Ruben Tejada, Panama eliminated in World Baseball Classic Qualifier

Posted: November 23, 2012 in News
Tags: , ,

By Steven Inman

The 2013 World Baseball Classic is right around the corner and while powerhouses like Japan and the U.S.A. are already locked in, countries like Panama had to participate in the World Baseball Classic qualifier. The last WBC was in 2009 but this is the first time there was a qualifying tournament to make the actual cut in March. That tournament included Panama and Mets SS Ruben Tejada. Tejada played shortstop for the Panamanian team throughout the whole tournament.

The World Baseball Classic occurs this spring, the same time as major league baseball spring training. Tejada also played for Panama in 2009 as a 19-year-old. He was now considered one of the veteran leaders on this team.

Tejada and Panama lost to Brazil, 1-0, Monday night in a winner-take-all qualifier for the World Baseball Classic. Tejada went 0-for-3. He hit .313 during the qualifying tournament. While Tejada played well, this is probably a good thing for the Mets.

Tejada, 23, showed up late to Spring Training in 2012 infuriating Terry Collins. Tejada couldn’t get his Visa to come back to the U.S. until after pitchers and catcher reported. Collins wanted to work with Tejada one on one last Spring Training but wasn’t able to. He will this year because Panama didn’t make the tournament. Tejada hit .289 in 114 games with the Mets this season.  Hopefully the extra time with Collins next spring will continue the development of young Ruben Tejada.

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