Mike Trout may not be on the field for the Midsummer Classic on Tuesday, but he will lead his country in another Classic next year.
“I'm looking forward to playing for our country,” he said. “It means a lot to me and my family to represent our country. It's going to be awesome to have 'USA' across my chest. It really means a lot to me. It's going to be fun.”
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Trout, a three-time AL MVP, did not play in the last World Baseball Classic, which took place in 2017. The U.S. won that event with an 8-0 victory over Puerto Rico at the same ballpark where Tuesday’s MLB All-Star Game will be played, Dodger Stadium.
Trout was named a 2022 AL All-Star starter, but he will not participate in the game after being placed on the 10-day injured list on Monday due to left ribcage inflammation. He missed the Angels’ last four games before the All-Star break and will be eligible to return for the team’s matchup against the Atlanta Braves on Saturday.
The World Baseball Classic was initially slated for 2021 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Team USA is part of Pool C for the 2023 event with Canada, Colombia and Mexico. Pool C games will be played at Chase Field in Phoenix next spring from March 11-15. Should Team USA make it out of pool play, its remaining games would be set for LoanDepot Park in Miami.
Trout is the only American player confirmed for the event so far.