Puerto Rico names Yadier Molina manager for the World Baseball Classic
The rocket-armed legend will go from behind the plate to the dugout steps for 2023′s World Baseball Classic as Puerto Rico’s manager
As the sun sets on a glorious career behind the plate, one of the strongest-armed catchers that baseball has ever seen, 40-year-old Yadier Molina has been named as Puerto Rico’s manager for the 2023 World Baseball Classic.
The 10-time All-Star and eight-time Gold Glove winner has often been seen as an on-field coach by the St Louis Cardinals, and has had his eye on a foray into coaching, announcing before the season that when he finished the season in St Louis, he would take over the reins with Navegantes del Magallanes in the Venezuelan League this winter.
Yadi appeared as a young 23-year-old catcher in the inaugural 2006 WBC and returned in 2009, 2013, and 2017. In the last two editions of the WBC, Puerto Rico finished as runners-up and Yadi will be looking to bring his experience to bear to help push them over the line toward their first championship.
Jose Sola will join Molina as the new Puerto Rico GM, after Eduardo Perez resigned from the position in protest of Molina’s appointment.
The 2023 World Baseball Classic will begin on March 8, 2023, and will be the first WBC since 2017, with 2021 cancelled due to covid.
Final rosters are not due until December, but Puerto Rico is expected to be one of the tournament’s favorites, with Javier Báez and Edwin Díaz committed to play and Marcus Stroman expected to switch from the USA to Puerto Rico in time for the event.