lucie is searching for a new name after Digital Domain Media Group filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on September 11, just four days after the movie effects company closed their animation studio that was a short distance from the stadium they bought the naming rights for on March 23, 2010. It's the second time in three years that a sponsor will default on naming rights for the ballpark, which was called Tradition Field from 2004 until March 2, 2010. For now, the stadium will go by the generic name of Mets Stadium, although most media outlets still refer to it as Digital Domain Park, which Spring Training Connection will continue to do until a new naming partner is found.
Ground is Broken For New Cubs Spring Training Complex
The countdown to the next new spring training stadium has officially begun and the city of Mesa has 19 months to get it done following the July 11th groundbreaking of the complex that the Chicago Cubs will be moving to in 2014. The future site is about three miles west of the Cubs' current Cactus League home, Hohokam Park, and is being constructed, at a cost of $99 million to the city, on land where a golf course had stood for a half-century. The Cubs have trained continuously in Mesa since 1979 and the new ballpark will be the third one used in the city by them since then. The team also hopes to share it with a sublessee -- Arizona State University (although talks between the two have not been going well) -- while Mesa is trying to lure the Oakland A's into the stadium that the Cubs will be abandoning, which hasn't made officials happy in Phoenix, where the A's have trained since 1982. As for the new place, it will hold 15,000 fans and the Cubs have a 30-year agreement with Mesa to play in what will be the largest capacity spring training stadium ever built.
Brewers Decide to Remain in Maryvale
Only one team's spring training lease expired in 2012 and that team decided on April 3 to stay where they are a little while longer, with the emphasis being on little, as the Milwaukee Brewers re-upped with the City of Phoenix to continue using Maryvale Baseball Park through 2014. That deal was contingent on Phoenix making $1.5 million in improvements to the Brewers' offices and clubhouses and contains a series of 1-year options that the team can exercise to stay in their western Phoenix complex through 2022. Milwaukee has trained in Maryvale since 1998 and gets to keep all the revenue from tickets, concessions, souvenirs, advertising and parking. In 2012, the Brewers paid $554,509 in rent and drew an average paid crowd of 5,476 for their 15 Cactus League home games. The franchise has always trained in Arizona and prefers to stay in the state, although given the dismal state of the economy their options to move anywhere were limited. Only Scottsdale was briefly mentioned as a relocation target, but the Brewers quickly shot that rumor down. The team also declined to speak with officials in Fort Myers, FL about City of Palms Park, which the Red Sox vacated after 2011.
Spring Training News
WBC vs. MLB Teams to Take Place 20 Times This Spring
The World Baseball Classic returns in 2013 and there's a special slate of spring training games to help some countries prepare for it. Seventeen ballparks get in on hosting the friendly action, with tickets generally available for half-price for games like Dominican Republic-Yankees and Team USA-White Sox. Match-ups like those only come around in spring training every four years, and our 2013 WBC Exhibitions Schedule lists all 20 that are scheduled for this spring. You can also take a look at the 36 that were played in 2009, when MLB teams went 23-12-1 against 13 national teams, including eventual WBC champion Japan.
Old Al Lang Field Will Again Host Spring Training Baseball in 2013
For the third straight spring training, baseball will be played at historic Al Lang Field in St. Petersburg. Last used for a Grapefruit League game on March 28, 2008, the bayfront grounds where baseball players have trained since 1922 began hosting professional teams each March again after a three-year hiatus in 2011 with the advent of the St. Petersburg International Spring Baseball Series. Featuring exhibition games involving the national teams from Canada and the Netherlands in its first two years, those squads are competing in the World Baseball Classic in 2013 and thus are unavailable, so instead "prospect squads" from the Braves, Orioles and Phillies will be competing in a mini "Spring Training Tournament" from March 10-14. Last year, the foreign squads played 10 games against the Blue Jays, Braves, Phillies, Pirates, Rays and Tigers, although the major league competition that the Canadian and Dutch teams faced were mostly comprised of an organization's minor leaguers. This year's tournament is a mere three-game round robin exclusively between minor leaguers that will be played in what was for a long time the best major league spring training setting. For the 2013 schedule and other pertinent information about what's now known as Progress Energy Park at Al Lang Field, visit the St. Petersburg International Baseball website.
