Maybe the Royals’ hot start this spring has drawn some attention. The Kansas City Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer has been added to the Team USA roster for the WBC. He replaces the New York Yankees Mark Teixeira, who suffered an injury to his wrist and had to drop out.
Hosmer, who suffered from a season long sophomore slump in 2012, is a strange choice for Team USA. It is unknown who the first choice to replace the Yankee slugger might have been, but Hosmer is now representing his country. Team USA trains in Arizona so Hosmer may have been asked because of the late date and his proximity with the Royals playing in the Cactus League.
Regardless of the reasons, this is a great opportunity for Hosmer to regain some national attention he lost with his poor performance a year ago. The Royals 10-0-1 start may also have pulled attention toward their young first baseman, who has hit well thus far in limited spring at bats.
As with the other Royals playing in the WBC, Kansas City will hope Hosmer escapes with his health and gets enough work and repetitions while with Team USA to be ready when the regular season begins. Teams surely will worry that their players, usually key cogs, don’t get hurt and the Royals will keep their collective fingers crossed that Hosmer, Salvador Perez, Tim Collins, Luis Mendoza, and Kelvin Herrrera will return from representing their various countries with their health intact.