The World Baseball Classic has brought us some incredible highs, some delightful laughs, and now it has brought us some deep lows. As Puerto Rico crushed the Dominican Republic to advance to the next round, the team gathered in triumph, but it soon ended in sadness as closer Edwin Diaz tore a tendon while celebrating with his team.
The Mets prized closer will be out for the 2023 season, which is causing many to wonder if the Diaz injury (and more minor injuries to other players) might be more risk than reward when it comes to the WBC. Can teams risk losing their major stars before the season even begins?
Many are arguing the WBC is too important and too much of a spotlight on international baseball to be derailed by injury, so it’s leading to some interesting discussion, which will be the first set of links today.
Let’s get into the links!
- Not sure where “celebrating so hard I tore a tendon” ranks in terms of bad baseball injuries, but here we are.
New York Mets closer Edwin Díaz tore the patellar tendon in his right knee during the celebration after Puerto Rico’s WBC victory against the Dominican Republic. He will need surgery and is expected to miss the season.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 16, 2023
- Everyone thought this was team Dominican Republic’s WBC to lose, but Puerto Rico took them down. Unfortunately, a celebration took part of the PR down as well. Story by Jon Tayler.
- Michael Baumann digs into the Diaz injury and what it might mean for international events like the WBC going forward.
- Emma Baccellieri looks at the Diaz injury in terms of a worst-case scenario for the WBC.
- But Tom Verducci says we shouldn’t turn off the WBC because of injuries like this.
- Brittany Ghiroli agrees, saying not to blame the WBC for injuries like Diaz’s. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- Will Leitch brings us the six storylines to watch for in the World Baseball Classic going forward.
- Shohei Ohtani throws 102 and leads Japan to victory over Italy. (AP)
- Ben Clemens does the math on team options because he loves math.
- Mike Petriello picks a few sub .500 teams who might turn things around and make the postseason this year.
- Tomorrow’s legends tell us who inspired them.
Legends of the game come from all across the globe.— World Baseball Classic (@WBCBaseball) March 17, 2023
If you could dream...who would be on your team? pic.twitter.com/jlCFqJNLU3
- Kiri Oler looks at the new season rule changes from a game design perspective.
- Sergio Romo is headed back to the Bay and will retire a Giant. Story by Molly Burkhardt.
- Jim Callis and Sam Dkystra pick the prospects with the best fastballs in baseball.
- Kiley McDaniel brings us 50 prospects to keep an eye on for breakout seasons in 2023.
- Pitchers won’t be the only ones subject to sticky substance checks, as catchers will soon be required to share their belts and hands with umpires. Story by Tom Verducci.
- Jayson Stark brings us player reaction to the new sticky stuff precautions. (The Athletic subscription required.)
- After 30 years the Saint Paul Saints will have new ownership. Story by Brooks Johnson.
- Roger Lansing looks at the Larry Kalas donation to the Baseball Hall of Fame that will help preserve baseball moments for eternity.
- Stephanie Apstein looks at the perks of being with the Yankees, but in-flight Wi-Fi isn’t one of them.
- What an incredible vibe.
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster. Make it so.