Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
As the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres are in the midst of playing each other six times in 10 days, a report on Tuesday indicated the teams will likely open the 2024 regular season in South Korea.
It would mark the first time an MLB game is played in the country. The league has increased its international presence in recent years, holding series in Tokyo, Australia, Mexico and London.
While MLB has every intention to host a series in South Korea, they are also working on securing possible backup sites in case the original plan falls through.
According to Dennis Lin of The Athletic, the Dodgers and Padres could potentially begin the 2024 season in Japan if the series in Seoul isn’t finalized:
With all the logistics involved, it could be months before MLB announces the Padres-Dodgers series in Seoul. Japan is believed to be a potential alternative in case the Korea series doesn’t get finalized. Both teams will be going after a certain free agent this winter.
— Dennis Lin (@dennistlin) May 9, 2023
The Dodgers and Padres opening the 2024 season in Japan would be interesting as both teams are expected to be among Shohei Ohtani’s top suitors if he reaches free agency as expected.
Ohtani is arguably the most popular athlete in Japan, and the two-way star joining either the Dodgers or Padres this offseason would add an extra level of intrigue for the 2024 Opening Series no matter where it is played.
In late March, a report suggested the Dodgers are the early favorite to sign Ohtani due to their location, recent success and financial flexibility.
Dodgers history of international games
In 2014, the Dodgers played the Arizona Diamondbacks for an Opening Series in Sydney, Australia. They also played the Padres in Mexico during the 2018 season that most notably featured a combined no-hitter started by Walker Buehler while he was on a pitch count.
The Dodgers otherwise have not played regular season games outside of the United States or Canada.
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