|Pakistan and Brazil in the opening game of the WBC Qualifier on Thursday afternoon. Brazil won 10-0. Photo by Jason Schott.|
The World Baseball Classic Qualifier is taking place this weekend at MCU Park in Coney Island. Great Britain, Israel, Pakistan, and Brazil are competing for the right to play in the WBC next March.
There are plenty of New York City connections to these teams, including former Mets Ike Davis and Josh Satin, and Staten Island native Jason Marquis, who are all playing for Israel.
Ike Davis was drafted by the Mets with the 18th overall selection in the 2008 MLB Draft. Davis spent five seasons with the Mets, from 2010 to 2014. As a heralded rookie in 2010, he hit .264 with 19 home runs, 71 RBI, 33 doubles, and 73 runs scored. Davis' best season as a Met came in 2012 when he had career bests of 32 home runs and 90 RBI. Davis was traded from the Mets to the Pirates in 2014, and played with the Oakland Athletics in 2015. This season, he appeared in eight games for the Yankees and is currently a free agent.
For Josh Satin, this will be his farewell to the game of baseball. Satin was chosen by the Mets in the sixth round of the 2008 MLB Draft, and he played four seasons in the major leagues for the Mets from 2011 to 2014. The 31-year old Satin had his biggest year with the Mets in 2013 when he played in 75 games and had three home runs, 17 RBI, 15 doubles, and 23 runs scored in 190 at-bats,
Right-handed pitcher Jason Marquis, a Staten Island native, played for 15 years in the major leagues. He pitched for Atlanta from 2000-03, St. Louis from 2004-06, the Chicago Cubs in 2007 and 2008, Colorado in 2009, Washington in 2010 and 2011, Arizona in 2011, Minnesota in 2012, San Diego in 2012 and 2013, and Cincinnati in 2015. Marquis was an All-Star in 2009, when he won 15 games, which he also did in 2004, when he helped the Cardinals win the National League pennant. Marquis went 124-118 during his career with a 4.61 earned run average, and had 1,174 strikeouts and 769 walks in 1,968.1 innings pitched.
Left-handed pitcher Alex Katz, a native of Manhasset, New York, will be competing on Team Israel. Katz attended Herricks High School in Williston Park and St. John's University in Queens. He is currently on the roster of the Single-A Winston Salem Dash in the Chicago White Sox organization.
Team Israel features two players that are currently in the Mets organization, right-handed pitchers Tyler Herron and Josh Zeid, who both are with their Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas. Zeid has appeared in 48 major league games for the Houston Astros, pitching in 25 games in 2013 and 23 in 2014.
Great Britain's roster also includes two players in the Mets organization, outfielder Champ Stuart and left-handed pitcher Blake Taylor. Stuart is at Double-A Binghamton and Taylor is at rookie-level Kingsport.
Great Britain outfielder Antoan Richardson, who is currently a free agent, played in 13 games for the Yankees in 2014, and hit .313 with five stolen bases. Richardson appeared in nine games with Atlanta in 2011.
Great Britain infielder Jordan Serena is a product of Columbia University in New York City. Serena is currently with the Single-A Burlington Bees in the Los Angeles Angels organization. In four years at Columbia, Serena hit .295 with three home runs, 55 RBI, 36 doubles, six triples, and 78 stolen bases in 180 games.
Brazil features the Dante Bichette, Jr. and Bo Bichette, sons of former major leaguer and All-Star Dante Bichette. Dante Jr. was drafted by the Yankees in the sandwich round of the 2011 Draft and is currently on the roster of their Double-A affiliate, the Trenton Thunder. Bo currently plays in the Toronto Blue Jays organization.