Monday, November 30, 2009

My take on the World Baseball Classic

Now that this season is over, it is important to look back and make changes that improve the game for players, fans, and all those involved. In recent years, the World Baseball Classic was implemented to connect the various baseball-playing countries across the globe. Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig has high hopes for the game and what it could do for the worldwide audience.

There are many implications connected to playing the World Baseball Classic and how it affects the regular season play of the athletes who participate. For the players in the United States, this tournament takes place before the season. Many of them have not had the opportunity to see enough live pitching and hitting to compete at the highest level of competition. By rushing the progression of their off season routine, these players are ill-prepared to succeed for the teams that are paying their salaries.

While I am intrigued by the idea of international competition in baseball, it is a difficult process to execute successfully. It is selfish to think that only players of the MLB will be affected. ANY player that participates from ANY country will need to be ready to compete in this tournament. It requires extra effort on top of what they are trying to do to make their respective teams better.

At this point in time, I don't know if the WBC will have any effect on baseball's fan base. On a personal note, I am far more interested in what Geovany Soto could offer the Cubs than how he plays against the United States team in the Classic. If national pride is the reward for winning the WBC, I'll pass seeing as we can barely convince Lebron James to lead the resurgence of the "Dream Team."

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