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UConn, Michigan, Missouri, Penn State, Rice, Stetson, Villanova, and UVA debut in 2025.

NEW YORK, NY, UNITED STATES, January 4, 2024 /EINPresswire.com/ — For the first time in Puerto Rico’s history, from February 13-16, 2025, the cities of Ponce and Mayagüez together will welcome eight elite Division I collegiate baseball teams to play in the inaugural Puerto Rico Challenge. Produced by JoGi Sports and MB Sports, the Puerto Rico Challenge is already recognized as the most anticipated, early season annual series in college baseball. Thousands of players, family, friends, and fans are expected to enjoy high level games with some of the Caribbean’s most unforgettable beaches and cultural attractions in the background.

The Puerto Rico Challenge aims equally to underscore to the island’s young athletes that attending a US college is a legitimate option for them. Former collegiate players will speak to local youth to emphasize how baseball can help them get admitted to prestigious universities, which can then yield potential MLB opportunities, as well as set them up for successful careers beyond baseball. A college fair attended by US-based university representatives will be held at which displays, brochures, and one-on-one conversations will introduce local students, parents, and families to a number of schools across the United States.

A day of community service will be performed by team players and coaches. Together, they will provide free baseball clinics to area elementary school-aged children, exposing them to the actual coaches and players from their programs and, potentially sparking dreams to pursue college admission.

Said Eduardo Perez, Special Advisor to the Puerto Rico Challenge who, since 2016, has served as ESPN’s broadcast analyst for the College World Series, “I played and coached in the Majors for 16 years after graduating high school in San Juan and Florida State University. It’ll be a privilege to talk with the island’s young athletes. Hopefully, my path to MLB and career within it will inspire them to think strategically, and consider the world of opportunities that can materialize through a college education.”

As well, the Puerto Rico Challenge will feature an exhibit showcasing the storied baseball culture of Puerto Rico, including the impressive roster of Puerto Rican players who not only made it to the Major Leagues, they made HISTORY, earning themselves a place in MLB’s Hall of Fame.

All games will be played in two professional quality stadiums on tournament fields that are annually approved and inspected by the MLB Commissioner’s Office. Both will be equipped with TrackMan technology for use by participating teams, and Rawlings has been selected as the series’ official baseball. In Ponce, games will be played in Francisco “Paquito” Montaner Stadium. Used for winter training by many MLB players and home stadium to the Puerto Rico Winter Baseball League’s Leones de Ponce, the stadium boasts seating capacity of 8,000 and new artificial turf. In Mayagüez, Isidoro García Stadium, home of the Indios de Mayagüez, is freshly renovated including new turf, and seats up to 10,000 spectators.

Both cities are ideal locations for the Puerto Rico Challenge. Featuring a climate perfect for year-round baseball, each city is also home to an array of upscale hotels, dining attractions, cultural experiences, and is accustomed to hosting large scale events. Unlike other Caribbean destinations, no passport is required to travel from the US to Puerto Rico. As well, no currency exchange is needed as Puerto Rico’s only currency is the US dollar. And, US cell phones require no international upgrades or special plans.

Said Acting Mayor of Mayagüez, Ing. Jorge L. Ramos Ruiz, “The city of Mayagüez has demonstrated the capacity to organize, receive, and present big international events at the best sports facilities in the Caribbean. For this reason, ‘The City of Sports and Culture’ will host the Puerto Rico Challenge 2025, in which 8 NCAA Division I baseball teams will play a spectacular Opening Day. In addition to being an event combining sports, culture, education, and family, it is a great opportunity to continue to boost economic development in the western part of the island through sports tourism.”

Said Acting Mayor Marlese Sifre, “Ponce embraces and is honored to host the Puerto Rico Challenge. In the last five years we’ve survived two major hurricanes, a magnitude 6.4 earthquake, and the pandemic. While these disasters have shaken us, our recovery has been steady. Our stadium and sports facilities are again top notch, and we are known for our hospitality excellence in supporting international events. I commit that our municipal government will work hand in hand with the industrial and business sectors to ensure the initiative is a resounding success. And importantly, our people eat, sleep, and breathe baseball. I cannot overemphasize the impact this initiative will have on the region’s young players and students. For many, exposing them to NCAA organizations and US-based universities could be life-changing.”

The eight teams committed to play in 2025 are University of Connecticut, University of Michigan, University of Missouri, Penn State, Rice University, Stetson University, Villanova University, and University of Virginia.

The Puerto Rico Challenge is owned and operated by JoGi Sports and MB Sports, partnered sports marketing firms specialized in producing premium sporting events. Headquartered in New York and Puerto Rico, their team of seasoned executives is deeply committed to baseball and to delivering exceptional experiences for their partner cities, teams, players, fans, sponsors, broadcasters, hospitality companies, and others. Puerto Rico Challenge Special Advisors include MLB veterans Eduardo Perez, Edwin Rodriguez, and Lou Melendez, each having performed at the highest levels as an MLB player, coach, and/or executive.

To speak with us or to learn more about sponsorship opportunities for the Puerto Rico Challenge 2025 and ensuing years, please contact us at [email protected]. For more information on the Puerto Rico Challenge, please visit www.PRBaseballChallenge.com.

Susan Mallory
Mission1 Public Relations
+1 551-404-3963
[email protected]

Originally published at https://www.einpresswire.com/article/679056948/jogi-sports-mb-sports-bring-division-i-college-baseball-to-puerto-rico-with-puerto-rico-challenge-in-february-2025

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