Giants players invade the World Baseball Classic

Every October, American major league baseball teams battle it out to determine the World Series champion. But is the winner really a “world champion”?

As opposed to the World Series, the World Baseball Classic pits 16 teams of different nationalities against one another to determine the true world champion.

Since the sport of Olympic baseball was discontinued after the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, this tournament has achieved a higher status of importance as America sends its top players in the hopes to end Japan’s streak as two time champions.

Many American baseball fans ask why it seems that nobody cares, or even knows, about the World Baseball Classic. How is it possible that the country that invented the sport, loses more games than it wins?

One of the main reasons behind it are the different rules. For example, pitchers are only allowed to pitch for five innings and any games past the 13th inning begin with runners at second and first base.

Another reason is its unfortunate timing. For many Major League Baseball teams, the Classic happens during the same time as spring training, a crucial part of any pro-ballplayer’s season.

Senior Alex Crook said, “I, personally, am not that interested in the World Baseball Classic because there is no hype. I have never seen it on TV and have only seen a couple commercials for it. I think that the World Series is a lot more interesting to watch.

This year, Carlmont students and Bay Area baseball fans will have the opportunity to cheer on many of the same San Francisco Giants players that won this years World Series.

So far, at least eight Giants players will represent various teams in the classic. They include Jeremy Affeldt and Ryan Vogelsong for the United States, Marco Scutaro for Venezuela, Angel Pagan for Puerto Rico, Santiago Casilla for the Dominican Republic, Sergio Romo for Mexico, and Tyler LaTorre for Italy.

Jose Mijares injured his elbow and it is questionable whether he will heal in time to play for Venezuela.

Hensley Meulens will also manage the Netherlands.

Senior Vincent Leopardo said, “I prefer watching the World Baseball Classic over the World Series because it’s international, so it’s more important, that and my favorite player is Angel Pagan who plays for Puerto Rico.”

“Probably almost every game you turn on is going to have somebody from the Giants,” left-hander Eric Surkamp of the Giants said to

Whether one’s team is well represented or not, the general fan experience of the tournament has been on a completely different level than what the average fan is used to.  With an abundance of cultural pride and exuberance for the game, the World Baseball Classic has given the United States a taste of the rest of the worlds passion for sporting events.