Comparing Canada's WBC rosters

By George Farelli
Canadian Baseball Network

The data summaries for each Canada roster heading into the fourth World Baseball Classic. 
 
In analyzing applicable statistics for the actual Team Canada Rosters who participated in WBC in 2006, 2009 and 2013, plus the roster for 2017, I’ve used exact same format.
 
The Baseball Almanac was used to confirm season Major League statistics for each player, plus some additional details pertaining to Team Canada players, are included beneath the summaries in each case.


 
Major League Experience for Canadians
2006 WBC                                
Position Players
                                                   
600 At Bat Seasons: None                                                
100 Games Played Seasons: Matt Stairs (9), Corey Koskie (6), Jason Bay (2), Justin Morneau (1), Peter Orr (1).                    
100 Base Hit Seasons: Matt Stairs (6), Corey Koskie (6), Jason Bay (2), Justin Morneau (1).                        
20 Home Run Seasons: Matt Stairs (5), Corey Koskie (2), Jason Bay (2), Justin Morneau (1).
100 RBI Seasons: Matt Stairs (2), Corey Koskie (1), Jason Bay (1).                                
Average Age: 28 Years, 3 Months                                            
Average No. Years in Majors: 2.4 Years                                                
Pitchers                                                    
25 or More Starts: Rheal Cormier (2), Paul Quantrill (2), Erik Bedard (1), Jeff Francis (1), Chris Reitsma (1).                    
50 or More Appearances: Rheal Cormier (7), Paul Quantrill (7), Chris Reitsma (3), Jesse Crain (1).                        

10 or More Wins: Paul Quantrill (2), Rheal Cormier (1), Jesse Crain (1), Jeff Francis (1).        Five or More Saves: Paul Quantrill (2), Chris Reitsma (2).                                    
Average Age: 27 Years, 6 Months                                            
Average No. Years in Majors: 3.4 Years                                                
Above totals reflect stats up to end of 2005.

30 Players on Roster, 16 Position and 14 Pitchers.
Oldest Matt Stairs (38 Years, 1 Month). Youngest Chris Robinson (21 Years, 10 Months).

Ten players on Canada’s 2006 Roster had zero big league games played.                    

Roster had a total of 11 every day players (Bay, Koskie, Morneau, Orr and Stairs as position regulars, plus Bedard, Cormier, Crain, Francis, Quantrill and Reitsma as starters or relief pitchers). Their combined service time including 2005 amounts to a total of 67 years, resulting in an average of 6.1 years.
 
Average Age at the time of the 2006 WBC for these 11 Players, was 29 years 9 months.

Canada finished 2-1 in pool play, and did not advance due to run differential.                                    
2006 Tournament Highlights for Canada - OF Adam Stern led WBC in Batting (6-for-9, .667 average)
 

                   
2009 WBC
Position Players  
                                                 
600 At Bat Seasons: Justin Morneau (1)                                            
100 Games Played Seasons: Matt Stairs (12), Corey Koskie (6), Jason Bay (2), Justin Morneau (4), Mark Teahen (4), Russell Martin (3), Peter Orr (1), Joey Votto (1)
100 Base Hit Seasons: Matt Stairs (7), Corey Koskie (6), Jason Bay (5), Justin Morneau (4), Mark Teahen (4), Russell Martin (3), Joey Votto (1)        

20 Home Run Seasons: Matt Stairs (6), Jason Bay (5), Justin Morneau (4), Corey Koskie (2), Joey Votto (1)                    
100 RBI Seasons: Justin Morneau (3), Jason Bay (3), Matt Stairs (2), Corey Koskie (1)                            
Average Age: 28 Years, 8 Months                                            
Average No. Years in Majors: 3.7 Years          

                                     
Pitchers                                                    
25 or More Starts: None                                                
50 or More Appearances: Jesse Crain (3)                                            

10 or More Wins: Jesse Crain (1).                                             
5 or More Saves: None                                                

Average Age: 26 Years, 9 Months                                            
Average No. Years in Majors: 1.4 Years                                                
Above totals reflect stats up to end of 2008 season. 28 Players on Roster, 15 Position and 13 Pitchers.

The roster featured nine every day big-league players including eight position regulars (Bay, Koskie, Martin, Morneau, Orr, Stairs, Teahen, Votto plus one pitcher Crain).
 
Combined service time in majors up to end of 2008 season was 55 years, with the average working out to 6.1 years per player.
 
The average Age at 2009 WBC for nine players was 29 years 10 months.

