It begins today, with Korea playing Chinese Taipei at 6:30ET on ESPN. I don't expect much from this particular game, but I must admit that I'm fairly interested in the World Baseball Classic. Teams to watch?
- Well, the U.S. of course.Â As much as I really don't like Roger Clemens, he's an amazing athlete and has still got it.Â Lots of good relief pitching on the American squad too.
- The Dominican Republic will be fielding an epic team of hitters, many of the best in the major leagues.Â Soriano, Pujols, Tejada, Ortiz, Alou.Â Sadly, Vlad Guerrero has stepped out because of a family tragedy, and won't be playing.Â Their pitching isn't bad either, with Colon and Cabrera.
- I think the most exciting first round matchup?Â Between Venezuela and the Dominican Republic.
- I'm also interested in watching Japan: there is a significant history of baseball in Japan, and I'd like to see what some of Ichiro's countrymen could pull off in this tournament.Â I pick them to advance in their bracket.
In Cactus League play, my home town Athletics go up against the Cubs.
Damn, I love this time of year.