Major League Baseball star Tim Lincecum would not be playing for the Philippines in the World Baseball Classic (WBC) qualifiers scheduled on November 15 to 18 at the Xinzhuang Stadium in New
Taipei City, Taiwan according to Hector Thomas Navasero, secretary general of the Philippine Amateur Baseball Association (PABA).
“The San Francisco Giants has approved Tim to play for our country but he can’t join us next week because of a personal reason,” Navasero told The Manila Times.
The PABA earlier sent a request to the 28-year-old Lincecum whose maternal grandparents are from Cebu province to reinforce the Philippine contingent to the WBC qualifier. The ace pitcher was a four-time National League All-Star (2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011). Lincecum was also a member of the 2010 World Series champion team, a two-time National League Cy Young Award winner (2008 and 2009) and a three-time National League Strikeout champion (2008, 2009 and 2010).
Filipino-American pitcher Clay Rapada of the New York Yankees also declined to play for Philippines in the WBC meet because various commitments.
However, Navasero said that the Philippine squad would be reinforced by imports Geno Espineli, a former San Francisco Giants pitcher, Ryuya Ogawa, Chad Nacapoy, Leighton Pangilinan, and Ryan Pineda. The homegrown members of the team are Jon Jon Robles, Charlie Labrador, Darwin dela Calzada, Vladymir Eguia, Romeo Jasmin, Joseph Orillana, Jonash Ponce, Rommel Roja, Ramil Empacis, Ruben Angeles and Ernesto Binarao.
Despite the absence of Lincecum, Navasero remains optimistic that the Philippine squad would fare well in the tournament against host Taiwan, Thailand and New Zealand.
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Carlos Yoshimura (D), Yamaha/JAP (liga industrial)
Daniel Missaki, Nippon Blue Jays
Ernesto Chacon (D), Atibaia
Gabriel Asakura (D), Cal State Golden Eagles/EUA (NCAA)
Hugo Kanabushi (C), Tokyo Yakult Swallows/JAP (liga menor)
Jean Antônio Tomé (D), Atibaia
Kesley Kondo (D), Utah Utes/EUA (NCAA)
Murilo Gouveia (D), Houston Astros/EUA (nível A)
Oscar Nakaoshi (C), Hakuoh University/JAP (universitário)
Rafael Fernandes (D), Tokyo Yakult Swallows/JAP (NPB)
Rafael Moreno (D), Baltimore Orioles/EUA (nível rookie)
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Yan Gomes, Cleveland Indians/EUA (MLB)
Allan Fanhoni, NTT East/JAP (liga industrial)
Daniel Matsumoto, Tokyo Yakult Swallows/JAP (liga menor)
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Lucas Rojo, Philadelphia Phillies/EUA (Liga de Verão da Venezuela)
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