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.
The Red Sox and Mariners left nothing on the table Friday night, going head-to-head in a series opener that eventually ended 14-10 in the Sox’ favor. Led by Steven Wright and Wade LeBlanc — neither of whom made it past the fifth inning — the teams combined for 34 hits and four home runs, including two moonshots from Seattle’s Nelson Cruz and a five-run rally that gave Boston the edge in the seventh.
In the sixth inning, however, the Red Sox were still scrambling to make up a four-run deficit. Left fielder J.D. Martinez cut it in half with one swing, pouncing on an 89.5-mph fastball from Seattle right-hander Nick Vincent and posting it to dead center field for a two-run shot.
The 427-foot blast was Martinez’s 23rd of the season, tying Mike Trout for the most home runs in the league this year. While he still has a ways to go before eclipsing the career-best 45-HR mark he set in 2017, he’s off to a strong start this season: Entering Friday’s game, the 30-year-old slugger was batting .315/.386/.623 with a 1.009 OPS and AL-leading 55 RBI in 308 PA. He finished Friday’s game 4-for-5 with five RBI, just one triple shy of hitting for the cycle.
Heading into the All-Star Break, both Martinez and Trout still have some competition for the home run title. Jose Ramirez is sitting at 22 homers, while Nelson Cruz and Khris Davis are tied at 20 apiece.