By: Chandler Ragsdale
2017 WBC: Team USA
This years World Baseball Classic is shaping up to be definitely what its name suggests, a classic. The sixteen best teams from all over the world will be competing and trying to take back to their country a title. Israel has surprised a lot so far with their 3-0 start, and the defending champion Dominican team looks like they are poised to make a run at repeating. With all of this being said, we want to know, where does our beloved Team USA fit into this great baseball tournament?
The roster that has been assembled for the USA seems to be a very good one. They can be very confident in the arms that they’ll have pitching. Young studs Chris Archer (TB) and Marcus Stroman (TOR) can both provide good starts for a ball club on any given day. Not to mention they have now probably one of the most valued arms in baseball in Andrew Miller (CLE) on the roster. The bats that this team has aren’t too bad either. Fellow Buccos Josh Harrison and Andrew McCutchen (PIT) will be playing for team USA, along with Nolan Arenado (COL), Johnathan Lucroy (TEX), and Paul Goldschmidt (ARI), just to name a few. To put it short, this team shouldn’t be lacking in one particular area, but rather they seem very well-rounded.
As for who they’ll be playing, Team USA has found themselves in Pool C with Canada, the Dominican Republic, and who they’re competing against first, Colombia. This pool looks pretty strong, so the Americans will definitely have to come out swinging if they want to have a chance of even making it out of pool play. I give Team USA the edge over Colombia and Canada, so I believe they can make it out of pool play. However, I don’t seem them beating the Dominicans. The USA may have a slight edge when it comes to pitching, but the Dominicans have a lineup that knows how to hit great pitching. They have Jose Bautista (TOR), Manny Machado (BAL), Robinson Cano (SEA), Hanley Ramirez (BOS), and many more. Overall, I see the Americans getting out of pool play, but eventually falling before the championship.