Padres and Astros to play spring training games in Mexico

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Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association announced today that the Padres and Astros will play two spring training games in Mexico this year. The games will take place in Mexico City on March 26-27.

The Padres are old-hat at playing games in Mexico. In addition to several spring training games there over the years, they played three regular-season against the New York Mets in Monterrey in 1996 as well as the 1999 Opening Day game against the Colorado Rockies.

This is all part of Major League Baseball’s ongoing efforts to grow the game internationally. Mexico has always been an attractive market for that due to its size and proximity to the United States and due to the fact that, while soccer is still king there, baseball is a long-established and well-established sport there too. You don’t have to teach Mexico to love baseball like you may have to teach people in Europe. You just have to get them more invested in U.S. baseball.

In other news, the elevation of Mexico City is 7,382 feet. Or, 2,102 feet higher than Denver, where the ball flies like mad. So what I’m saying is Astros and Padres fans shouldn’t worry too much if your pitchers give up a few more dingers than usual.