IBAF World Rankings
|Top 20 Rankings as of 20 March 2013|
The IBAF World Rankings is a ranking system for men's national teams in baseball, currently led by Cuba. The teams of the member nations of IBAF (International Baseball Federation), baseball's world governing body, are ranked based on their tournament results with the most successful teams being ranked highest. A point system is used, with points being awarded based on the results of IBAF-recognized international tournaments. Under the existing system, rankings are based on a team's performance over the last four years, with major international tournaments awarded a higher weighting compared to minor international and continental tournaments.
The ranks were most recently reissued after the 2013 World Baseball Classic. The rankings will be updated following every event that qualifies for ranking points.
In January 2009, the IBAF first published a listing in rank order of its member associations to provide a basis for comparison of the relative strengths of these teams. Though primarily focused on the respective men's senior teams of member nations, the current ranks also include points awarded based on results at the IBAF 'AAA' (Under 18) Junior and 'AA' (Under 16) Youth Championships held during the tracking period.
When the system was introduced, Cuba debuted as the top ranked team. Though they failed to win the 2009 World Baseball Classic and the 2009 Baseball World Cup, they still have a sufficient points lead over World Champions United States and World Classic champions Japan to maintain first position when the ranks were recalculated after both tournaments. Now the Dominican Republic won the last baseball classic.
|Women's Rankings as of September, 2012|
In the wake of the International Olympic Committee's decision to cut baseball from the 2012 Olympics program, the IBAF has pushed the growth of women's baseball as to include a women's component in its bid for a reinstatement of the sport in future Olympics.
The initial Women's World Rankings are based upon results from past Women's Baseball World Cups. While the calculations to the women's rankings are similar to that of the men's, one main difference is that they will be inclusive of the three most recent IBAF Women's Baseball World Cups whereas the men's rankings only include the last two. Points will then be weighted to the most recent results.
Under the current system used, points are awarded to member nations based purely on their final position in recognised international tournaments. This is opposed to other international sports ranking systems such as the ICC Test Championship for cricket, that is based on both individual matches and the results of series, or the FIFA World Rankings for association football, that is based solely on individual matches.
Points are awarded according to the following table:
|Final position||Points awarded|
|5th - 2nd-last*||Spread evenly between 15 & 1|
^* - If more than 32 teams compete, points are only awarded to the first 32 teams. (i.e. the spread is from 5th - 31st, Last gets 1 point.)
The points awarded after 4th place are spread evenly in an attempt to ensure balance between tournaments with different-sized fields: finishing 6th out of 20 teams is considered to be a higher accomplishment than finishing 6th out of 8 teams. Given that points are not fixed beyond 4th place, a calculation is used to determine how many points are awarded to each position. The calculation gives the difference between any two consecutive positions from 4th through to last (e.g. 4th and 5th, 7th and 8th, 21st and 22nd, etc.). The calculation is:
This is illustrated in the following table:
|Number of teams||Points difference||4th||5th||2nd-Last||Last|
|8||3 1/2||11 1/2||4 1/2|
|12||1 3/4||13 1/4||2 3/4|
|16||1 1/6||13 5/6||2 1/6|
|32||1/2||14 1/2||1 1/2|
A multiplier is used in awarding points, based on the prestige of the tournament and the quality of the teams involved. The table below reflects the changes in the international baseball schedule recently approved by the IBAF. Below are the multipliers that will be used beginning in 2012.
World Baseball Classic 6x (Winner receives 50 points, multiplied by 6 for a total of 300 points)
Premier 12 6x
WBC Qualifiers * (Pool winner receives 50 points, 2nd – 40 pts, 3rd – 30 pts, 4th – 15 pts)
21U and 18U 2x
15U and 12U 1x
Continental Championships, Continental Qualifiers, and all other IBAF-sponsored events will receive a multiplier based on the number of top-10 teams from the previous year-end rankings that are entered in the tournament. (See below)
1.00× - Continental Championships/Qualifying Tournaments, where 3 or more competing teams are in the previous year-end top 10
0.75× - Continental Championships/Qualifying Tournaments, where 2 competing teams are in the previous year-end top 10
0.50× - Continental Championships/Qualifying Tournaments, where 1 competing team is in the previous year-end top 10
0.25× - Continental Championships/Qualifying Tournaments, where no competing teams are in the previous year-end top 10
After each tournament where ranking points are awarded, the IBAF re-releases the ranking list with the points from the most recent tournament added, and points from tournaments more than four years old removed.
Notes and references
- IBAF Men's Baseball World Rankings after 2013 World Baseball Classic
- Womens World Ranking
- "IBAF Releases First-Ever Women’s World Rankings". International Baseball Federation. 13 August 2009. Archived from the original on 23 August 2010. Retrieved 13 August 2009.
- "IBAF World Ranking Notes" (PDF). International Baseball Federation. 13 January 2009. Archived from the original on 3 June 2009. Retrieved 12 October 2010.