Are you ready to experience the excitement of the 2023 World Baseball Classic? With the official rosters for all 20 teams being announced Thursday, now is the perfect time to get hyped for this international tournament. From Team USA captain Mike Trout to Team Dominican Republic pitcher Sandy Alcantara, this event is sure to be filled with some of the biggest stars in the game. In this blog post, we’ll give you a summary of what you need to know about the 2023 WBC.
The 2023 WBC, the fifth iteration of the international tournament, is set to get underway on March 8 and will run through March 21. This year’s tournament has been expanded from 16 to 20 teams, split into four pools of five teams each. Every team will play the other teams in its pool once, with the top two teams from each pool at the end of this round advancing to an eight-team, single-elimination stage. This will culminate with the championship game on March 21.
Here’s a look at the pool assignments: Pool A (contested from March 8-12) – Chinese Taipei, Cuba, Italy, Netherlands, and Panama; Pool B (contested from March 9-13) – Australia, China, Czech Republic, Japan, and South Korea; Pool C (contested from March 11-15) – Canada, Colombia, Great Britain, Mexico, and United States; and Pool D (contested from March 11-15) – Dominican Republic, Israel, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, and Venezuela.
Japan has won each of the first two World Baseball Classic titles, defeating Cuba in the 2006 final and South Korea in the 2009 final. The Dominican Republic ran the table in 2013, and the United States was crowned in 2017, with Puerto Rico again finishing as the runner-up.
Though rosters won’t be official until they’re announced, a long list of stars have committed to play in this year’s WBC, including Shohei Ohtani, Mike Trout, Mookie Betts, Nolan Arenado, Paul Goldschmidt, Trea Turner, Juan Soto, Manny Machado, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Sandy Alcantara, Francisco Lindor, Freddie Freeman and Jose Altuve.
So make sure to tune in to MLB Network Thursday at 6 p.m. ET for the official roster reveal and get ready for the 2023 WBC!