Oldest Matt Stairs (41 Years, 1 Month), Youngest Brett Lawrie (19 Years, 2 Months).
Eleven players on Canada’s 2009 Roster had zero big league games played.                                                    
Canada finished 0-2 in Pool Play, and did not advance                                        

Michael Saunders, right, is greeted by Adam Loewen after a home run in 2013. 

Michael Saunders, right, is greeted by Adam Loewen after a home run in 2013. 

2013 WBC
Position Players  
                                                 
600 At Bat Seasons: Justin Morneau (1)                                            
100 Games Played Seasons: Justin Morneau (6), Joey Votto (5), Peter Orr (2), Michael Saunders (2), Brett Lawrie (1).                
100 Base Hit Seasons: Justin Morneau (7), Joey Votto (5), Brett Lawrie (1), Michael Saunders (1)                        

20 Home Run Seasons: Justin Morneau (4), Joey Votto (4).                                    
100 RBI Seasons: Justin Morneau (4), Joey Votto (2)                                    
Average Age: 28 Years, 4 Months
Average No. Years in Majors: 2.3 Years      

                                         
Pitchers                                                    
25 or More Starts: None                                                
50 or More Appearances: Jesse Crain (7), John Axford (3).                                    
10 or More Wins: Jesse Crain (1)                                            
Five or More Saves: John Axford (3)                                            

Average Age: 27 Years, 8 Months                                            
Average No. Years in Majors: 2.3 Years                                                
Above totals reflect stats up to end of 2012 season.
29 Players on Roster, 15 Position and 14 Pitchers.

Oldest Peter Orr (33 Years, 9 Months), Youngest Jameson Taillon (21 Years, 9 Months).
Twelve players on Canada’s 2013 Roster have zero big league games played.

Roster included seven MLB regulars, position players Lawrie, Morneau, Orr, Saunders, Votto plus pitchers Axford and Crain.
 
Combined service time in MLB up to end of 2012 season was 42 years, and the average works out to 6.0 years per player.
 
Average Age at 2013 WBC for seven players was 29 years five months.
                                                    
Canada finished 1-2 in Pool Play, and did not advance    
                            
2013 Tournament Highlights for Canada: OF Michael Saunders named to the All WBC Team            

1B Justin Morneau

1B Justin Morneau

                
2017 WBC                          
Position Players    
                                                
600 At Bat Seasons: Freddie Freeman (1), Justin Morneau (1).                            
100 Games Played Seasons: Justin Morneau (8), Freddie Freeman (6), Peter Orr (2).            100 Base Hit Seasons: Justin Morneau (9), Freddie Freeman (6).                                    
20 Home Run Seasons: Justin Morneau (5), Freddie Freeman (4)                            
100 RBI Seasons: Justin Morneau (4), Freddie Freeman (1)                                    
Average Age: 28 Years, 6 Months                                            
Average No. Years in Majors 3.0 Years         

                                       
Pitchers                                                    
25 or More Starts: Ryan Dempster (7)                                            
50 or More Appearances: Eric Gagne (4), Ryan Dempster (3), Jim Henderson (1)                                
10 or More Wins: Ryan Dempster (6)                                            
Five or More Saves: Eric Gagne (6), Ryan Dempster (3), Jim Henderson (1)                                
Average Age 30 Years, 8 Months                                            
Average No. Years in Majors 3.6 Years                                                
Above totals reflect stats up to end of 2016 season.
28 Players on Roster, 14 Position and 14 Pitchers.

Oldest Eric Gagne (41 Years, 2 Months), while the youngest is Josh Naylor (19 Years, 9 Months).

Twelve players on Canada’s 2017 Roster have zero big league games played.                                                    
The roster features only three MLB Regulars in Freeman and Morneau, plus relief pitcher Henderson. Should be noted that roster adjustments meant exclusion of John Axford, Adam Loewen and Kellin Deglan from the analysis. Analysis includes recent Roster changes. LHP Ryan Kellogg replaced Loewen, C Mike Reeves replaced Deglan and Jesen Dygestile-Therrien replaced Axford. 

Combined service time in MLB up to end of 2016 season is 25 years, and the average works out to 8.3 years per player.
 
Average Age at the 2017 WBC for three regulars will be 32 Years 2 Months.
 
Obviously, participation by Canadian every day regular MLB players, or as I would call them, our very best players in the WBC has declined quite significantly, from 11 in 2006, to nine in 2009, to seven in 2013, and now to only three for 2017.