Countries Outside the US where Baseball is Popular
When somebody mentions baseball you immediately think the USA. However, while baseball is the product of American culture, its influence and popularity have been spreading across the globe to other countries in the world.
Today, many countries have their own national teams and even professional leagues. They participate in all kinds of events and tournaments. It may not still be as widespread and popular as the likes of basketball and soccer but the popularity of baseball overshadows these sports in certain countries.
The North American continent is where it all began. Baseball started in the US but it quickly reached some of the neighboring countries. Today, Mexico and Canada are considered as countries with some of the most organized baseball leagues in the world.
For that matter, there are many professional Major League and Minor League players coming from Mexico and Canada. In Mexico, baseball is one of the top three sports along with soccer and boxing. While Canada considers baseball as the second most popular sport, coming after ice hockey.
Other notable countries are of course Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico.
Asia is probably the second area where the popularity of baseball overshadows some other major sports. Baseball is played in Japan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Israel, Taiwan, etc. The popularity of baseball is particularly high in Japan and Israel. The Japanese Baseball League is considered one of the best in the world as it was devised based on the example of MLB. However, Taiwan has the most Little League World Championships, after the USA, in Asia making it one of the hubs for baseball on the continent.
Europe is not particularly fond of baseball, but its popularity has been growing in recent times. The most dominant countries in Europe playing baseball are Italy and Netherland. Their dominance is so high that Italy won 25 while the Netherlands got 27 European titles in the history of the sports. The only other two counties to ever with a title in Europe are Belgium and Spain.
Baseball is also popular in Russia, the Czech Republic, France, and the UK.
New Zealand and Australia
You would be surprised how actually baseball is popular in these parts of the world. Both countries have their own professional leagues and organizations. New Zealand particularly has had a lot of success in regional tournaments and has even produced a fair share of MLB players appearing in the league even today.
The Southern continent of the Americas is not particularly seen as a baseball hub of the world. With the majority of the countries valuing soccer, some even basketball, over baseball it did not allow this sport to develop as much it would in some other parts of the world. Still, countries like Brazil and Venezuela take center stage when it comes to baseball on the continent.
Brazil has its own organization and there are several minor leagues and competitions organized across the country. Venezuela also has its own national league and its national team is also successful when it comes to baseball. The Venezuelan team has won the Caribbean Series two times and is a notable competitor on the world stage.
Here is where the popularity of baseball dips immensely. There are no significant activities around baseball found in Africa. Unfortunately, this is the continent where the outbreak of baseball has never happened. The only recorded example of baseball in Africa is with the South African team as they were the only team from this continent to participate in an international competition of some sort.