Two Games Scheduled For Tucson
For the third straight March, spring training games have been added to the Cactus League schedule to continue a tradition of playing them in Tucson, where four teams trained from 1947 through 2010. The Diamondbacks-Padres on March 17 and Cubs-Dodgers on March 21 will be the 6th and 7th split-squad match-ups in Tucson since the spring training era presumably ended there when the D-backs and Rockies left the Old Pueblo for the greener pastures of Salt River Fields in 2011. That year two games kept Tucson's spring training streak alive, three more exhibitions extended it in 2012, and the two games set for 2013 will make it the 67th straight year that games have been played in Tucson. Both this spring will be played at Kino Stadium, the former spring training home of the Diamondbacks and White Sox, and start at 1:05 p.m. Meanwhile, Hi Corbett Field, the historic former home of the Indians and Rockies, still gets plenty of use, as the 76-year old ballpark is now home to the University of Arizona baseball team and the Wildcats play 38 games there this year.
Fans Flock to Games Under Floodlights
While nearly 90% of spring training games begin in the afternoon, fans continue to fill up a greater percentage of stadium seats for night games, which may be becoming more popular as a result. In 2009-10, just 91 games were scheduled to start after 6:00 PM. That number increased to 115 for the 2011-12 seasons. In all four of those seasons, the average game attendance in both leagues was easily much higher for the easier to attend night games than day games. For example, in 2012 the Cactus League averaged 8,202 fans for its 27 night games and 7,406 for its 205 day games. The Grapefruit League's numbers were similarly higher: a 7,575 average for 29 night games versus 6,816 for 211 afternoon games. So the bottom line is better at the box office at night with both teams and fans benefiting, as out-of-towners have the opportunity to see two games in one calendar day while local fans can go to the midweek games they usually must miss to work. As for the teams missing out on the nighttime bonanza, just six did not host a night game in 2012: the Angels, Brewers and Cubs in Arizona and the Blue Jays, Cardinals and Phillies in Florida. Those were also the only six teams not to host a night game in 2011.
Spring Training Features
Let's Watch Two
Ernie Banks famously said "Let's play two!" and while there are no doubleheaders during spring training there are plenty of opportunities for fans to watch two games in one day. With 65 games scheduled to be played at night in 2013 fans can enjoy a day/night DH at different ballparks. Check out the list of 2013 Spring Training Night Games to plan your creative double dip.
Tips For Getting Autographs
How do you get autographs in Spring Training? Joe Connor answers that question. Read his article, How to Get Autographs During Spring Training, to learn about the three important factors autograph seekers must be aware of in their quest.
A Guide to Attending Spring Training Practice...and Getting Autographs at Them
Proximity to the pros at a price that can't be beat. That sums up the free to attend practice only portion of spring training, during which time autographs are easy to come by and barriers between players and fans are often remarkably minimal. Spring training in February has an ambiance of fan-friendliness that's unmatched in professional sports. To help you bask in it, Graham Knight has compiled a guide with team-by-team listings of where practices are actually held, when you should be there, and the guidelines for getting autographs at them.
Before the games begin, players have to report to camp. To see when pitchers and catchers report and first practices are held for your team, visit the 2013 Spring Training Reporting Dates page.
The Best Ballpark Atmospheres During Spring Training
In 2011, Joe Connor ranked, from worst to first, the general game day atmosphere found at each Grapefruit and Cactus League ballpark. Not surprisingly, the rabid Red Sox and Cubs fan bases ensured that their teams topped the respective lists.
Things To Do In Arizona and Florida During Spring Training
Fans of all ages have plenty to experience and see in the Grand Canyon and Sunshine States besides watching their favorite team train in their winter home. Joe Connor details a “starting nine” of sports and recreation things to do when you're not at your favorite team’s ballpark.
Planning For Spring Training
What do you need to know before you go? Joe Connor helps you answer that question in his article, 5 Questions to Ask Yourself When Planning Your Spring Training Trip.
To Dine For: Ranking the Ballparks Based on the Food They Offer
In 2009, Peoria and Lakeland topped our list by having the best ballpark concessions fare in their respective leagues. Which other ballparks also did a good job at satisfying appetites? See the rankings and explanations for all 26.
Spring Training History
Spring Training Sites of World Series Teams
Shockingly, more teams have advanced to the World Series after training in Cuba than in Sarasota, from which no team has ever embarked on a championship run despite 80 years of trying. To see where the World Series winners have wintered (and the runner-ups too), we've listed the city/states where all 108 Fall Classic participants held their Spring Training camps, breaking the list down into two eras: 1947 to present, and 1903-1946. That split was chosen because 1947 was the first year that teams permanently set up camp in Arizona. Since that groundbreaking spring training, the only states to send their trainees to the World Series are Arizona and Florida; prior to '47 the finalists came from 10 states.
