National Team rosters were revealed for the fourth edition of the World Baseball Classic, which is set to take place across two continents from 6-22 March.
The top-tier international tournament, hosted by Major League Baseball (MLB) and the MLB Players Association, is sanctioned by WBSC as an official baseball world championship, with WBSC awarding 1,150 world ranking points to the winning nation.
Rosters can consist of a maximum of 28 players, with a minimum of 13 pitchers and 2 catchers.
The revealed rosters for the World Baseball Classic 2017 feature some of the biggest names in the sport.
World No. 13 Dominican Republic, the defending world champions, return nine players from their 2013 roster. MLB All-Stars Jose Bautista, Robinson Cano and Manny Machado will lead the team.
World No. 1 Japan, winner of the event in 2006 and 2009, features top stars from Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB), including former MVPs Tetsuto Yamada and Tomoyuki Sugano.
Former MLB MVPs Buster Posey and Andrew McCutchen — who both represented USA as teens in the U-18 Baseball World Cup — headline the roster of world No. 2 USA.
Inaugural PREMIER12 champions, world No. 3 Korea, will host Group A at the new Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul and will have plenty of Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) star power on their side. Won-Jun Chang and Hyun-Jong Yang, a pair of All-Star pitchers, along with current KBO batting champion Hyung-Woo Choi, are among the big names to follow on Korea’s roster.
Helping to lead their nations will be Australia pitcher Liam Hendriks, Canada first baseman Justin Morneau, China infielder Ray Chang, Chinese Taipei pitcher Chien-Ming Wang, Colombia pitcher Jose Quintana, Cuba infielder Alfredo Despaigne, Israel first baseman Ike Davis, Italy catcher Francisco Cervelli, Mexico superstar first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, Netherlands shortstop Xander Bogarts, Puerto Rico shortstop Francisco Lindor, and Venezuela second baseman Jose Altuve.
- Group A (6-10 March): Korea will welcome rival Chinese Taipei, Netherlands and first-time WBC participant Israel.
- Group B (7-11 March): Japan, Australia, China and Cuba will battle at the Tokyo Dome.
- Group C (9-13 March): Dominican Republic, home nation USA, Canada and WBC first-timer Colombia will converge at Marlins Park in Miami.
- Group D (9-13 March): Host Mexico, Italy, Puerto Rico and Venezuela will meet at Estadio de Béisbol Charros de Jalisco..
The top two teams from each group will advance to the Second Round and either play at the Tokyo Dome (12-16 March) or San Diego’s Petco Park (14-19 March). The Semi-Finals and Finals will take place at historic Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles from 20-22 March, where the IV World Baseball Classic world champion will be crowned.