Team USA picks Phillips for Classic roster
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com
Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips was one of 27 players named on Thursday to Team USA’s provisional roster for the 2013 World Baseball Classic. He is currently the lone Reds player on the American squad.
A two-time National League All-Star and three-time NL Gold Glove Award winner, the 31-year-old Phillips batted .281 with 18 home runs and 77 RBIs in 2012 for the Reds.
This will be Phillips’ first World Baseball Classic. The final 28-man roster must be submitted by Feb. 20. Phillips will have the opportunity to play alongside fellow American infielders like Mets third baseman David Wright, Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins and first baseman Mark Teixeira from the Yankees.
During the 2012 regular season, Phillips was omitted from the NL All-Star roster. After the season, he was denied a third Gold Glove when the Cubs’ Darwin Barney won it for the first time.
Team USA is scheduled begin training in Phoenix on March 4 and then compete in first-round play with Pool D at Chase Field from March 8-10. Also in the pool are teams from Canada, Mexico and Italy.
If the American team continues to advance, round 2 is slated from March 12-16 at Marlins Park in Miami and the semifinals and finals are scheduled from March 17-19 at AT&T Park in San Francisco.
The Reds hold Spring Training in nearby Goodyear, Ariz., which will make the logistics a little easier. Phillips can begin Spring Training with the Reds when the full squad reports on Feb. 15 and possibly play in the first 10 days of Cactus League games.
However, Phillips would be away from his big league club for as long as Team USA is taking part in the Classic.