WBSC and FENIBA Announces Schedule For Central American Qualifier

By Matthew Tallarini
World Baseball Network

The Federacion Nicaraguense De Beisbol Asociado, FENIBA, and the World Baseball Softball Confederation announced the schedule for the Central American Qualifier event, scheduled for Feb. 6-12, 2023 in Nicaragua.  

Estadio Soberania and Estadio Stanley Cayasso will be the stadiums for the final qualifier to earn a spot in the 2023 Central American and Caribbean Games in El Salvador. The national teams that will be playing in the first stage of the round robin tournament will be host nation Nicaragua, plus Panama, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Costa Rica. 

El Salvador, as the host nation of the 2023 Central American and Caribbean Games, will just have to earn a higher ranking for the tournament to earn points in the WBSC rankings. If El Salvador receives first place in the Central American Qualifier, the second-place nation will receive a berth to the Central American and Caribbean Games. 

Panama and Nicaragua will look at this event to evaluate players for their rosters for the World Baseball Classic. World Baseball Classic qualifier Panama will open in Taiwan in the city of Taichung at Intercontinental Stadium registering in Pool A with Cuba, host nation Chinese Taipei, Italy and the Netherlands March 8-13. Panama will open against Chinese Taipei on March 8 at 6 a.m. EST.   Panama will appear in the nations second World Baseball Classic after being invited in the first edition in 2006. 

The Nicaraguan roster for the Central American Qualifiers will be filled with players from the country’s Liga de Beisbol Profesional Nacional winter league, as well as players from other winter leagues and players with Major League organizations assigned to lower minor leagues. 

Nicaragua is making its’ first appearance in the WBC as a qualifier. Nicaragua manager Sandor Guido will have a steep hill to climb, playing heavily-favored Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Puerto Rico and Israel, each of which will bring a team of Triple-A and Major League talent.  Nicaragua will open up against Puerto Rico on March 11, at noon EST for the first day of the World Baseball Classic in Pool D at Loan Depot Park, Miami. Pool D will play March 11-15. 

The full schedule for the Central American Qualifier and Nicaragua’s preliminary roster for the event are below.

Nicaragua Pre-Selection Roster For Central American Qualifier

Pitchers (Team)
Junior Tellez (Leones)
Kevin Gadea (Leones)
Joaquin Acuña (Leones and LVBP)
Berman Espinoza (Leones)
Roniel Raudes (Tren del Norte and LVBP)
Duque Hebbert (Tren del Norte)
Goffrey Bennett (Leones)
Yeris González (Tigres)
Dilmer Mejía (Free Agent)
Fidencio Flores (Free Agent)
Jesús Garrido (Free Agent)
Pedro Torres (Caimanes de Barranquilla) 

Catchers (Team)
Rodolfo Bone (Tren del Norte)
Leonardo Ortiz (Tigres)
Wiston Dávila (Leones) 
Álvaro Rubí (Tigres)

Infielders (Team)
Jesús López (Tigres) 
Iván Hernández (Tren del Norte)
Elian Miranda (Tren del Norte)
Benjamin Alegria (Leones) 
Milkar Perez (Mariners Class A)

Outfielders (Team) 
Norlando Valle (Tigres) 
Omar Mendoza (Tigres) 
Sandy Bermudez (Tren del Norte) 
Juan Diego Montes (Tren del Norte)
Dwight Britton (Leones)
Luis Montealto (Free Agent)

2023 Central American Qualifier Schedule

Monday, February 6
Costa Rica vs. Panama – 11 a.m., Estadio Soberania
Guatemala vs. El Salvador – 2 p.m., Estadio Stanley Cayasso
Honduras vs. Nicaragua – 6:30 p.m., Estadio Soberania

Tuesday, February 7
Costa Rica vs. Guatemala – 11 a.m., Estadio Soberania
Honduras vs. Panama – 2 p.m., Estadio Stanley Cayasso
Nicaragua vs. El Salvador – 6:30 p.m., Estadio Soberania

Wednesday, February 8
Guatemala vs. Honduras – 11 a.m., Estadio Soberania
El Salvador vs. Costa Rica – 2 p.m., Estadio Stanley Cayasso
Panama vs. Nicaragua – 6:30 p.m., Estadio Soberania

Thursday, February 9
Honduras vs. El Salvador – 11 a.m., Estadio Soberania
Panama vs. Guatemala – 2 p.m., Estadio Stanley Cayasso
Nicaragua vs. Costa Rico – 6:30 p.m., Estadio Soberania

Friday, February 10
El Salvador vs. Panama – 11 a.m., Estadio Soberania
Costa Rica vs. Honduras – 2 p.m., Estadio Stanley Cayasso
Guatemala vs. Nicaragua – 6:30 p.m., Estadio Soberania

Saturday, February 11
Third Seed vs. Second Seed – 1 p.m., Estadio Soberania
Fourth Seed vs. First Seed – 6:30 p.m., Estadio Soberania

Sunday, February 12
Third Place Game – 1 p.m., Estadio Soberania
Championship Game – 6:30 p.m., Estadio Soberania

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