Florida Spring Training Baseball

That sweet, hopeful scent is in the Florida air again, which can only mean two things:

  1. You might want to give up showering for a while, since you’re going to be assaulted with pollen no matter what.
  2. Spring training baseball is here.

For those who don’t know, MLB teams are divided into two separate leagues for spring training exhibitions: the cactus league (in Arizona) and the grapefruit league (in Florida). That means that exactly half of America’s professional baseball teams (15) play in our backyard for the whole month of March, plus some change.

We’re going to lay out a road map for all the different Florida cities where teams play. It’ll tell you where to go to find the team you want to watch, as well as how to buy tickets. But, if you’re the adventurous type, we’re issuing a much bigger challenge than going to watch a single team.

In fact, if you wanted to, you could see a home game for every team playing in Florida in just 14 days. We’re going to show you how. Of course, you can mix and match however you like—after all, some people have certain responsibilities like jobs and families, or so I’m told. But if you’re up for it, you can “see them all.”

A few notes about this 14-day plan:

  • The range of ballparks where spring training games are played is shaped like a horseshoe on a map, with the lower left rung starting in Ft. Myers, rising up through the Tampa area, cresting in Orlando, and diving back down until the right rung ends in South Florida. The plan in this article starts in Jupiter and ends in Ft. Myers because that was the most efficient way to do the whole trip in 2017, but you could always take a few extra days and go the other direction—just be sure to look at schedules ahead of time.
  • Four teams play in two parks (Cardinals and Marlins in Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter; Astros and Nationals in The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach). Our plan below is for someone who wants to see home games of every team, so it includes two games at each of those parks. If your goal is only to visit every spring training park this season, you can skip two of the games on this list and/or adjust as you see fit.
  • You’ll notice that there are two games lined up on day 10. The first is an Orioles game in Sarasota, with the first pitch at 1:05 EST. The second is a Blue Jays game in Dunedin, with the first pitch at 6:07 EST. That’s just how the schedule lined up; the whole string of home games was messed up without combining these two. The drive from Sarasota to Dunedin is about an hour and 20 minutes, so you should have time to see all of both, although you’ll be cutting it close.

Day 1 (March 18): Cardinals—Roger Dean Stadium, Jupiter

Team’s spring home since: 1998

Roger Dean Stadium
4751 Main Street
Jupiter, FL 33458

Day 2 (March 19): Astros—Ballpark of the Palm Beaches, West Palm Beach

Team’s spring home since: 2017

Ballpark of the Palm Beaches
5444 Haverhill Road North
West Palm Beach, FL 33407

Day 3 (March 20): Nationals—Ballpark of the Palm Beaches, West Palm Beach

Team’s spring home since: 2017

Ballpark of the Palm Beaches
5444 Haverhill Road North
West Palm Beach, FL 33407

Day 4 (March 21): Marlins—Roger Dean Stadium, Jupiter

Team’s spring home since: 2003

Roger Dean Stadium
4751 Main Street
Jupiter, FL 33458

Day 5 (March 22): Mets—Tradition Field, Port St. Lucie

Team’s spring home since: 1988

Tradition Field
525 NW Peacock Blvd.
Port St. Lucie, FL 34986

Day 6 (March 23): Braves—Champion Stadium, ESPN Wide World of Sports, Lake Buena Vista

Team’s spring home since: 1998

ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
700 Victory Way
Kissimmee, FL 34747

Day 7 (March 24): Tigers—Joker Marchant Stadium, Lakeland

Team’s spring home since: 1966

Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium
2301 Lakeland Hills Drive
Lakeland, FL 33805

Day 8 (March 25): Yankees—George M Steinbrenner Field, Tampa

Team’s spring home since: 1996

George M. Steinbrenner Field
1 Steinbrenner Drive
Tampa, FL 33614

Day 9 (March 26): Phillies—Spectrum Field, Clearwater

Team’s spring home since: 2004

Spectrum Field
601 N. Old Coachman Road
Clearwater, FL 33765

Day 10 (March 27):

Part 1: Orioles—Ed Smith Stadium, Sarasota

Team’s spring home since: 2010

Ed Smith Stadium
2700 12th Street
Sarasota, FL 34237

Part 2: Blue Jays—Florida Auto Exchange Stadium, Dunedin

Team’s spring home since: 1977

Florida Auto Exchange Stadium
373 Douglas Avenue
Dunedin, FL 34698

Day 11 (March 28): Pirates—LECOM Park, Bradenton

Team’s spring home since: 1969

1611 Ninth Street West
Bradenton, FL 34205

Day 12 (March 29): Rays—Charlotte Sports Park, Port Charlotte

Team’s spring home since: 2009

Charlotte Sports Park
2300 El Jobean Road
Port Charlotte, FL 33948

Day 13 (March 30): Red Sox—JetBlue Park, Ft. Myers

Team’s spring home since: 2012

JetBlue Park
11500 Fenway South Drive
Fort Myers, FL 33913

Day 14 (March 31): Twins—Hammond Stadium at CenturyLink Sports Complex, Ft. Myers

Team’s spring home since: 1991

Hammond Stadium
@Century Link Sports Complex
14100 Six Mile Cypress Parkway
Ft. Myers, FL 33912

Play Ball!

Whether you take us up on our challenge, go to a game or two, or just keep tabs on how your favorite team is looking, I think we can all agree that it’s good to have spring training baseball back in our lives again. It’s been a Florida staple for over 125 years.

It might even make up for the ridiculous pollen storms. Just maybe.

By Ryan Drawdy
Feb 28, 2017