Cubs IF Trey Mancini Skips World Baseball Classic Appears on NBC Sports Chicago
Chicago Cubs infielder Trey Mancini was originally signed to play for the Italian team in the upcoming World Baseball Classic, but after signing with the North Siders, he will report to spring training in Arizona and focus on getting to know the his new sports team.
Mancini, who signed a two-year contract with the Cubs earlier this month, said he expects he will be needed to serve as a veteran presence at the club, and that starting a relationship with Mesa will – is the key to doing the job.
“We thought it would be good for me to be with the team full time,” he told reporters during Monday’s opening press conference. “Especially since I’m going to be kind of a veteran presence in the clubhouse. I’d rather be out there all spring and get to know those guys and be out there. “
Mancini, who will play first base in some outfield for the Cubs in the 2023 season, is looking to bounce back after a tough stint with the Houston Astros. Acquired at the trade deadline, Mancini hit just .176 with eight home runs and 22 RBI, and 49 hitouts in 165 at-bats for the eventual world champions.
He went 1-for-9 with four hits in the World Series, which the Astros captured in six games against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Now, Mancini will get to know his new team in Arizona as Italy prepares for the World Baseball Classic, an event delayed for two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Italian team, coached by the legendary Mike Piazza, has been placed in Pool A for the tournament, which means that their opening match will be in Taiwan in early March. The team was rounded out by Chinese Taipei, Cuba, the Netherlands and Panama.
Cubs player Marcus Stroman will suit up for Puerto Rico in the tournament after winning MVP honors on the title-winning US team in 2017, while outfielder Seiya Suzuki will join the Japanese team assembled in the event.
Japan will host games at the Tokyo Dome in the first round, and the second round of games will be there against clubs from Pool A. The Puerto Rico team will play their opening game at Miami’s LoanDepot Park, in the second round. Games are also scheduled to take place in Florida.
The Cubs will play an exhibition game against WBC Canada on Wednesday, March 8 at Sloan Park. The Pool C games will take place at Phoenix’s Chase Field, as the United States team plays its opening game there.
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