Monday, February 16, 2009

Should Owners be able to hold players back from the WBC?

The Reds new catch Ramon Hernandez is about to venture off to play for his home country, Venezuela, for the World Baseball Classic.

Because of his departure Dusty Baker is trying to give him a crash course in learning the pitchers. The newly acquired Hernandez is leaving camp to begin March 2 practice with the Venezuelan team for the World Baseball Classic.

Baker is trying to get Hernandez to catch every pitcher in camp at least once during their sessions before he leaves, “Give Ramon a condensed synopsis of our pitching. He is leaving so soon I was concerned. But he said he went through the same thing in Baltimore and came out OK. He is one of the best catchers out of his country and everybody is short of catching.”

This brings me to my question, shouldn't a Owner or GM be able to hold a player back from playing in the WBC? A relationship between the pitcher and catcher in the majors is very important to the teams success. It takes awhile for a catcher to learn everything about each individual pitcher. Isn't practicing and planning for the upcoming season more important than representing your country for one-season? Can't Hernandez decline this year since he needs to become accustomed to his new team and play next year?

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