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LIDOM, Marlins Reach Strategic Partnership; LIDOM Games to Miami

 Leif Skodnick  |    Apr 27th, 2024 1:00pm EDT

An agreement between the Miami Marlins and LIDOM will likely bring more winter baseball to Miami’s loanDepot Park. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

The Miami Marlins and LIDOM, the Dominican Republic’s winter league, have reached a historic agreement that will likely bring more winter league baseball to Miami’s loanDepot Park, which hosted the 2024 Caribbean Series last February.

The agreement, announced yesterday at a press conference at Marlins Park, will run through Dec. 31, 2028, unless it is renewed. Under the agreement, LIDOM and the Marlins will work together to bring a calendar of events to the ballpark in the Little Havana section of Miami.

“Over the past two years, we’ve had almost one million fans through this building to celebrate and enjoy international baseball, and we’re proud today to announce that we’ll be entering into a long-term agreement with LIDOM to continue to bring that amazing baseball here to loanDepot Park,” said Marlins president of business operations Caroline O’Connor.

O’Connor, LIDOM president Vitelio Mejía Ortiz, and representatives of all six LIDOM teams were present at the event.

The Marlins and LIDOM worked together to bring the 2024 Caribbean Series to Miami, marking the first time that the largest event in winter baseball was played at a Major League Baseball stadium. The event drew over 340,000 fans to the ballpark in February for 25 games over nine days. LIDOM’s Tigres del Licey appeared in the championship game, falling to the Tiburones de La Guaira of the Liga Venezolana Beisbol Profesional 3-0.

“We know that in the Dominican Republic, a lot consider us the country of baseball or the country with the best players in [the] sport,” Ortiz said through an interpreter. “And one of the things that we talk about is having an MLB stadium in the Dominican Republic. Even though that’s something that might be coming soon in the next year or so, it’s something in this partnership that we’ve ventured with with the Miami Marlins, we feel that now we have a stadium in the Major Leagues.”

Venezuelan media outlet Meridiano.net’s David Benitez reported that LIDOM and the Marlins are negotiating to hold the 2028 Caribbean Series at loanDepot Park as part of the agreement.

While the Confederacion de Beisbol Profesional del Caribe announced the sites for the next five Caribbean Series, with the Dominican Republic and LIDOM scheduled to host the event again in 2028, it is possible that the postseason tournament could be moved to Miami in 2028 following the event’s success there this year.

If the event did move from the Dominican Republic to Miami, the next potential Caribbean Series to be held in the Dominican Republic would be in 2030, as Mexico is slated to host in 2025 and 2027, Puerto Rico will host the series in 2026, and Venezuela has been selected to host in 2029.

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Leif Skodnick