World Baseball Classic returning in 2026
The World Baseball Classic will return in 2026, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred announced Tuesday, according to Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post.
Manfred said the 2026 edition of the tournament was written into the collective bargaining agreement.
The World Baseball Classic returned this year for the first time since 2017.
The reaction from players who participated has been overwhelmingly supportive.
"Unbelievable," Manfred said of the response to the tournament, according to James Wagner of the New York Times. "Maybe the best testimony to it, after the unfortunate injury (Edwin) Diaz had, (is) how the players came out and spoke in support of the tournament. It's an indication that they really, really care."
Although there has been consternation among some about when the tournament is played, Manfred believes just before the season is the right spot for it.
"There's just no perfect time. You can't really do it after the playoffs because so many players have been down," Manfred said, according to The Associated Press.
"We have talked about something in the middle of the season. (But) I think on balance, although it's not perfect, this is probably the right place for it."
Team USA captain Mike Trout has already made it clear he intends to participate again.
"I already told them I'm doing the next one. I'm already in," Trout said, per Fox Sports.
The 2026 edition will be the sixth iteration of the tournament after the inaugural event in 2006.