One Phillies pitcher will join Team USA, while four represent Venezuela
The final rosters for the World Baseball Classic were announced Wednesday evening, and the Phillies have a strong contingent.
Ten Phillies will represent seven countries when the tournament begins in March, including several young prospects. Six of the players are projected to be on Philadelphia’s opening day roster in less than two months time.
Here’s the list of players representing not just their country, but Philadelphia and the entire Phils organization.
Pat Neshek – USA
Hector Neris – Dominican Republic
Freddy Galvis – Venezuela
Odubel Herrera – Venezuela
Jeanmar Gomez – Venezuela
Edubray Ramos – Venezuela
Nick Pivetta – Canada
Jorge Alfaro – Columbia
Kenny Koplove – Israel
Nick Fanti – Italy
A majority of the names representing Philadelphia are well known to the everyday fan. Ramos, Pivetta, and Alfaro are three highly-touted prospects in the organization, and could each make an appearance at Citizens Bank Park next season.
Koplove is a Philadelphia native who pitched for Penn Charter High School before being drafted in the 17th round of the 2015 MLB Draft. In 49 games between Williamsport and Lakewood the 23-year-old has a 6.25 ERA as a reliever.
Fanti was drafted in the same class as Koplove, just 13 rounds later. Originally from New York, the young lefty had an outstanding season for the Gulf League club last year. Over nine starts he won seven games with a 1.57 ERA and 65 strikeouts.
With Freddy Galvis due to miss time with the team in spring training, top prospect J.P. Crawford has a unique opportunity to establish himself with the major league club.
The tournament runs from March 6-22, with the United States team playing in Miami. Fanti will travel with the Israeli team to play the first round of his team pool in Seoul, South Korea. The players representing Venezuela and Italy will begin the tournament in Jalisco, Mexico.
The championship round will be held in Los Angeles beginning on March 20.