A bit of World Baseball Classic roster news.
CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton has informed Team USA officials that he plans to participate in the 2013 WBC. Angels outfielder Mike Trout has bowed out of the competition, meanwhile, according to Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times.
Stanton, 23, batted .290/.361/.608 with 37 home runs and 86 RBI in 123 games last season for the Marlins. He’s another excellent addition to a USA lineup that already boasts David Wright, Adam Jones, Ryan Braun, Joe Mauer and Brandon Phillips.
Trout probably wants to ease into action this spring after the longest baseball season of his life.
Full rosters for the World Baseball Classic should be made available within the next couple of weeks.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.