It appears Canada may be going with an unconventional choice for their shortstop at the World Baseball Classic.
According to Jon Paul Morosi of Foxsports.com , veteran catcher Russell Martin is expected to be Canada’s starting shortstop when the WBC kicks off next month.
“It’s hilarious, the reactions I get,” Martin told Morosi at Pittsburgh Pirates camp Monday. “It’s like, ‘This guy’s a catcher. He wants to play shortstop.’ “
Martin does not have any professional experience at the shortstop position as the 30-year-old has spent the majority of his big-league career behind the plate.
He made brief appearances at third base in 2008 for the Los Angeles Dodgers but the Canadian roster doesn’t have any real professional experience at shortstop.
Many are surprised that Martin is so open to the position switch but the Canadian catcher is accepting the challenge with open arms and has been taking ground balls during his free time early in Spring Training.
“I expect it to go well, because I know I have the talent,” said Martin. “I’m doing the work I need to do now to not embarrass myself and my country. Hopefully, people will be pleasantly surprised when they see how I play.
“I’m going to do what I feel like doing. I feel like playing shortstop. It’s a selfish move from my part. But it’s what I love to do. Sometimes you’ve got to do what you feel like doing for yourself. And I want to do it.
Martin is expected to join the Canadian team in Arizona in early March before the tournament begins on Mar. 8.