World Baseball Classic brings fans from different countries to Phoenix

Phoenix is one of four international cities the opening games are played at
Chase Field hosts the WBC and is bringing lots of business to Phoenix.
Published: Mar. 10, 2023 at 6:08 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - Spring training isn’t the only baseball that’s bringing fans from all over the country and the world to the Valley. On Saturday, the World Baseball Classic begins at Chase Field in Downtown Phoenix.

The tournament only happens once every few years but was last played in 2017 because COVID-19 prevented it from happening. A team of players are sent from 20 different countries to see who has the best in the world. Pool C is playing their games at Chase Field from Saturday through Wednesday.

On Friday, fans were getting in line to buy tickets to some of the games this weekend. Rick Freire flew in with a few of his friends to watch some baseball. “I’m excited for the atmosphere, and I’m excited for the games,” Freire said. “Everything that the Classic comes with its great. You wait four years for it, but six years unfortunately because of COVID-19, but it’s worth the wait.”

The Diamondbacks had to get Chase Field ready a month earlier than their typical season, but they are prepared to host the games. The logos can be seen outside and inside the stadium.

The Arizona Chamber of Commerce says it’s another big event that brings big dollars into the state. “Arizona once again is ready to welcome fans from all over the country and all over the world for a major sporting event. Coming off the success of the Super Bowl and WM Phoenix Open, Arizona is proud to welcome visitors who will be contributing to our $24.2 billion sports & tourism sector and who will be helping to support the nearly 350,000 Arizonans whose jobs are connected to the industry,” said Annie Dockendorff, Arizona Chamber of Commerce & Industry spokesperson.

The big matchup in Phoenix will be the United States against Mexico. The game Sunday night is already sold out. Phoenix is one of four international cities the opening games are played at. The finals will be played in Miami. Click here to buy tickets or check out the schedule.