Updated by Joe D. on 1/17
The rosters have all been announced for the World Baseball Classic and David Wright will be the only Met player participating.
Lacking any other legitimate star players, this is not really a surprise.
In the last WBC the Mets had more players participating than any other MLB team including Wright, Carlos Beltran, Jose Reyes, J.J. Putz, and others.
R.A. Dickey will also play together with Wright for Team USA.
You may remember Dickey referring to himself and Wright as a package deal with regards to signing extensions.
Of course Wright, who knew the plan, never reciprocated which leads me to believe that their first encounter is going to be…
Original Post 1/14
The World Baseball Classic will begin on March 2 and some of Major League Baseball’s biggest stars have confirmed their participation in the event
David Wright was among the first two players to confirm that he would be playing for Team USA. The other being the Twins’ Joe Mauer.
“It’ll be great to put on a Team USA jersey again,” Wright said. “I’m honored to play for Team USA and take another crack at winning what is clearly the most difficult baseball tournament in the world.”
“After I got the chance to play a few years ago, I knew I wanted to participate again,” Wright said. “The biggest reason is obviously the opportunity to represent your country and wear the uniform with USA across the chest. It’s an incredible feeling.”
“Also, I get to be around some of the best players in the game for a few weeks,” Wright continued. “It’s a great atmosphere and I try to learn and pick up some things from those guys.”
First-round matchups will take place in Fukuoka, Japan; Taichung, Taiwan; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Phoenix, Ariz.
Each team has revealed two players who will represent their country during the tournament, and the cast includes 12 Major League All-Stars. Full 28-man rosters will be announced on Wednesday.
Some players who were asked to participate have declined and they include Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp, and Mike Trout and Josh Hamilton of the Angels among other stars.
It made me wonder whether sending Wright to play in this exhibition is a good idea, especially after just signing a lucrative $140 million deal with the Mets. I asked some of our writers how they felt.
Joe S. - I’ve never been a fan of the WBC only because it forces players to engage at a high level of play far too soon –exposing players to avoidable injuries. Hopefully Joe Torre will be mindful of this and rotate his players accordingly.
Connor – I don’t really have a problem with it. David’s a position player, so for him, the World Baseball Classic only means more reps against live pitching. If it was Matt Harvey or some other prized pitcher, I would have a problem with it. Then, you’re really risking injury by messing with the pitcher’s routine and giving them extra work at a time when they are trying to rebuild strength for the season. The odds of something happening to David are slim, probably the same as if he were to stay with the Mets in Port St. Lucie.
Jessica - David Wright will follow the same spring schedule that he always has, reporting to Port St. Lucie shortly after the Super Bowl to begin workouts and batting practice. 2009 was an off-year for David Wright, with the weight of the team falling mostly on his shoulders. While not statistically the worst season of his career, 2009 was right up there. I think that this time around, David knows what to expect and what he needs to do in order to prepare for not only the WBC, but the regular season as well.
Drew – Last time we sent a Mets contingent you know what happened; Wright, Beltran, Delgado, Putz and Perez all ended up spending time on the DL or even missing the rest of the season. They go from doing drills with their teammates in spring camp and are thrust into an extremely high level of play for almost four weeks. I never understood the timing of it. Many players are not flocking to play as they did in the first go-around. That speaks volumes.
Clare - I think it’s great that David is playing in the WBC representing the Mets and the USA. David is a smart player and if he is hurt in any way, he will pull himself out of the games to focus on the season.
Gregg - I don’t see a need for a World Baseball Classic, I think it a pretty dumb idea. I’m surprised MLB teams are going along with the concept, considering the about of money they have invested in the players. I’m against any starting players playing in it. If a guy blows out an ACL and misses the entire season because he was playing the WBC, what benefit is that to his team, or MLB as a whole?
I’m with Joe, Gregg and Drew on this. Hopefully Wright doesn’t go all out and really push the envelope, but that’s not the kind of player he is.
What do you think?