1/14 Rizzo to play for Italy
Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo will play for Team Italy in the World Baseball Classic. The Classic rosters will be officially released on Thursday but Rizzo confirmed on Monday that he will join the Italian team.
Italy will open the Classic March 7 against Mexico, playing in Scottsdale, Ariz., and be in the same bracket as Team Canada and the U.S. squad.
Shortstop Starlin Castro reportedly told media in the Dominican Republic that he was going to play for that team in the Classic, but the Cubs have not confirmed that.
The Cubs have had players participate in the World Baseball Classic in the past. In 2006, Michael Barrett and Derrek Lee played for Team USA, and Henry Blanco and Carlos Zambrano played for Venezuela. In 2009, Kosuke Fukudome played for the Japanese team, Ted Lilly pitched for Team USA, Alex Maestri pitched for the Italian squad, Carlos Marmol played for the Dominican team, Vince Perkins pitched for Team Canada, and Geovany Soto played for Puerto Rico.
– Carrie Muskat