Rosters for the World Baseball Classic have been released, including the USA team that is looking to defend its 2017 championship.
The 2023 edition features several familiar faces, including the likes of Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado. But it’s the new faces that are particularly impressive. Mike Trout is joining Team USA, as are Mookie Betts and Tim Anderson among position players.
As far as pitchers go, Clayton Kershaw and Lance Lynn headline a staff that, while less impressive than the USA in the field, should be among the better pitching staffs at the World Baseball Classic.
There are also some exciting up-and-comers playing for the USA this year. Bobby Witt Jr. is coming off his rookie season with the Royals and will play, not to mention Anderson. It’s a very different look than the United States’ last major international appearance at the 2021 Olympics in Tokyo, which largely featured minor league players. But there is still youth on this roster, with 10 players under age 30.
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USA World Baseball Classic 2023 roster
Team USA has 30 players on its WBC roster, half of them pitchers.
While the highlights are, of course, Trout and Betts, there is plenty of star power to go around. J.T. Realmuto is behind the plate, Kyle Tucker is joining them in the outfield, and NL MVP Goldschmidt is returning to the fold.
|Jason Adam||Tampa Bay Rays||R|
|Daniel Bard||Colorado Rockies||R|
|David Bednar||Pittsburgh Pirates||R|
|Kyle Freeland||Colorado Rockies||L|
|Kendall Graveman||Chicago White Sox||R|
|Merrill Kelly||Arizona Diamondbacks||R|
|Clayton Kershaw||Los Angeles Dodgers||L|
|Lance Lynn||Chicago White Sox||R|
|Miles Mikolas||St. Louis Cardinals||R|
|Adam Ottavino||New York Mets||R|
|Ryan Pressly||Houston Astros||R|
|Brooks Raley||New York Mets||L|
|Brady Singer||Kansas City Royals||R|
|Adam Wainwright||St. Louis Cardinals||R|
|Devin Williams||Milwaukee Brewers||R|
|Kyle Higashioka||New York Yankees||R/R|
|J.T. Realmuto||Philadelphia Phillies||R/R|
|Will Smith||Los Angeles Dodgers||R/R|
|Pete Alonso||New York Mets||1B||R/R|
|Tim Anderson||Chicago White Sox||SS||R/R|
|Nolan Arenado||St. Louis Cardinals||3B||R/R|
|Paul Goldschmidt||St. Louis Cardinals||1B||R/R|
|Jeff McNeil||New York Mets||UTIL||R/R|
|Trea Turner||Philadelphia Phillies||SS||R/R|
|Bobby Witt Jr.||Kansas City Royals||SS||R/R|
|Mookie Betts||Los Angeles Dodgers||RF||R/R|
|Cedric Mullins||Baltimore Orioles||CF||L/L|
|Kyle Schwarber||Philadelphia Phillies||LF||L/R|
|Mike Trout||Los Angeles Angels||CF||R/R|
|Kyle Tucker||Houston Astros||RF||L/R|
USA players to watch in World Baseball Classic
This will be Mike Trout’s first World Baseball Classic, and the player widely regarded as one of the most talented ever will look to make an immediate impact. He joins a loaded outfield that includes Mookie Betts, Kyle Tucker, and Kyle Schwarber.
In the infield, Bobby Witt Jr. is one of the most intriguing players given his youth and how highly-touted he was as a prospect. Newly-minted $100 million-man Trea Turner is representing the Phillies for the first time, and Cardinals fans will be treated to all-time fielder Nolan Arenado and 2022 NL MVP Paul Goldschmidt in the infield.
On the pitching staff, Clayton Kershaw and Lance Lynn are the headliners, alongside Devin Williams and Kendall Graveman out of the bullpen.
MORE: World Baseball Classic 2023: MLB team-by-team roster breakdown
Who is coaching Team USA in the World Baseball Classic?
Former major league player Mark DeRosa will be in the dugout for Team USA as the manager.
DeRosa, who debuted in 1998 and played until 2013, has been a longtime analyst for MLB Network.
DeRosa knows the weight the WBC carries.
“I had a chance as a player to play in Venezuela, and I know the passion in that country,” he recently told The Sporting News’ Ryan Fagan. “For those guys to get together and try to win a title is huge. I understand for Japan and Cuba how much this means. I think their passion has kind of elevated this thing to where now the U.S. player is not only wanting to play, but also, ‘Let’s go get it.’ I think in 2017, with Jim Leyland and what that team was able to do, has definitely opened some eyes.”
DeRosa’s role is an analyst, and he isn’t bringing the managerial experience Leyland brought to the championship-winning team in 2017. So this is going to be an interesting dynamic.
Make no mistake, however. DeRosa has a loaded coaching staff around him. Andy Pettitte will be the pitching coach, Ken Griffey Jr. is the hitting coach, Lou Collier is coaching first, Dino Ebel is at third, and Dave Righetti is in the bullpen. Jerry Manuel and Brian McCann will be bench coaches.
USA World Baseball Classic history
The United States has competed in all five World Baseball Classics to date: 2006, 2009, 2013, 2017, and now 2023.
The United States have made it to at least the semifinals twice, including a championship win in 2017. It has never been eliminated in pool play.
|2006||Eliminated in second round||2-1 loss to Mexico|
|2009||Fourth place||9-4 loss to Japan|
|2013||Eliminated in second round||4-3 loss to Puerto Rico|
|2017||Won Championship||8-0 win over Puerto Rico|
USA World Baseball Classic 2023 schedule
Team USA will be playing in Pool C, alongside Mexico, Colombia, Canada, and Great Britain.
Its World Baseball Classic will commence on March 11 at 10 p.m. ET against Great Britain, as it looks to defend its title.
Pool play will wrap up on March 15 against Colombia.
The United States will play this round at Chase Field in Phoenix. It needs to finish first or second to advance to the quarterfinals.
|March 11||Great Britain vs. USA||10 p.m.||Fox|
|March 12||Mexico vs. USA||10 p.m.||FS1|
|March 13||Canada vs. USA||10 p.m.||FS1|
|March 15||USA vs. Colombia||10 p.m.||FS1|