Quick Impressions of the other 15 WBC rosters (and a link to the US)

More rosters were revealed at 4 PM, go below the jump for my quick run-down of them. It will be updated as the rosters are revealed on television. Also, note that the rosters (which I will link to when I find a good link) are NOT FINAL and could change.

Japan: As expected, the Japanese have no MLB players, and instead are using entirely NPB players. That said, they have to be considered one of the favorites, led by NPB Triple Crown winner Shinnosuke Abe and pitchers Kenta Maeda and Masahiro Tanaka.

China: The two players on the roster who are familiar to American fans may be the two passport players: Bruce Chen and Ray Chang. If they play well, China maybe be able to pull off an upset… maybe.

Cuba: See yesterday.

Brazil: The Brazilians shocked the Panamanians to qualify, but still only have one MLB player: Yan Gomes. However, he is, as of now, not listed on the roster, despite the fact that he was on the early “first two players” roster sheet and in an article just a few days ago. It’s possible that, like some other players, it is a case of waiting for insurance approval.

Netherlands: A candidate for a Cinderella run once again, they have lots of young players, including Jurickson Profar and Andrelton Simmons, mixed with established veterans like Roger Bernadina and Andruw Jones. Pitching may be an issue, however.

Australia: Although the original reports of Travis Blackley and Grant Balfour playing turned out to be false, the Aussies still will have at least 8 players with MLB experience on the tea. Peter Moylan and Luke Hughes are probably the most notable.

Korea: Isn’t too different from previous posts.

Chinese Taipei: Will have home field advantage as well as MLB-experienced players like Chien-Ming Wang, Hong-Chih Kuo and the young Che-Hsuan Lin at their disposal. This could be the year that Taiwan finally escapes the first round.

Venezuela: Felix Hernandez anchors the pitching staff while Miguel Cabrera, Carlos Gonzalez and Pablo Sandoval provide plenty of thump in the lineup. Should be considered a favorite.

Spain: Even with the Spanish-descended players (most notably Engel Beltre), it’s unlikely that they will do much in their group against Venezuela, DR and Puerto Rico.

Dominican Republic: Wanting to avoid another embarrassment, their roster includes Adrian Beltre, Hanley Ramirez, Jose Reyes and Robinson Cano… and plenty of others. Lack of depth in parts of the pitching staff could be their downfall.

Puerto Rico: Carlos Beltran and Yadier Molina are the most notable players, but they will be joined by Angel Pagan and Javier Vazquez (who is coming out of retirement starting with this tournament). While they are not as good as the DR or Venezuela on paper, they are a team that could easily pull an upset.

Team USA: We covered this earlier today.

Italy: As expected, it has lots of Italian Americans (or Italian-Venezuelans), most notably Nick Punto, Francisco Cervelli, Drew Butera and, above all, Jason Grilli. Alex Maestri and Alex Liddi are the two best Italian-born players on the team.

Mexico: The Gonzalez brothers and Yovani Gallardo are the most notable players of what should be a good team, but the fact that Jaime Garcia had to pull out due to his injury could hurt their pitching depth.

Canada: They’ve added more players from the past roster release, but still have a spot open, presumably reserved for Joey Votto (once he clears his insurance issue) or Ryan Dempster. If Dempster doesn’t play, the starting pitching is in deep trouble.

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