The World Baseball Classic is set to be held this spring, and the Minnesota Twins will be well represented when the action gets underway.
Seven players from the Twins will appear in the WBC, with more potentially to be added later. Right now Australia, China, Colombia, and Canada have yet to announce their rosters. Aside from players appearing on WBC rosters, former Twins players could appear as coaches, with Bert Blyleven already being named as the pitching coach for Netherlands
Every four years players from all over the world come together in what essentially amounts to the Baseball Olympics, or the World Cup for baseball. Team USA won the WBC back in 2017 when the event was last held, and the COVID-19 pandemic threw a wrench in plans for 2021.
But the World Baseball Classic is back, and ready to help get us all ready for baseball to return.
Here’s a look at which Minnesota Twins players are participating in the World Baseball Classic this year:
P - Ariel Jurado
P - Jovani Moran
IF - José Miranda
C - Christian Vázquez
P - Pablo López
P - Jhoan Durán
IF - Jorge Polanco
Carlos Correa was originally added to the roster for Puerto Rico, but withdrew so that his participation wouldn’t take him away from his wife Daniella and the brith of their child. According to Dan Hayes from The Athletic, the Twins supported Correa in his decision to put his family first.
If Ariel Jurado doesn’t ring a bell, it’s because he has no actual service time at the Major League level in Minnesota. Jurado is in the Twins minor league system, playing at Triple-A with the St. Paul Saints.
When is the World Baseball Classic 2023?
The World Baseball Classic will take place between March 8th and March 21st, which means it’s taking place during Spring Training. Players who are on active rosters but also on WBC rosters will be excused based on when and where they will play for their home country.
Thankfully for the Twins, their players won’t have to go far. Outside of Jurado — who has to travel to Taiwan but isn’t among Minnesota’s Spring Training invitees — no one has to travel outside of the United States for any of their games. Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, and Venezuela are all in Group D, which will have its games played in LoanDepot Park in Miami.
The semifinals and championship will also be held at LoanDepot Park, so if any of country that has Twins players on its roster won’t have to stray far from Fort Meyers.