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U.S. names world baseball classic squad

Feb. 25, 2009 at 9:23 PM

NEW YORK, Feb. 25 (UPI) -- Infielders Dustin Pedroia, Derek Jeter and Jimmy Rollins will lead the United States entry into next month's world baseball classic.

Pedroia was the 2008 American League MVP after batting .326 with 17 home runs and 83 RBI for the Boston Red Sox.

Jeter, the lone U.S native from the New York Yankees and a nine-time all-star, has a .300 career batting average with 206 home runs and 1,002 RBI.

Rollins was the NL MVP after the 2007 season and has a career .277 batting average.

Among others on the U.S. squad when rosters were submitted Tuesday were pitchers Joe Nathan of Minnesota and Jake Peavy of San Diego and infielders Kevin Youkilis of Boston and David Wright of the New York Mets.

"There's really no bigger honor as a baseball player to go represent your country," Wright said.

The U.S. joins Venezuela, Canada and Italy in group C with defending WBC champion Japan leading group A.

The U.S. plays its opener March 7 against Canada.

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