Dodgers: Team USA Manager Talks About Mookie Betts’ Role In the WBC
Mookie Betts could be a sort of utility player for Mark DeRosa and Team USA.
The World Baseball Classic is just around the corner. The 20 countries participating in the WBC will be fighting for the gold starting in early March, and Team USA, which features several Dodgers stars, will be in search of their second gold medal of the WBC.
Team USA is a star-studded team; guys like Trea Turner, Mike Trout, Pete Alonso, Paul Goldschmidt, and many others have committed. Team USA manager Mark DeRosa will be responsible for managing these players.
A handful of Dodgers will be representing Team USA, one of them being LA’s biggest star, Mookie Betts. Betts committed to the team in August, and DeRosa was asked about the Dodgers right fielder and the type of role he will have. DeRosa says Mookie is ready to play in the infield if that’s what it takes.
“He would tell you he’s a second baseman that got moved to right field. Listen I’m going to honor Mookie if he wants to see a little bit of time at second base then listen I’m certainly going to get him some innings at second base might not be in an elimination game when our lives are on the line. but he certainly is going to play some second base over the course of this he’s dead set on this being a priority for this…He can pretty much whatever he wants on a baseball field but the problem is you have to justify that to the other 29 guys. So that’s my thing it’s like I know Mookie can get it done but it’s just I also want a true second baseman on the roster that has proven in big spots can turn a double play.”
Mookie is the best right-field defender in the game today, so of course, you want him out at right, making spectacular catches and outfield assists. However, someone should show DeRosa some Mookie highlights at second base because he is just as good there as he is in right field.
Red Sox infielder Trevor Story committed to the team, but he underwent right elbow surgery, and Mets second baseman Jeff McNeil will replace Story.
That leaves one second baseman in this All-Star-filled team, and best believe Mookie will get his fair share of time there. You never know; if he impresses the coaching staff, he might be there for the bulk of innings.