I love classic world baseball. There is nothing better for the sport than promoting it around the world, and watching players play in their home countries (or, at least, the countries they are eligible to represent) can produce a high-drama baseball game during the month of March.
The COVID pandemic canceled the 2021 WBC, so it’s been six years since the USA last won it. The Cubs played rightback Marcus Stroman, then with the Blue Jays, in that year’s championship game (shown above).
This year, Strowman will throw for Puerto Rico — he qualifies because his mom was born there.
Here are the other Cubs that will be in the WBC and the states they will represent:
Matt Mervis Israel
Miles Mastroponi – Italy
Ben DiLuzio Italy
Trey Mancini – Italy
Owen Casey – Canada
Danis Correa – Colombia
Ruinis Elias Cuba
Esteban Queiroz – Mexico
Nick Madrigal – Mexico
Javier the Lion – Mexico
Marcus Stroman – Puerto Rico
siya suzuki japan
– KurtisArndt January 18, 2023
There is another WBC cub not on that list – Rowan Wake, who will be playing for Canada. Cubs minor leaguer Jared Young, who made his MLB debut last September, is also tentatively slated to be on Canada’s WBC team.
As for the others, most of them are junior players who will be in the camp on minor league deals, with the exception of Trey Mancini and Nick Madrigal.
If you think this takes away from preparing for the 2023 season then I would argue that playing in the WBC may give players better preparation that instead of playing multiple innings in a meaningless game many of those players (or pitch) will play multiple innings in a game or games that mean something actually.
Seiya Suzuki will have to leave the Cubs camp and return to Japan to play pool there. Practice begins in Japan on March 5 and pool play begins on March 9 (with two exhibition games for each country’s team in between).
For the Cubs, who play Italy and Cuba, will have to leave for Taiwan, which hosts a pool game that includes those countries. Practice starts on the 4th of March and the pool game starts on the 8th of March.
Canada, Colombia and the USA will train and play pool in the Phoenix area, so Cubs who play for those countries will not have to leave camp. In fact, the Canadian team will be working out at the Sloan Park complex in Mesa on March 7, so if you’re interested you can go and watch those workouts. Canada will next play the Cubs in an exhibition game March 8 at Sloane Park (I’ll be there!) before starting pool play at Chase Field March 11. I’m planning to go to a Canada-US match there on Monday, March 13.
Finally, Strowman and Matt Mirvis will head to Miami to play pool as they will represent Puerto Rico and Israel, respectively. Practice begins in Miami on March 7 and pool play begins on March 11.
This is the full WBC rehearsal/show schedule Here is the tournament class:
Here are the pool playing schedules (note, for Pool A and Pool B, the dates are listed in the European format, with the first date and the second month):
Fox Sports is the exclusive broadcast home of the WBC All 47 matches will be broadcast on Fox-TV, FS1, FS2, Fox Deportes, Tubi and the Fox Sports app.
We’ll have full WBC coverage here as the tournament progresses.