At long last and after many, many roster revisions; the World Baseball Classic gets under way tomorrow. Or tonight. It depends on where you live, as the first round of games take place in either Taiwan or Fukuoka, Japan.
The defending champions from Japan play Brazil while Cuba, who Japan bested to win the inaugural tournament in 2006, take on the surprising entrants from China. The entire event kicks off late tonight as Taiwan (Chinese Taipei) face Australia before Korea battles the Netherlands in Pool B’s other game.
Some of the lustre and a lot of interest waned as more and more names slid off rosters due to injury or indifference. No matter who is out there, one thing I will guarantee is it beats the pants off Grapefruit League and Cactus League action.
You don’t need another column telling you why you should like the WBC. Ken Rosenthal wrote one earlier today and I’ve written similar things in the past. Just go ahead and give it a chance. If you love baseball, it isn’t like you have a lot in the way of choice.
Why don’t you let the latest Getting Blanked podcast get you in the mood, as we half-assedly look over the rosters and talk about our relative levels of excitement for this tournament. It is a round-robin style tournament, so don’t expect a lot in the way of predictions. We also touch on some of the recent injury notes from around spring trainingz.
Hit the mp3 link for direct download right here.
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