Mexico’s World Baseball Classic Starting Rotation Looks Strong as Pool Play Approaches

Julio Urias of the Los Angeles Dodgers will start Mexico’s opening game of Pool Play at the 2023 World Baseball Classic. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

By Matthew Tallarini
World Baseball Network

Mexico manager Benji Gil will have a scary starting pitching rotation for the 2023 World Baseball Classic.  Multiple media sources have announced Mexico’s starting pitching rotation for Pool C in Phoenix at Chase Field, the home of Major League Baseball’s Arizona Diamondbacks.  

Mexico will play against Great Britain, the United States, Canada and Colombia during the start of pool play in the World Baseball Classic. 

Los Angeles Dodgers sensation Julio Urias will start the first game of the World Baseball Classic against Colombia on March 11 at 2:30 p.m. EST on Fox. Last season, Urias started in 31 games, going 17-7 with a 2.16 ERA and striking out 166 batters while leading the National League in earned run average. 

Urias has yet to make an All-Star team during his major league career, but has a daunting 2.82 lifetime ERA heading into his eighth season. The one-time World Series champion has a lot to prove this time around. Urias was listed in the designated pitchers pool during the 2017 World Baseball Classic for Mexico. 

Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Patrick Sandoval will be the starting pitcher in the second game of the World Baseball Classic against the United States on March 12 at 10 p.m. EST on Fox Sports 1.  Sandoval is entering his fifth season with the Angels. Last season, Sandoval pitched in 148.2 innings in 27 games, and recorded a 2.91 ERA while going 6-9 and striking out 151 batters. Sandoval can be a huge contributor to Mexico’s pitching staff during the World Baseball Classic.

Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Taijuan Walker will get the nod in the third game of the World Baseball Classic, going up against Great Britain on March 14 at 10 p.m. EST on Fox Sports 1.  Walker is entering his 10th Major League Baseball season and first season with the Phillies.  Last year, Walker was playing for the New York Mets, going 12-5 with a 3.49 ERA, pitching 157.1 innings and striking out 132 batters. Walker a native of Shreveport, Louisiana, was eligible to play for Mexico because of his mother’s heritage.

Houston Astros starting pitcher Jose Urquidy will start Mexico’s fourth game of the World Baseball Classic against Canada on March 15 at 3 p.m. EST on Fox Sports 2. Urquidy is entering his fifth season with the Astros. Last year, Urquidy started 28 games, going 13-8 with a 3.94 ERA, pitching in 164.1 innings and striking out 134 batters. Urquidy could be used in a crucial situation if Mexico can advance to Miami for the single-elimination quarterfinals. A World Series champion last season, Urqudiy appeared in Game 3 of the World Series out of the bullpen, pitching three innings and allowing one hit, walking one batter and striking out four.

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