Cuba Starts Training for World Baseball Classic

HAVANA TIMES — Fifty Cuban players started training on Wednesday with eyes on the Third World Baseball Classic, reported the Cuban National Institute of Sports’ online newspaper Jit.

Managers of Cuban national baseball were cited by the news source as saying that cuts will be made to form the national team for games in Italy, Japan and Taiwan – preparatory matches for next year’s Classic.

Experts contemplate that among those likely to wind up being on the national team are Frederich Cepeda, Ariel Pestano and Yulieski Gourriel, while the coach will probably be Jorge Fuentes and the manager Victor Mesa.

Cuba, the holder of 25 Olympic and three World titles, has not won a major tournament since the Netherlands World Cup in 2005. In the first Classic (2006) it took second place, but in the second tournament (2009) the island was eliminated in the second round.