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Padres starter Nick Martinez opting out of 2023 World Baseball Classic

Martinez was going to be a reliever for Mark DeRosa’s squad

Championship Series - Philadelphia Phillies v San Diego Padres - Game Two Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The San Diego Padres probably just took a big exhale because one of their starting pitchers, Nick Martinez, has decided to sit out the 2023 World Baseball Classic after previously committing to be a reliever for Team USA.

It seems like Martinez has always been a team guy and so this isn’t that surprising. The 32-year-old was mostly pitching out of the bullpen in 2022 but signed a contract this offseason with San Diego to be a starting pitcher (at least to start the year).

He would’ve went into Spring Training ramping up to a starter’s workload just to go back to being a reliever for a couple weeks before having to ramp back up again. That could’ve been problematic for both Martinez and the Padres.

The bottom line is him being healthy for the Padres is more important than him pitching for Team USA. I know he wanted to represent his country but he’s been fortunate enough to already do so in the Olympics (2021). Now his sights are set on winning the World Series.