Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Mexico's WBC Qualifier roster announced, Adrian Gonzalez to play

Now that the Mexican League has given its blessings to allowing Liga players to take part in next week's World Baseball Classic qualifier tournament in Mexicali's La Nida ballpark, the names on Mexico's 27-man roster have been released.

Thirteen of the 27 players in uniforms will be pitchers, including BBM Winter Award winners Hector Daniel Rodriguez (Playoff MVP) and Javier Solano (Pitcher of the Year).  Former major leaguer Oliver Perez will be wearing the green along with Mexican Pacific League ERA champ Alejandro Soto and record-setting reliever Andres Avila.

There are plenty of familiar names among position players, including Caribbean Series title game hero Jorge Vazquez, but none more prominent than Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star first baseman Adrian Gonzalez (pictured), who will play under both his brother and former San Diego and Mazatlan teammate Edgar, Mexico's manager for the four-team tourney and current Mexicali Aguilas skipper, and father David, who'll serve as first base coach.  The 34-year-old Adrian (also known as "El Titan") has played in five MLB midsummer classics, including last year's event, and has a career .290 average with 290 homers and 1,056 RBI's in all or part of twelve seasons.

Here is the complete roster of Mexico's national team for the 2016 WBC Qualifier:

Pitchers (13)
Armando Aguilar, Andres Avila, Arturo Barradas, Carlos Fisher, Jesus Garcia, Geovanny Gallegos, Steven Landazuri, Oliver Perez, Hector Daniel Rodriguez, Jake Sanchez, Mark Serrano, Javier Solano, Alejandro Soto
Catchers (3)
Xorge Carrillo, Erick Rodriguez, Humberto Sosa
Infielders (6)
Adrian Gonzalez (1b), Walter Ibarra (ss), Alejandro Mejia (1b-3b), Agustin Murillo (3b), Esteban Quiroz (2b), Issmael Salas (ut)
Outfielders (4)
Sebastian Elizalde, Leo Heras, Efren Navarro, Juan Perez
Designated Hitter (1)
Jorge Vazquez
Manager
Edgar Gonzalez
Coaches
Rigo Beltran (pitching), David Gonzalez (first base), Bobby Magallenes (bench), Anthony Medrano (third base), Alejandro Pelaez (batting), Jose Silva (bullpen)

The Mexicans will open their qualifier schedule on Thursday, March 17 against the Czech Republic.  Germany and Nicaragua will square off that afternoon.