It looks like Chicago White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko isn’t going anywhere.
Speculated as a possible Team USA roster replacement in the World Baseball Classic for the injured Mark Teixeira, Konerko wasn’t selected after all. Instead, the U.S. squad will go with Kansas City Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer instead.
There was some indication that the decision was in Konerko’s hands, so it’s possible he declined to join the United States club in order to concentrate on his preparation for the upcoming season with his White Sox teammates.
Konerko is coming off a season when a wrist injury limited him to 26 home runs and 75 RBIs, his lowest numbers in those categories since 2008.
There are no White Sox players on the United States squad. Two White Sox starters will participate for other WBC teams: Alex Rios for Puerto Rico and Alejandro De Aza for the Dominican Republic. Jesse Crain was set to play for Canada but backed out after a minor leg injury.
Team USA opens WBC play Friday against Mexico in Phoenix.