Interesting that, at this late hour, Korean players are still threatening to boycott the WBC. See here:
Ok guys, it's confirmed. Just as I thought and always said, Spain was situated in San Juan, Puerto Rico (I knew MLB wasn't going to put a Spanish Team full of Cuban defectors in the same group as Cuba) whereas Canada was put in Phoenix. So, that leaves Brazil traveling to Fukuoka instead. Best regards!
Cool looking tix!
Update: I just checked my predictions. I thought MLB would try to smooth the way for Team USA by putting Spain in Phoenix. By putting Canada there, they've made it a bit more likely that we'll see an upset. And, with more major lragurrs playing in the field, that they'll sell more tickets.
Last edited by Rally Monkey; 11-29-2012 at 07:38 PM.
Bad news: According to reports out of Japan, WBC preliminary rosters--which had been set to be released next week--won't be due now until mid-January.
More blown deadlines. Shouldn't be a surprise.
UPDATE: Here's a report from Team Canada that sheds some light on why the roster deadline is being pushed back. Makes sense: Some free agents (like Ryan Dempster) don't know where they'll sign yet, and their new teams could put the kibosh on their participation. But we should be hearing some roster commitments next week during the Winter Meetings.
Last edited by Rally Monkey; 11-30-2012 at 06:56 PM.
As for the new IBAF rankings, they are confusing.
The IBAF post dated November 29 (yesterday) concerning newly updated rankings state they have been revised to reflect the September and November WBC Qualifiers, the Cuban team's trip through Taiwan and Japan this Fall, and the South American Championships won by Argentina.
Many team rankings have been updated.
However, for the First Place Team, Cuba, nothing has changed from September 21 through November 29 --- their total is exactly 766.02 points for both Sep 21 and Nov 29. Losses during their trip to Taiwan and Japan ? Doesn't matter ! ???
And now let's look at the Fifth Place Team, Canada, nothing has changed from September 21 through November 29 --- their total is exactly 485.00 points for both Sep 21 and Nov 29. Three consecutive lopsided victories at the Regensburg WBC Qualifier Pool ? Doesn't matter ! ???
So what is happening with Lausanne and the IBAF ? Don't know, but it's obvious that their rankings need to be double-checked before accepting them at face value.
If we assume these most recent IBAF rankings have validity, and I know this is a BIG IF for many who post here, and the decision is made to give some new nations a chance with a second round of qualifiers then the candidates for being added might include the following twelve teams --- # 22 Argentina, # 27 Pakistan, # 30 Croatia, # 32 Indonesia, # 33 Sweden, # 34 Hong Kong, # 35 Ecuador, # 36 Sri Lanka, # 37 Greece, # 38 Belgium, # 40 Honduras, # 41 Guam.
Or it may be decided to not have an additional round of qualifiers, but to replace some of the teams who did not win a game in 2012 --- Thailand, Nicaragua, France, Czech.
Addition of a second round of qualifiers could come in 2016 or in 2020. There are three and a half years to go before Fall 2016 WBC Qualifier decisions will be set in stone.
Like we kinda guessed at, Brazil once they won seemed like a good fit for Japan with some slight regional interest likely to exist. The Brazil games will do a little better then Spain games in Japan would have.
Phil, as I've written here countless times, the IBAF rankings are a joke. They should be ignored.
Japanese media is reporting the schedule for Samurai Japan in Pool A in Fukuoka.
Sat., March 2
Japan v. Brazil
Sun. March 3, 7 pm
Japan v. China
Wed. March 6, 7 pm
Japan v. Cuba
I'm guessing Cuba will play China in a March 2 doubleheader, Cuba will play Brazil on March 4, and Brazil will play China on March 5.
I just found this schedule on FIBS website (Italian)
Thu., March 7
Italy v. Mexico
Fri., March 8
Italy v. Canada
Sat., March 9
Italy v. USA
This might be what the rest of the Phoenix Schedule looks like:
Fri., March 8
USA v. Mexico
Sat., March 9
Mexico v. Canada
Sun., March 10
USA v. Canada
Last edited by NewEnglandAmazins; 12-01-2012 at 06:11 PM.
Good article. It confirms that the schedule will be announced on December 3, along with some of the names of players who've already committed to play. The preliminary 28 man rosters will be due on January 26, with a deadline of February 20 set for final rosters.
Any thoughts on this comment?
"This is still a young event" said WBC Inc President Paul Archey "We are having the third edition and we still work to make sure there will be a fourth. But we believe that the World Baseball Classic is a key to the development of the game internationally".
Football a player who plays division 2 spain or in some league in bulgaria would love to win a world cup. But a MLB player would rather win the world series or win minor league games to get to the majors.
I think it will take some time and some great interest from fans to the the WBC as a tournament worthy of the highest honors in baseballs.
There is no doubt that there are powerful baseball people against the event, many of them are owners. With Selig getting ready to step down and speculation that the next Commissioner may be a current owner, how would an Anti-WBC Commissioner undermine the WBC?
Going back now would be a slap in the face to the sport. I have no doubt they will see the profits from the expanded presence in Asia this time and not look back.
I'm thinking the big news out of today's WBC roster teaser announcement comes from Chinese Taipei. Chien-Ming Wang and Hong-Chih Kuo bring real star power. Looks like Taiwan isn't messing around this time.