The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) today unveiled the final 2017 standings in the WBSC Baseball World Rankings Presented by ENEOS, which weigh a country’s National Team performance (from U-12 to Professional) in WBSC-sanctioned international competitions over a four-year period (2014-2017).
Marking a truly global competitive balance, baseball/softball is the only sport with nations from the Americas (North-, South- and the Caribbean), Asia, Europe and Oceania in the Top 10 of the respective world rankings.
Japan remains the top-ranked nation for a third straight year, a position held since November 2014.
USA Baseball squads, however, were the most successful in 2017, sweeping the world championships — the U-12 Baseball World Cup, U-18 Baseball World Cup and World Baseball Classic — to earn a record high 2,127 annual ranking points.
Mexico and Australia both hit historical highs in 2017, climbing to No. 6 and No. 7 in the world, respectively.
Israel made the biggest jump over the last 12 months, advancing from No. 41 to No. 19 while defeating four Top 10 nations — Chinese Taipei, Cuba, Korea and Netherlands – in their World Baseball Classic debut.
Most rankings points earned in 2017
United States of America – 2127 pts.
Japan – 1604 pts.
Republic of Korea – 1178 pts.
Netherlands – 1133 pts.
Australia – 1015 pts.
Cuba and Puerto Rico – 1008 pts.
Biggest Gainers in 2017
El Salvador +18
Australia and Greece +4
New Countries Entering the World Rankings in 2017
No. 53 El Salvador
No. 62 Guam
No. 68 Costa Rica
No. 72 Aruba
No. 73 American Samoa
No. 73 Nepal
No. 75 U.S. Virgin Islands
Countries Falling out of the World Rankings in 2017
The official 2018 international baseball calendar features two world championships that will have the biggest impact on this year’s men’s baseball world rankings: the U-15 Baseball World Cup (10-19 Aug.) in Panama City, Panama, and the U-23 Baseball World Cup (19-28 Oct.) in Managua, Nicaragua.
The Top 12 nations in the 2018 end-of-the-year WBSC Baseball World Rankings will qualify for the WBSC Premier12 2019, the men’s professional National Team global championship and Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 qualifier.
The WBSC Baseball World Rankings will next be calculated in the coming weeks, as points earned in 2014 are set to expire.
The web-based version and methodology of the WBSC World Rankings Presented by ENEOS can be found at www.wbsc.org/rankings.