By Matthew Tallarini
World Baseball Network
Jan. 21, 2023
Mexico team General Manager Rodrigo Lopez announced on Wednesday Toronto Blue Jays catcher Alejandro Kirk was added to the preliminary roster for the 2023 World Baseball Classic.
In 2022, Kirk played in 139 games, batting .285 in 470 at bats with 14 home runs and 63 RBI during the season. Kirk also made his first all-star team and won the American League Silver Slugger Award last season, his third year as a major leaguer.
Kirk was evaluated by scout Dean Decillis of the Toronto Blue Jays in 2016 at a showcase event held by the Toros de Tijuana of the Liga Mexicana de Beisbol. On Sept. 24, 2016, he received a $7,500 signing bonus from Toronto, with the Toros receiving $22,500 for his rights.
Kirk journeyed through the Blue Jays organization for a few years before making his Major League debut in September 2020. The Tijuana native was placed on the 60-day injured list during the 2021 season with a left hip flexor injury before returning on July 20, and later finished the season batting .242 with eight home runs and 24 runs batted in 60 games.
Kirk will join a group of all-star caliber teammates, including Alex Verdugo, Julio Urias, Randy Arozarena as well as Luis and Ramon Urias for Mexico, which will play in Pool C of the World Baseball Classic in Phoenix, Ariz. at Chase Field from March 11-15. Mexico will go up against Canada, USA, Colombia, and Great Britain. Mexico opens up against Colombia March 11 at 2:30 p.m. EST.