2012 Spring Training Recap
For the first time in eight years a new spring training ballpark was built in Florida, as a taste of Fenway Park came South with the debut of JetBlue Park, the Boston-inspired ballpark in Fort Myers. Featuring a Green Monster and the same field dimensions as Fenway, JetBlue Park's 2012 opening was a crowd drawing success as the Red Sox easily set their total, average and single-game spring training attendance records in what became the Grapefruit League's second biggest ballpark, which replaced what was previously the Florida circuit's seventh largest stadium, City of Palms Park, which became the 7th of its kind to be abandoned and remain unused (by MLB teams) in the Sunshine State in the past 10 years.
While the Red Sox were drawing big crowds to JetBlue Park, the Dodgers hosted the largest ever crowd in a spring training ballpark -- 13,655 -- for their March 17 game against the Giants at Glendale's Camelback Ranch. The new record bested the old one, set in 2010 at the Peoria Sports Complex, by 26 fans.
Overall, 465 sanctioned spring training games were played in Arizona and Florida in 27 ballparks and a total of 3,360,742 fans paid to see them.
In the Cactus League, 232 games were played by 15 teams in 12 ballparks. Total attendance was 1,739,675, an average of 7,499 per game. Three games were rained out, all on March 18. Three of the league's games were played at Tucson's Kino Stadium, and they drew 22,981 fans to the former spring training home of the Diamondbacks and White Sox. The Diamondbacks' current regular season home, Chase Field, also hosted two games, contributing 27,593 fans to the 2012 Cactus League total.
In the Grapefruit League, 233 games were played by 15 teams in 15 ballparks. Total attendance was 1,621,067, an average of 6,957 per game. Just three games were rained out, all of them on March 11. There were two official spring training games played at the majors' newest ballpark in Miami, and the pair of Marlins-Yankees exhibitions drew 57,005 to Marlins Park. Additionally, another 36,782 paid to watch seven games that were played by Major League clubs against collegiate or non-MLB teams.
The average attendance for a spring training game in 2012 was 7,227, which was up 506 fans per game from 2011, when 474 games drew a total of 3,185,569 fans to Cactus and Grapefruit League ballparks.
The 2012 spring training season will end a four-year run of substantial franchise relocation, as nine teams changed their spring training sites from 2009-2012. In 2013, every team will be staying put and no new ballparks will be opening, which has a lot to do with that stability.
2012 Attendance Rankings
(home games only, ranked by per game average)
* Attendance figures include all games in which paid admission was collected
|Grapefruit League ||City ||Average ||Total
2. Red Sox
14. Blue Jays
Port St. Lucie
|Cactus League ||City ||Average ||Total
9. White Sox
* Standings only include games played in Arizona and Florida between MLB teams
2012 Grapefruit League Standings
| ||W ||L || T ||GB
|Blue Jays ||24 || 7 || 1 || -
|Tigers ||20 || 8 || 5 || 2½
|Cardinals ||16 || 9 || 2 || 5
|Yankees ||18 ||12 || 3 || 5½
|Red Sox ||15 ||11 || 4 || 6½
|Twins ||18 ||15 || 1 || 7
|Astros ||14 ||16 || || 9½
|Orioles ||11 ||13 || 6 || 9½
|Marlins ||11 ||14 || 4 || 10
|Nationals ||12 ||16 || 3 || 10½
|Phillies ||12 ||16 || 4 || 10½
|Rays ||10 ||16 || 6 || 11½
|Braves ||10 ||18 || 5 || 12½
|Pirates || 9 ||18 || 2 || 13
|Mets || 9 ||20 || 2 || 14
2012 Cactus League Standings
| ||W ||L || T ||GB
|A's ||14 || 5 || 2 || -
|Mariners ||16 || 9 || 1 || 1
|Angels ||17 ||11 || 2 || 1½
|Padres ||19 ||15 || || 2½
|Rockies ||17 ||15 || 1 || 3½
|Giants ||16 ||14 || 3 || 3½
|Cubs ||16 ||15 || 2 || 4
|Dodgers ||14 ||13 || 4 || 4
|Royals ||15 ||15 || || 4½
|Brewers ||15 ||17 || 2 || 5½
|Reds ||15 ||17 || 1 || 5½
|D-backs ||15 ||18 || 2 || 6
|White Sox ||13 ||18 || || 7
|Rangers ||11 ||16 || 1 || 7
|Indians || 7 ||22 || 3 ||12
"People ask me what I do in winter when there's no baseball. I'll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring."
- Hall of Famer Rogers Hornsby
"It's the fans that need spring training. You gotta get 'em interested. Wake 'em up and let 'em know that their season is coming, the good times are gonna roll.”
- Harry Caray
Contact Us With Any Questions About Spring Training