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Report: Tigres del Licey, Aguilas Cibaenas Will Play Three Games At Citi Field in November

 Matt Tallarini  |    Jul 28th, 2023 5:34pm EDT

Citi Field in the Queens borough of New York City will host a three-game series between the Tigres del Licey and the Aguilas Cibaenas in November. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)

The Aguilas Cibaeñas and the Tigres del Licey of the Liga de Béisbol Profesional de la República Dominicana will play a three-game exhibition series at Citi Field from November 10-12 after the 2023 Major League Baseball season, according to Dionisio Soldevilla of Diario Libre, a news outlet based in the Dominican Republic. 

The three-game exhibition series was officially agreed on Wednesday afternoon at the National Palace in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, with LIDOM President Vitelio Mejía and the President of the Dominican Republic Luis Abinader in attendance. The games will not count toward the LIDOM regular season standings.

Two news media entities from the Dominican Republic, Hoy Dominicana and Diario Libre, reported last year that Yankee Stadium was being examined as a site to host a three-game series between Tigres del Licey and Aguilas Cibaenas. 

Yankee Stadium is unavailable that weekend due to a football game between Syracuse University and the University of Pittsburgh on November 11, which will mark the 100th anniversary of the first college football game at the original Yankee Stadium. 

Schedule changes will be made by LIDOM officials so the Tigres and Aguilas can play in New York that weekend. The Tigres were supposed to play the Estrellas Orientales on the road in San Pedro de Macoris on November 10, and the Aguilas were scheduled to face the Leones del Escogido in Santo Domingo. 

On November 11, Aguilas was scheduled to play Gigantes del Cibao in San Francisco de Macoris, and the Tigres were scheduled to play against their inter-city rival, the Leones del Escogido, at Estadio Quisqueya Juan Marichal. 

On November 12, the Tigres were scheduled to be the home team against Leones del Escogido in Santo Domingo, while the Águilas were going to play Gigantes del Cibao at home in Santiago. 

Those games will be rescheduled for a later date prior to the beginning of the league’s round robin playoff in late December. 

The three-game series at Citi Field will be the first time that two Caribbean professional teams from the Dominican Republic have ever played a game during the winter league season in New York, as well as the first time playing at a neutral venue. The only time during the winter leagues where two teams play in a neutral venue is during the Caribbean Series outside of the host country. 

Cold conditions will likely be a factor for the three-game series at Citi Field during November. 

A few months ago, Dominican President Abinader visited New York City with Federación Nacional de Peloteros Profesionales de la República Dominicana president and former Major Leaguer Junior Noboa to negotiate the three-game series at Citi Field. 

Eligio Jaquez from the Dominican Republic Consulate in New York, and Congressman Adriano Esplliat (D-N.Y.) contributed to planning the event. 

Jose Leger will return to the Aguilas Cibaenas for his second year as manager, and Jose Offerman will be returning for his eighth season managing Tigres del Licey. 

The Tigres del Licey played in the championship final of the 2023 Caribbean Series against Leones del Caracas of Liga Venezolana de Béisbol Profesional at Estadio La Rinconada in Caracas, Venezuela, winning 3-0 for their 11th Caribbean Series title, the most by any organization in Latin America. They had not won a Caribbean Series championship title since the 2008 tournament prior to the 2023 event. 

Aguilas Cibaenas has the second-most Caribbean Series championships with six. The Aguilas’ last championship was at the 2021 Caribbean Series against Puerto Rico’s Criollos de Caguas in Mazatlan, Mexico, at Estadio Teodoro Mariscal, where they won 4-1 in the championship game under former manager Felix Fermin. 

The 2023-24 LIDOM regular season will start on October 19, with three games slated for opening day. The Santo Domingo series between the Leones del Escogido and the Tigres del Licey will be at Estadio Quisqueya Juan Marichal at 7:15 p.m. EDT. The Gigantes del Cibao will travel to Santiago to play the Aguilas Cibaenas at 7:30 p.m. EDT at Estadio Cibao. The Toros del Este will play the Estrellas Orientales a 7:30 p.m. EDT at Estadio Tetelo Vargas. 

All LIDOM games will be streamed on MLB.TV until the final out of the best-of-seven championship series in January.

Correction: A previous version of this story did not indicate that the games in New York would be exhibition games. The story has been updated to reflect that the games will be exhibition games and will not count toward the LIDOM regular season standings.