It seems like the season ended just yesterday….. *touches ear piece* I’m now being informed that the regular season did in fact end yesterday as the Louisville Bats won their final game of the Triple-A regular season. The fall and winter leagues are right around the corner, though. With the way the Triple-A schedule works now (they play more games now than they used to), the end of the season and the start of fall and winter ball is closer together than ever before.
There are a handful of countries around the world that have fall or winter league baseball. The US has the Arizona Fall League, which features minor league players and a few guys who have had limited big league experience. In Australia it’s similar in that it’s mostly a prospect league, but you will see some guys with big league experience (who are almost exclusively Australian) – but you also get guys from non-affiliated baseball playing in this league.
The leagues in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, and the Dominican Republic are more of a mixture of prospects, non-affiliated players, and big leaguers. There are also lesser known and lesser covered leagues in Panama and Nicaragua – where it’s tough to try and find much of any in-season information on it.
Rosters are still being set for just about every team and league. We know who will be playing in the Arizona Fall League. Beyond that, we don’t have the best idea of who will be playing where just yet. Particularly in the Latin American leagues players who aren’t performing well can and will be removed from rosters. And as the season goes along more experienced and advanced players will join teams for stretch runs and playoffs, pushing some guys off of the active rosters.
When do the leagues begin?
- Arizona Fall League – October 3
- Mexican Winter League – October 11
- Dominican Winter League – October 15
- Venezuelan Winter League – October 22
- Puerto Rican Winter League – November 4
- Australian Winter League – November 10
Where can you follow?
Obviously you can and will get updates here. MLB used to provide a great website where all of the above leagues stats were available in one place and you could even filter them by the MLB organization to see how players from each were performing around the world. Unfortunately they stopped doing that in either 2018 or 2019 and it’s been a nightmare trying to track down everything since.
Baseball Reference will have updated stats as the seasons go along, but they are often enough several days behind if the past will be an indicator this year. Links are not yet available for any of the winter leagues yet at Baseball Reference since the seasons have not yet begun. Below are the links to each of the league stat pages on their official websites:
- Arizona Fall League
- Mexican Winter League
- Dominican Winter League
- Venezuelan Winter League (Hitting | Pitching)
- Puerto Rican Winter League
- Australian Winter League