Edwin Diaz Injury Proves That WBC Change Needs Be Made
The Edwin Diaz injury proves there needs to be a change made to the World Baseball Classic going forward.
Now, of course, it’s not to blame the tournament itself – it’s rather the timing of it all.
The WBC is happening while MLB spring training is ongoing and some players have opted not to play in the WBC and focus on solely getting ready with the team in 2023.
It makes sense to have some kind of pre-season to get players back in the mold of playing games after months of not.
But the WBC happens only every four years – and some players want to play in it as it might only be a once-in-a-lifetime chance for them to showcase their skills to the world.
The issue is players are going to give everything they have to try and win the trophy for their country. The best players are going to play hard for nine innings – and their bodies just may not be ready for that.
Spring training is good to see where top prospects are in addition to getting them and everyone else ready for game shape. Often times in spring training games, MLB players will play half the game to start off.
The games are essentially meaningless for qualifying for the postseason but they prepare players for the regular season.
And freak injuries do happen in all sports on occasion including even in spring training – but you wonder if Diaz’s injury could have been avoided if the WBC was played at a different time in the year.
For example, former WFAN sports radio host Joe Benigno, who happens to be a lifelong suffering New York Mets fan, made the argument on his Oh The Pain Podcast that the WBC should be played in July.
“Cut the year down to about 140 games, scrap the freaking all-star game for that year because nobody gives a damn about that either,” he said.
Further adding, “You take two weeks or two and half weeks and you play the WBC in July.”
And Benigno argued that more fans in the United States would care about the tournament if it’s done that way.
Others would argue that the WBC should happen after the MLB season ends.
Either way, are serious injuries still completely avoidable? No, but at least every day players will be trained for it.
But instead, Diaz, the best closer in baseball, is likely out for the entire season after an MRI revealed a torn patellar tendon in his knee after celebrating a big win.
Again, it’s not to blame the players for deciding to play in it – but to criticize when it’s played.
The WBC is run by the MLB and Player Association and you have to wonder if the Diaz injury will spark a change.
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