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Will Texas Rangers infielder Jurickson Profar play in the World Baseball Classic after all?
Profar, who will turn 20 in two weeks, told club officials on Wednesday that he wanted to take some more time to think about whether he'll participate in the event and won't make a decision until after he reports to spring training in Surprise, Ariz., next week.
Profar, the top-ranked prospect in ESPN.com's Keith Law's ratings this week, had told the club last week that he was not planning on playing in the WBC. Profar, from Curacao, is on the Netherlands' provisional roster. The club's pool play takes place in Taiwan in early March, so Profar could miss a week or so of spring training to play.
Profar tweeted Wednesday afternoon that he was excited to see some of his teammates on the Dutch team, prompting the Rangers to check in with him again about the situation.
Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said Tuesday that Profar will come to spring training to compete for a roster spot and didn't rule out the possibility that he could make the club even if he didn't have a defined every-day role. He also indicated that Profar could see some time in the outfield as the club looks at every possibility to get him in the lineup.
"Our stance on Jurickson is that if he demonstrates he's one of the best 25 or the best nine and we're comfortable there's enough of an opportunity for him to play and that it doesn't hurt his progress," Daniels said. "I seem him long term as a shortstop or middle infielder. But he may take some balls out there as well. We'll see what happens."
Profar became the third teenager in the history of the game (since 1876) to hit a homer in his first big-league at-bat, accomplishing the feat last September. He was 3 for 17 in nine games with the Rangers, getting called up after batting .281 with 14 homers and 62 RBIs in 126 games for Double-A Frisco.