Baseball Spring Training Florida 2017

Spring Training Sites Come to Life in Mid February

The Sarasota area is centrally located to three baseball spring training Florida sites; one for the Baltimore Orioles Spring Training work outs in Sarasota; one for the Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training practice in Bradenton and one for the Tampa Bay Rays in Port Charlotte.

Sarasota's Ed Smith Stadium, the new home of the Orioles starting in 2010, has undergone a significant "face lift" and refurbishment. The stadium looks brand new.

McKechnie Field in Bradenton has been home to the Pittsburgh Pirate Spring Training games since 1969 and the Pirates work outs take place nearby at their spring training facility called "Pirate City."

And if you're willing to drive south about a half-hour from the Sarasota-Venice, Florida area you'll be able to watch the 2008 American League Champion Tampa Bay Rays work out in Port Charlotte at Charlotte Sports Park, also newly refurbished within the past several years.

Spring Training Ed Smith Stadium

Baseball Spring Training Florida

Spring training starts in mid February as the ball players first begin to arrive. Baseball spring training is an exciting time of year, holding new hopes and promises for a winning season and perhaps even a world championship in “far off” October.

Actual Spring Training Exhibition Games begin in late February - early March.

Recent past history: After a year or two of the City of Sarasota and Sarasota County talking deals with the Cincinnati Reds and the Boston Red Sox, all of which fell through, the O's became the "new" spring training tradition in Sarasota.

Sarasota’s Ed Smith Stadium, at 12th Street and Tuttle Avenue, began being the new home of the Baltimore Orioles Baseball Spring Training Florida facility in 2010.

Ed Smith Orioles Stadium Sarasota Florida

Baseball Spring Training Florida

The Orioles Spring Training workouts are free and open to the public. The work outs take place on the diamonds behind Ed Smith Stadium and start around 9:30 a.m. and it's a great way to see your favorite players get in shape for the new season.

The Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training grounds are located in nearby Bradenton, Florida, a short drive from Sarasota's Ed Smith Stadium.

Baseball Spring Training Florida

The Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training Schedule has the games at McKechnie Field and Spring Training work outs at "Pirate City."

The Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training workouts are free and open to the public. The Pirates start around 10 a.m. Pirate City is located at 1701 27th Street East, Bradenton.

Baseball Spring Training Florida - History

Teams that have held the annual rite of Baseball Spring Training in Sarasota:

  • New York Giants: 1924 - 1927

  • Indianapolis Indians: 1929 - 1932

  • Boston Red Sox: 1933 - 1958

  • Los Angeles Dodgers: 1959

  • Chicago White Sox: 1960 - 1997

  • Cincinnati Reds: 1997 - 2008

  • Baltimore Orioles: 2010 -

Baseball Spring Training Florida

The location of spring training games from 1924 - 1988 was Sarasota's Payne Park, just south of Sarasota's downtown area and just east of U.S. 301 at 2050 Adams Lane.

Together, the Sarasota and Bradenton areas have seen some of the biggest names in baseball history take part in spring training through the decades since 1924.

Just some of baseball's legendary players who have played here in the region during spring training include: Rogers Hornsby, Henry Aaron, Roberto Clemente, Ted Williams, Tom Seaver, Cal Ripkin, Jr., Carlton Fisk, Eddie Mathews, Sandy Koufax and Jimmie Fox.


Baltimore Orioles Spring Training

Baltimore Orioles Warm Up Jacket

The Baltimore Orioles Spring Training Camp arrived in Sarasota in 2010. With a 30 year lease on Ed Smith Stadium, the Orioles are no longer the vagabonds of the Grapefruit League as they make their new home in a welcoming Sarasota.

Spring training gets underway around mid February on the outer fields of Ed Smith Stadium at the City of Sarasota Sports Complex. Click here for more on Baltimore Orioles Spring Training.

Click here for 2017 Baltimore Orioles Spring Training Schedule and Tickets

The First Baltimore Orioles Fan Fest in Sarasota, Florida

Orioles Mascot at Sarasota's Ed Smith Stadium

The Baltimore Orioles first ever Fan Fest for their new spring training home in Sarasota, Florida took place in the Fall of 2009. The day was filled with bright Florida sunshine, warm smiles and greetings and prizes for the fans from the Baltimore Orioles Baseball Organization. Click here to read about and see pictures of the festivities.


Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training

Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training Logo

Bradenton’s McKechnie Field and Pirate City have been the baseball spring training sites to the Pittsburgh Pirates since 1969. The field was built in 1923, redone in 1993 and there was an $18 million renovation in recent years for this spring training Mecca. Bradenton will remain the spring training home of the Pirates, under a lease, until at least 2038. Here's more on the Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training workouts.

Click here for the 2017 Pittsburgh Pirates Spring Training Schedule and Spring Training Tickets.


Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training

Tampa Rays Spring Training Stadium

Port Charlotte, Florida is the baseball spring training site for the 2008 American League Champion Tampa Bay Rays. The inaugural Rays spring training season in 2009 found The Charlotte County Sports Park newly renovated to welcome the Tampa Bay Rays. With a capacity of 7,000 and within an hour’s drive from the Sarasota/Venice, Florida area, click here for more on the Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training Season.

Click here for the 2017 Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training Schedule and Spring Training Tickets.


A Tribute to the Cincinnati Reds Spring Training Years in Sarasota: 1997 - 2009

Cincinnati Reds Spring Training Sarasota Florida

The Cincinnati Reds came to Sarasota for baseball spring training, Florida Style, for 12 years! Ed Smith Stadium and its outer practice fields were the off-season home to the Big Red Machine and every year around mid February the hometown fans would show up to watch the players get in shape for another baseball season. The Reds moved to Goodyear, Arizona in 2010. Here's more about the Cincinnati Reds Baseball Spring Training Sites in Sarasota.

Tribute: The Last Cincinnati Reds
Rally in Sarasota: 2007

Cincinnati Reds Rally in downtown Sarasota Florida

While Ed Smith Stadium and its outlying diamonds were the “official” Cincinnati Reds Spring Training Site through 2009, there was another place where the Reds were welcomed with open arms, the "Reds Rally." This was an annual event, until 2007, for the "Big Red Machine" which fired everyone up for the start of another spring training season. It took place in downtown Sarasota and it was absolutely free! See photos and read more about the 2007 Cincinnati Reds Rally.




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