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  • Team EBSM

Europe Sends 5 to WBC

Team Italy's Alberto Mineo Photo By: Fredrik Bouw

The 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) will begin on Tuesday, March 7th with four pools of competition playing around the globe. At every location Europe will be represented.

The A-pool, which plays in Taichung, Taiwan between March 7 – 12th will host not one but two of Europe’s top teams. Both The Netherlands and Italy are competing for a spot in the quarter-finals. The Kingdom will start off the competition, taking on Cuba in the opening game of the 2023 WBC. They also close out the week when the European teams face off in the final game of the round robin competition. Cuba, Chinese Taipei and Panama will all be competing against them for a chance to advance.

Pool A - The Netherlands (Taichung)

March 7 v Cuba Win

March 8 v Panama

March 11 v Chinese Taipei

March 12 v Italy

Jurickson Profar Photo by Fredrik Bouw

Pool A – Italy (Taichung)

March 9 v Cuba

March 10 v Chinese Taipei

March 11 v Panama

March 12 v The Netherlands

Every pool advances the top two teams to the quarter-final round so it is possible that Europe could be the sole representation coming out of A pool come week’s end. It is also completely possible that their final game on the 12th has both countries fighting to avoid elimination.

Photo By: Drobny Photography

B-Pool is where the Czech Republic will compete. Japan’s Tokyo Dome will host this lone European representative as they take on most of Asia including host country Japan along with China, Korea and Australia.

Pool B – the Czech Republic (Tokyo)

March 9 v China

March 11 v Japan

March 11 v Korea

March 12 v Australia

The Czech Republic have a tough schedule with games roughly 13 hours apart on the 11th and then about 21 hours before their final game in the round begins. In Tokyo of course they will each be played on a different day but it may not feel that way with the time, and pressure, differences!

Photo By: Drobny Photography

In Phoenix, Chase Field will host Great Britain on March 11th as they fight for a chance to see both corners of America’s southern borders.

Pool C - Great Britain (Phoenix)

March 11 v USA

March 12 v Canada

March 13 v Colombia

March 14 v Mexico

This will be another tough fight for the Europeans. Not only are they competing against the home field advantage from USA, but Canada borders at the north, and Mexico at the south across the entirety of the country. Much closer, Mexico is a hop over the border from Arizona. It will not be surprising to see the stands filled in both Arizona and Miami should Mexico advance. This will require serious concentration from team GBR. With a roster made up of many dual-citizen players this may not be as serious a disadvantage as a roster filled with Britain’s regular season players might be. People who play in the USA are far more accustom to crowds at a game than are their brothers from across the pond. With the island territories of Britain sending over the remaining players they too will be used to spirited crowd play.

Team Israel at the 2020 Olympic Games Photo Provided by: Ryan Lavarnway

Competing in Pool D in Miami is Europe's 2020 Olympic Team. Team Israel's WBC first round games begin on March 12, 2023. They earned the right not to have to relocate for subsequent rounds of play by being the first European team to qualify for the Classic.

Pool D - Israel (Miami)

March 12 v Nicaragua

March 13 v Puerto Rico

March 14 v Dominican Republic

March 15 v Venezuela

This is the pool where North and South America collide. While team Israel’s bench will primarily contain dual citizens raised in the States, they’ll compete against American’s raised on the Island of Puerto Rico, as well as the Dominican Republic and Central America’s Nicaragua. Territory, Island or centrally located, all three share North America as their continent. All four countries will take on Venezuela, the pool's sole South American representative.

That’s five different teams to root for out of Europe all week long! Tap here to learn how to see the games in your local area.

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