<<<Click here for the newer post with more complete lineups>>>
The 2009 World Baseball Classic is around the corner. I probably won’t get too much into it here, just a little preview as well as some thoughts/coverage once it gets going. As a fan of the good old US of A, I’ll probably give a perspective more focused on that team, at least at the beginning. While we’re at it, here is the possible lineup so far:
C – Brian McCann
1B – Kevin Youkilis
2B – Dustin Pedroia
3B – David Wright / Chipper Jones
SS – Derek Jeter / Jimmy Rollins
LF – Ryan Braun
CF – Grady Sizemore, Curtis Granderson
RF – Brad Hawpe
UTIL – Mark DeRosa
SP – Jake Peavy
SP – Roy Oswalt
SP – John Lackey
RP – Steve Shields
RP – Brian Fuentes
RP – Jonathan Broxton
RP – BJ Ryan
RP – JJ Putz
RP – Joe Nathan
I like this team because, despite the fact that so many players opted out of the classic, this team is still stacked. More importantly, except for the old Yankee captain, Chipper, and maybe Oswalt, nobody is on the decline here. These are mostly young players, which should bring a little more enthusiasm to this team.
They have great hitters, and 3 actual Aces as starters. They also have 5 legit closers on the team, so that, will be nice to finish out games and keep these starters from throwing 8 innings in the spring. There are a few other guys on the team (some decent young relievers) and this isn’t the complete list, but it’s a pretty impressive start. And the roster isn’t yet complete. They do need another starter or two, but then again, with that bullpen, maybe not. Provisional 45 man rosters are due at the end of the week.
The games start on March 5, and Team USA kicks off against Team Canada (Morneau, Stairs, Bay?, Votto?) on Saturday, March 7th. Regardless of your feelings on the WBC’s relevence, necessity, and effect on players in the regular season, it’s exciting to have real competitive big league level baseball going that early.