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Here We Go Again

Ross Newhan -Premium Content

The second World Baseball Classic, the global showcase that ultimately received plaudits from inaugural cynics in 2006, will begin in March with Japan trying to repeat as champion and the U.S. seeking redemption for its early elimination. If redemption seems an overstatement considering U.S. players are still in the early to mid-phase of spring training with the goal of winning the World Series as opposed to the World Classic, manager Davey Johnson says the "sour taste" of '06 should provide motivation amid favorable changes in the format.

International | #2009#International Affairs#World Baseball Classic

World Baseball Classic Notebook

John Manuel -

Top 10 World Baseball Classic Prospects. Though just two ended up playing for the title, it was the inclusion of big leaguers that made the World Baseball Classic such an enormous event. However, like international baseball events of the past, prospects still got a chance to shine. Three prospects who raised their profile as much as anyone at the Classic were Italy's Tony Giarratano, Australia's Brad Harman and Taiwan's Chin-Lung Hu.

International | #2006#International Affairs#World Baseball Classic

Grilli Fries Aussie Bats As Italy Rolls

Matt Meyers -

When the San Francisco Giants made Jason Grilli the fourth overall pick in 1997, it was with the expectation that he would be a front-of-the-rotation starter in the big leagues. While that has yet to happen, he dominated like one tonight as Italy enforced the mercy rule against Australia with 10-0 victory in seven innings behind dominant pitching from Grilli and Riccardo De Santis, and some powerful hitting from Mark Saccomano and Vince Sinisi.

International | #2006#International Affairs#World Baseball Classic

USA Earns Quick, Close Win Against Mexico

Alan Schwarz -

The Chase Field crowd of 32,727 that saw the United States' 2-0 win over Mexico the World Baseball Classic Pool B opener Tuesday afternoon sounded split just about evenly between the two clubs, with the consistently louder half rooting for Mexico. To those fans all Americans are Yankees—and, when wearing uniforms between foul lines, just as despised as those from the Bronx.

International | #2006#International Affairs#World Baseball Classic