Opening Day rosters feature 269 players born internationally

March 31st, 2023

On the heels of the most exciting World Baseball Classic we’ve experienced, it’s fitting that when the Major League players who represented their respective countries in the tournament rejoined their big league teams, Opening Day rosters featured one of the most internationally diverse collections of players in MLB history.

A total of 269 internationally born players representing 19 countries or territories outside the 50 United States were on 2023 Opening Day rosters Thursday, including players on the injured list and players on the inactive list. That is 28.5 percent of the total number of players on Opening Day rosters.

It also marks the third-most internationally born players on Opening Day rosters since MLB began releasing such annual data in 1995. The only years in which there were more were 2020 (291, with expanded 30-man rosters due to the pandemic-shortened campaign) and ’22 (275, with 28-man rosters).

Among countries and territories outside the U.S., the Dominican Republic had the largest number of players on Opening Day rosters, with 104. That continues a streak of leading in this category in each year data has been available. The only year in which the D.R. had more players on Major League rosters on Opening Day was 2020 (110).

Here is a breakdown of countries/territories and the number of players represented:

1. Dominican Republic: 104
2. Venezuela: 62
3. Cuba: 21
4. Puerto Rico: 19
5. Mexico: 15 (most since 2005)
6. Canada: 10
7. Japan: 8
8. Colombia: 7
9-T. Curaçao: 4
9-T. Panama: 4
9-T. South Korea: 4
12-T. The Bahamas: 2
12-T. Nicaragua: 2
14-T. Aruba: 1
14-T. Australia: 1
14-T. Brazil: 1
14-T. Germany: 1
14-T. Honduras: 1
14-T. Taiwan: 1

For the third straight year, the club with the most internationally born players on its Opening Day roster is the defending World Series champion Astros, with 16. Here is a breakdown of the top teams in this category:

1. Astros: 16
2-T. Twins: 15
2-T. Padres: 15
4-T. Marlins: 13
4-T. Yankees: 13
6-T. White Sox: 11
6-T. Mets: 11
6-T. Athletics: 11

The team with the most countries and territories outside the U.S. represented on its Opening Day roster this year is the Padres, with seven. San Diego also led in this category last season, with eight. The Red Sox, Astros, Twins and Blue Jays each had six countries and territories represented.

Also of note, 89 of the 269 internationally born players on Opening Day rosters Thursday were also on 2023 World Baseball Classic rosters. Seven of those players were selected to the All-World Baseball Classic Team after the tournament: (Mexico; Cuban descent/birthplace), (Puerto Rico), (Chinese Taipei), (Cuba), (Japan), (Venezuela) and (Japan).