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San Francisco, Miami, Phoenix to host 2013 WBC games

World Baseball ClassicAT&T Park, Marlins Park, Chase Field and Salt River Fields at Talking Stick are hosting four rounds of the 2013 World Baseball Classic, with the international sites and schedule still to be announced.

The semifinals and finals will be played at AT&T Park, home of the San Francisco Giants, while the second round will be held at Marlins Park, home of the Miami Marlins.

The first-round games in the United States will be held in Phoenix and Scottsdale, at Chase Field and Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, respectively.

The decision to hold the semis and finals on the West Coast follows the pattern of the first two classics, where semis and finals were held in San Diego and Los Angeles. Miami gets a second chance at hosting the second round — last time it was held at Dolphin Stadium. And the Diamondbacks once again are hosting games; in 2006 games were held at Scottsdale Stadium.

“We are very pleased to partner with three franchises that will prove to be outstanding hosts of the 2013 World Baseball Classic,” Paul Archey, MLB senior vice president of international business operations, told “The Giants, the Marlins and the D-backs share our commitment to continuing the game’s remarkable global growth, and their world-class cities and ballparks will welcome the unique brand of enthusiasm inspired by the World Baseball Classic.”

One thing is clear: the notion of holding WBC games in conjunction with spring-training games is almost dead. In the past WBC games were held at smaller spring venues; in 2013 only a set of first-round games will be held at a spring venue.

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