The Diamondbacks had 4 guys from their 40-man roster compete in the 2023 World Baseball Classic: SP Merrill Kelly, 2B Ketel Marte, IF Emmanuel Rivera, and OF Alek Thomas. Here is how they performed…
SP Merrill Kelly: USA
Kelly has only pitched 3 innings thus far in the world baseball classic. But you want to hear some exciting news? Merrill Kelly gets the ball to start the WBC championship game against Japan tonight! Talk about a tall task!
Being trusted to start any championship game is cool, but having the opportunity to start in the WBC championship game for your country is something Merrill will never forget. In Kelly’s 3 innings of WBC work, he has given up 4 hits, 2 earned runs, and he has struck out 1 batter. Those numbers aren’t terrific, but if he has a solid outing tonight, he would be a hero in the eyes of all USA fans forever…
2B Ketel Marte: Dominican Republic
Unfortunately, Ketel did not get to see the field as much as he probably hoped he would for the WBC. In 8 at-bats, Ketel recorded 2 hits including an RBI double against Israel. Now that the WBC is over for him, he can spend this week and next week getting ready for the Diamondbacks season that is quickly approaching.
IF Emmanuel Rivera: Puerto Rico
Rivera enjoyed a solid stint in the WBC. In 18 at-bats, Rivera racked up 5 hits and 5 RBIs. One of those hits was even a triple! On a team led by shortstops Francisco Lindor and Javier Baez, Rivera held his own and was just as productive. Rivera will likely come off the bench for the Diamondbacks in 23’, but if he continues his production, he could see more playing time in the near future.
OF Alek Thomas: Mexico
Without beating around the bush, Thomas did not have a great WBC at the plate. He slashed .200/.273/.200 in 6 games with Mexico. Despite not hitting the best, he did swipe 2 bags and he scored 6 times. He also made some nice plays in center field, including a nice running catch that took away an extra-base hit. Overall, Thomas played just fine in his first-ever WBC, but he still needs to hit the batting cages, because it'll be a long season in the desert if he can’t get on base 30% of the time.