By Nick Piecoro, azcentral sports
First baseman Paul Goldschmidt did his due diligence before agreeing to play in the World Baseball Classic, wanting to be as certain as possible that participation in next month’s tournament wouldn’t take away from his preparation for the regular season.
“I called guys that had done it in the past and a lot of them said you’re even more ready because you’ve played in some more high-stakes games rather than just spring training games and the competition is higher,” Goldschmidt said. “So I took it as a positive getting to play with and against some of the best players in the world.”
Goldschmidt said he’s excited to be able to participate. The last time the tournament was held was in 2013, just before Goldschmidt put together his first monster season in the big leagues and, thus, before he would have been a viable candidate to play.
“It’s fun to get to go out there and represent your country and the Diamondbacks and go compete against the best players in the world,” he said. “It will be a very competitive tournament and it’s fun to get out there and compete.”