The 2023 World Baseball Classic begins on Wednesday with two intriguing games. Cuba is to face the Netherlands and Panama is to face Taiwan. Here are six players not competing due to illness or injury.

Nestor Cortes–Team USA

Even though he was born in Cuba, Cortes was set to play for the United States. However, he will not be playing in the World Baseball Classic because of a hamstring injury suffered during running sprints. In 28 games this past season, the first time All-Star had a record of 12 wins and four losses, 163 strikeouts and an earned run average of 2.44. With the loss of Cortes, the USA starting rotation will include Adam Wainwright of the St. Louis Cardinals, Merrill Kelly of the Arizona Diamondbacks, Lance Lynn of the Chicago White Sox, Kyle Freeland of the Colorado Rockies, Miles Mikolas of the Cardinals, and Brady Singer of the Kansas City Royals.

Jarlin Garcia–Team Dominican Republic

The native of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic will not play in the World Baseball Classic due to left arm tightness. Last season he pitched 58 games with the San Francisco Giants, and had a record of one win and four losses, with 56 strikeouts and an eared run average of 3.74. This season Garcia is with the Pittsburgh Pirates after signing a one-year deal worth $2.5 million on December 28, 2022.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr.–Team Dominican Republic

Even though he was born in Canada, Guerrero Jr. was set to play for the Dominican Republic. The Toronto Blue Jays first baseman is out of the World Baseball Classic due to a knee injury. This past season he batted  .274 with 32 home runs and 97 runs batted in. Guerrero was also an All-Star for the second straight year. This is actually a huge hit for the Dominicans as they now may have to use Washington Nationals first baseman Jeimer Candelario, who only batted .217 last season in Detroit.

Nick Pivetta–Team Canada

The native of Victoria, British Columbia tested positive for coronavirus which is preventing his participation for the maple leaf. Last season with the Boston Red Sox, Pivetta had a record of 10 wins and 12 losses with an earned run average of 4.56. The loss of Pivetta means Canada only has three pitchers on their roster who played in Major League Baseball last season. They are Matt Brash of the Seattle Mariners, Cal Quantrill of the Cleveland Guardians and Rob Zastryzny, who shared his time last year with the New York Mets and Los Angeles Angels. Zastryzny is with the Pirates in 2023.

Jose Quintana–Team Colombia

The native of Arjona, Colombia is missing the World Baseball Classic because of left side tightness. In the offseason, the lefthanded pitcher signed a two-year deal worth $26 million with the New York Mets. Last season with the Pirates and Cardinals, he had a record of six wins, and seven losses, 137 strikeouts and an earned run average of 2.93.

Seiya Suzuki–Team Japan

The native of Tokyo, Japan will not play in the World Baseball Classic because of a left oblique injury. The rightfielder for the Chicago Cubs was a rookie in 2022. This past season, he batted .262 with 14 home runs and 46 runs batted in.

View the original article on Pirates Breakdown: Six players out of World Baseball Classic