Projected Team USA

Batting Order

OF Mike Trout: The rookie sensation took the MLB by storm this year finishing 2nd in MVP voting in his first full year. He hit an astounding 30HR while having an average of .326. Oh, and he stole 49 bases. Also is one of the best defensive CF in the league already.

2B Brandon Phillips: One of the flashiest players in the league. Is known for his defense but is also very good at the top of the Reds lineup hitting .281 with 18HR, and 77RBI

OF Matt Kemp: Yet another MVP candidate on this squad. In a shortened year he hit .303 with 23HR and 68RBI. Will most likely have a corner outfield position with this team.

OF Ryan Braun: Last year’s MVP had another great year in Milwaukee where he hit 41HR and 112RBI. He also won his 5th straight Silver Slugger. He hit .381 over 6 games in the 2009 WBC.

C Buster Posey: The Giants catcher had a giant season hitting 336 with 24HR and 103RBI while winning the MVP. Also, a very good defensive catcher that will help out the pitching staff. One of the best all-around players in baseball today.

1B Mark Teixeira: Yet another gold glove season for Tex. However, he had a little bit of a regression only hitting for a .251 average and 24HR. He is a switch hitter with power and great defense and has represented the US in the past so he should be manning 1B come March.

DH Gioncarlo Stanton: The power hitting outfielder had a career high .290 average while hitting 37HR and 86RBI. He is a below average fielder so he will probably hit DH for the powerful Americans. He can take it out of the park on any given pitch.

3B David Wright: Another solid year for the Mets franchise player. He batted .306 and tallied 93RBIs. Wright is also a good defender at the hot corner and has played for the US In the past.

SS Ian Desmond: A breakout season for the young shortstop He hit .292 with 25HR and 73RBI while also swiping 21 bags. With Jeter injured he should be ready to take the reins.
Pitching

SP Justin Verlander:Not much you can say about him other than he’s a stud. He can throw for days and gets better as he goes. With the WBCs pitch count he can go all out for all 85 pitches he has. This year with the Tigers he went 17-8 with a 2.64ERA.

SP David Price: A dominating lefty that throws in the high 90s. Won his first career Cy Young by going 20-5 with a 2.56ERA with the Tampa Bay Rays.

SP Clayton Kershaw:Another good year in LA for Kershaw where he went 14-9 with a 2.53ERA.

RP Craig Kimbrel:116 strikeouts in 62.2 innings. ‘Nough said. He also had a miniscule 1.01 ERA while saving 42 games.

RP Chris Sale: With the pitch count in place it is important to have some starters that can come out of the bullpen. Sale has experience doing that although as a starter this year he went 17-8 with 3.05ERA. He can also come in and face a lefty in a jam.

RP Ryan Vogelsong:  Will be used as a mid-relief guy who can pitch the mid innings if a starter doesn’t last. He went 14-9 with the Giants this season. Also has big game experience from pitching in the World Series this year.

RP David Robertson:A solid 7th inning guy for this team. Had a 2.67ERA with the Yankees this season. Always dependable.

RP Jim Johnson: Had a breakout year with the Orioles where he saved 51 games while maintaining a 2.49ERA. He only blew 3 saves all year. Could be used as the set-up man to Kimbrel.

RP Darren Oliver:The old man still has it. He posted a 2.06ERA this season with the Blue Jays. He could use this as somewhat of a farewell tour. Will be used only in one batter situations against lefties.

RP Sergio Romo: A fan favourite with the Giants posted a 1.79ERA with 23holds and 14 saves. He could be a 7th inning guy or be used to get a double play with his dirty slider.

Bench

C Joe Mauer: .319AVG, 10HR, 85RBI with the Minnesota Twins

2B Dustin Pedroia:.290AVG, 15HR, 65RBI with the Boston Red Sox

OF Bryce Harper: .270AVG, 22HR, 59RBI with the Washington Nationals

OF Curtis Granderson: .232AVG, 43HR, 106RBI with the New York Yankees

1B/3B Kevin Youkilis:.235AVG, 19HR, 60RBI with the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox

UTIL Ben Zobrist: .220AVG, 20HR, 74RBI with the Tampa Bay Rays

Hopefuls

To name a few… Derek Jeter, Troy Tulowitzki,  Evan Longoria, Prince Fielder, Andrew McCutchen, Ian Kinsler, Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee and many more.
Projection

USA has yet another dream team. There are so many all-star caliber players to choose from that even If none of the listed players play, they could still field a team good enough to win. However, the game is not played on paper and that is why the Americans have yet to advance past the semifinals in the previous two tournaments.  USA will most likely be placed in a group with Mexico, Canada and Italy so they should be able to easily advance to the second stage. Once there, they will need their pitching to step up and win them games. Their second round pool will consist of the top 2 teams out of Venezuela, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic and Brazil. USA will get to play every game on home soil which could give them an edge.  Look for the Americans to be contending for a World Title by the end of the tournament.

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