Polar Bear set to represent USA in next World Baseball Classic

August 17th, 2022

He already has two Home Run Derby crowns and his team is one of the favorites to win the World Series, but Mets slugger is already thinking about another competition he’d like to win: the World Baseball Classic. On Wednesday, Alonso announced his interest in playing for the United States in the next Classic.

"I'm really excited. It's an honor to be a part of Team USA," Alonso said. "There's a lot of really amazing guys on the team so far. It's a great opportunity, and I just feel lucky to be a part of it. ... It's an incredibly fun event. I've always wanted to play in it. It's an honor to play for the stars and stripes."

Though the official roster announcements won’t be made until the offseason, you can see why Team USA would benefit from Alonso’s presence in the lineup. His 29 home runs are tied with the D-backs' Christian Walker and the Cardinals' Paul Goldschmidt -- who played for Team USA in 2017 -- for the Major League lead among first basemen, and his 135 home runs since debuting in 2019 are the most among big league hitters.

Alonso’s announcement comes after Mike Trout (captain), Bryce Harper, Nolan Arenado, J.T. Realmuto, Trevor Story and Goldschmidt have expressed their interest to play for Team USA. The stars will be hoping to lead the U.S. to another victory after Team USA defeated Puerto Rico to win the 2017 WBC -- the first victory in the tournament by the U.S.

"Guys have for sure talked about it," Alonso said. "It's just something that I was looking forward to being invited to if the offer came, and thankfully it did. I'm just really appreciative of it and excited."