Let’s call it Wednesday!

Posted: March 15, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Spring training is up and running in Major League Baseball, but some players are away from their teams competing in the World Baseball Classic. I’ve tried to watch some of the games here and there, but I’ve had a difficult time enjoying the games.

The United States team is 2-1 in Pool C of the tournament. Some people were surprised that the United States team lost a game, but they shouldn’t be. There are a lot of limitations that manager Mark DeRosa and the other managers have to deal with when it comes to their pitching staffs.

Just yesterday there was a report that Eduardo Rodriquez would no longer be allowed to pitch for team Venezuela team. The Venezuelan team is currently 3-0 and Rodriquez wasn’t scheduled to pitch until the championship game if Venezuela made it that far. It was also reported that Venezuelan team would have to limit Miguel Cabera’s at bats to just one a game.

Now I’m not sure if ever team has been given limitations on how much a pitcher can be used or how many pitches they can throw in a game, but it has to make it very difficult to handle a pitching staff if these limitations are placed on you.

Now unfortunately it’s understandable that major league teams who pays these players’ salaries want them to be healthy for the regular season when it starts. The last thing a team would want would be for one of their top starting pitchers to get inured throwing too many innings in an exhibition game that doesn’t count towards winning a World Series.

You have to wonder if there’s some type of solution to this issue of limiting pitchers and in some cases hitters. Is it possible that moving the World Baseball Classic to different dates help the cause. I heard a suggestion yesterday that the take a two week break during the regular season and play the World Baseball Classic. I’m not sure how that would work, but maybe it’s possible to move the World Baseball Classic until after the World Series has been played.

I guess the biggest issue for the World Baseball Classic if it was moved until after the World Series would be how many major league players would want to participate. Those players would be coming off of a 162-game season plus playoffs if their team made it. They could be a little burned out and end up skipping the World Baseball Classic.

Of course, it might not be a bad thing if the major league players decided to skip it. I doubt that the television networks would be too happy, but if the major league players skipped the World Baseball Classic it could give some of the top minor league players and even college and high school players to show their skills on an international level.

I guess the difficult part if the major league players don’t participate would be television. The Fox network is carrying the games and they paid for those rights. How much would a network pay if the major league players weren’t involved?

If you’re interested in checking out a few innings of the World Baseball Classic there are four games on today. The first game starts in just under an hour on Fox Sports 2 as Venezuela takes on Israel. The second game is scheduled to start at 2:00 p.m. and it’s also on Fox Sports 2 as Mexico takes on Canada. The final two games are on Fox Sports 1. At 6:00 p.m. Puerta Rico faces the Dominican Republic. The fourth and final game of the day has Team USA taking on Colombia and that game is scheduled to start at 9:00 p.m.

Out of the 20 teams in the World Baseball Classic only two are undefeated at this point. Team Japan is 4-0 while Team Venezuela is 3-0. There are also two teams that haven’t won a game yet. Team China and Team Nicaragua are both 0-4.

Ha-Seong Kim who’s playing for Team Korea has the most home runs in the World Baseball Classic right now with 3. Out of all the players who have more than 15 at bats Nicky Lopez of Team Italy has the best batting average as he’s 8 for 16 so far.

As for pitching Miguel Romero of Team Cuba has logged the most inning with 8 1/3 and has the most strikeouts with 12. Romero is tied with Jose Ruiz of Team Venezuela for the most wins with 2. There are 15 pitchers who haven’t given up a run yet and one of them is Shohei Otani who pitched 4 innings in his start for Team Japan.

So, I’m curious what your interest is in the World Baseball Classic. Have you been following it? Have you been watching full games? Or are you like me and you’re just watching a little bit of it here and there?

We went over the Trevor Bauer legal issues when he was going through them the past couple of seasons. While he was going through the legal process Bauer didn’t pitch last season and ended up being released by the Los Angeles Dodgers making him a free agent.

Bauer is a former Cy Young award winner and had been one of the better starting pitchers in Major League Baseball until he ran into his legal issues. Now to be fair Bauer was never actually arrested and no charges were ever filed against him for what that’s worth.

As a free agent the question became would a major league team take a chance on Bauer with the baggage, he might be bringing with him. Well, the answer turned out to be no, but Bauer has found somewhere to pitch this coming season as he looks to get back into Major League Baseball. Bauer signed a one-year $4 million dollar contract to pitch for the Yokohama DeNA BayStars of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball.

Now you might look at that $4 million dollar salary and think that’s a little low for a pitcher with Bauer’s resume, but don’t forget that he’s still owed a little over $23 million dollars by the Dodgers for the 2023 season.

It will be interesting to see how Bauer pitches in Japan and if this is a path to getting him back on a major league roster.

Don’t forget to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

  1. I wonder if Bauer, even if successful pitching in Japan, will ever pitch in the major leagues again?
    It’s tough enough to sit through a half an inning of a regular spring training game but it’s even worse to watch the WBC.
    I’m sure teams are quite reluctant to have their highly paid players participate in the games and will make sure they only play in a couple of innings or so.
    But, a week from Friday, the MLB season is finally here. (At least for the Cubs!)


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