As potentially inflammatory as these comments from former Colorado Rockies great Larry Walker are, not many Americans are paying attention to the World Baseball Classic so it just may go unnoticed.
Walker, who is a Canadian and serves as a first base and hitting coach for the national team at the WBC, told USA Today Sports prior to an encounter with the Americans on Sunday for a place in the second round, that Team USA can’t match the passion of their northern neighbors.
“We got more passion than USA, and we got more passion than anyone in this tournament,” said Walker, Canada’s hitting coach. “Just look at us and the way we play. It’s the Canadian way. Ask (Canadian manager) Ernie (Whitt). He’s an American. He’ll tell you the same thing. It’s what we see.
“We even represent our country during BP (batting practice). Look at us the way we get or bunts down. Guys go a little left wing to right wing, trying to knock in a goal. We’re getting our passes in.”
“We beat USA in 2006, and the Pan-Am games were big,” Walker said, “but the buildup for this one, after what happened (Saturday), would make it more satisfying. The U.S. had to win. We had to win. Bam, here we are. It’s got a lot of meaning for both clubs.
I think the bench clearing brawl between the Canadians and the Mexicans in last night’s game, has the Canadians puffing out their chest a bit, it will be interesting to see who wants the game more when they square off on Sunday to see who moves on and who goes home.