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  1. In baseball there is almost no such thing as a career ending injury. Torn ACLs or UCLs require a year away from the game for rehab but the players come back every time. Chipper Jones tore his ACL a few times and came back easily. The very concept of a ‘career ending injury’ is not backed by truth. Even in football, players can come back from terrible, disgusting injuries that baseball players almost never face. To posit that Robby Cano could end his career by playing in an exhibition baseball game is ridiculous. Career ending injuries only affect marginal players who can’t cut it once they come back or old players who do not feel like they want to go through the rehab effort.

    Further, lets say that Braun and Cano and others do play hard during this tournament. After it is over they can play fewer Spring Training games and rest a bit before the season begins. Then they will have played the same number of games as in a normal spring. There is no increased risk of injury in a WBC game compared with a Spring Training game. The game is the same, it just has a different name.

    Comment by joe — January 18, 2013 @ 4:01 pm

  2. You’re not giving me enough credit!

    Comment by Severe Concussion — January 18, 2013 @ 4:22 pm

  3. Tony conigliaro

    Comment by Crumpled Stiltskin — January 18, 2013 @ 7:55 pm

  4. I am a Major League Baseball fan and also a huge WBC fan. Injury risk or no injury risk, I love watching talented baseball players the world over play each other. In the last WBC, I got a chance to see Yu Darvish for the first time; it was awesome.

    Comment by BurleighGrimes — January 18, 2013 @ 10:46 pm

  5. Corey Koskie would like to disagree.

    Comment by Jake W. — January 19, 2013 @ 12:12 am

  6. You’re talking only about position players I assume since pitchers and career-ending injuries are like bosom buddies.

    Comment by Ed — January 19, 2013 @ 2:25 am

  7. If I see you deserting Spring Training Games to go to the WBC, I am really going to be pissed.

    Comment by Baltar — January 19, 2013 @ 1:51 pm

  8. I see playing in the WBC as a great privilege. I don’t understand why anyone would prefer playing in Spring Training games where, as Matt points out, the risk of injury is probably about the same.

    Comment by Baltar — January 19, 2013 @ 1:54 pm

  9. I agree that playing in the WBC would be a great privilege and could be seen as an honour to represent one’s country. Baseball is one of the sports that is played world wide and gives an excellent opportunity for national competition. It sure beats spring training games which is way too long. The risk of injury would be the same as long as the player doesn’t shag fly balls in right field before the game.

    Comment by 24Johnny — January 20, 2013 @ 10:22 am

  10. I streamed the 09 one online and I fell in love with Yu, because he was the ace of the Japan rotation over Dice k before he was terible. I forgot about Yu until last offseason, where his signing talks triggered my memory. He is now overrated and will go down the drain.

    Comment by baseballvt — January 20, 2013 @ 4:54 pm

  11. Akinori says hai.

    Comment by Garrett — January 20, 2013 @ 7:50 pm

  12. Juan Encarnacion.

    Generally speaking, though, I’d say you’re right. Short of severe concussions, cancer complications, and truly freak injuries, there’s really no such thing as a “career-ending injury” anymore. A severe drop in performance, sure. Absolutely career-ending, Mark Prior would like a word with you.

    Also, there’s no reason to assume there’s any substantially greater risk in WBC games than ST games, at least for position players. Pitchers may throw more innings, which I supposed would be a concern, but there’s no reason hitters should avoid the tournament.

    Also, Jose Abreu.

    Comment by gnomez — January 20, 2013 @ 8:44 pm

  13. Jose Abreu in reference to the WBC and general awesomeness, not CEIs.

    Comment by gnomez — January 20, 2013 @ 8:44 pm

  14. Labrum tears for pitchers comes to mind. A pitcher that tears the labrum in his throwing shoulder almost never returns to his former level of ability (I want to say I heard it’s something like 90% fatal to a pitcher’s MLB career).

    Comment by Ashitaka — January 27, 2013 @ 1:13 pm

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