Hello, all. Today is a work holiday for some of you and not a work holiday for others (including myself) but tomorrow is the big feature. And I will use the backdrop of a patriotic American holiday to (once again) dig out one of my favorite pastimes—creating a dream Team USA baseball team.
I think I did this last year. I think I did it during the World Baseball Classic. It’s silly that I keep doing this but I enjoy it so I’m going to do so. So here is my 25-man roster for a truly meaningful international tournament for the United States. Although players are not tied to nationality as strictly as in international soccer or hockey, I kept eligibility logical—I stuck with players born in the United States who have not played for another country in the WBC (hence players like Anthony Rizzo and Manny Machado are not a part of it) and I excluded players from Puerto Rico, as the territory has typically had its own national team in baseball and other sports. I assume that a designated hitter would be implemented here, but even if not, just assume the roster remains the same. Also I disregarded current injuries, though gave some consideration to how I predict those injuries will affect the players going forward. I largely consulted ZiPS and Steamer rest-of-season projections so if I missed somebody, blame them and do not hold me responsible for anything I ever do or say.
So here it goes:
- Paul Goldschmidt, first base, Arizona Diamondbacks
- Mike Trout, center field, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
- Josh Donaldson, third base, Toronto Blue Jays
- Bryce Harper, left field, Washington Nationals
- Kris Bryant, designated hitter, Chicago Cubs
- Mookie Betts, right field, Boston Red Sox
- Buster Posey, catcher, San Francisco Giants
- Corey Seager, shortstop, Los Angeles Dodgers
- Brian Dozier, second base, Minnesota Twins
Jonathan Lucroy, catcher, Texas Rangers
Trea Turner, second base/shortstop/center field, Washington Nationals
Lorenzo Cain, center field, Kansas City Royals
Aaron Judge, right field, New York Yankees
Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers
Chris Sale, Boston Red Sox
Max Scherzer, Washington Nationals
Corey Kluber, Cleveland Indians
Dellin Betances, New York Yankees
Wade Davis, Chicago Cubs
Craig Kimbrel, Boston Red Sox
Andrew Miller, Cleveland Indians
Chris Archer, Tampa Bay Rays
Madison Bumgarner, San Francisco Giants
Stephen Strasburg, Washington Nationals
Noah Syndergaard, New York Mets
Anyway, here’s the part where I actually do my job and tell you about the actual, relevant to the Cardinals VEB posts of the weekend.
- Ben Markham wrote a terrifying piece about how Statcast is taking over the world and how we are all going to be overthrown by hyper-intelligent robots and such. Be sure to phrase it this way when discussing it at barbecues and firework displays over the next couple days.
- The red baron wrote about the Cardinals are a team with solid options at most spots and therefore it will be difficult for the Cardinals to substantially improve their roster with a move or two.
- The Cardinals played the Washington Nationals over the weekend. Saturday’s game was a 2-1 victory recapped by IHeartBoog. Sunday brought us the highly anticipated match-up between aforementioned All-American Max Scherzer and Carlos Martinez, a game which was recapped by VanHicklestein.