Springer decides to skip World Baseball Classic

Springer decides to skip World Baseball Classic

HOUSTON -- Though he was on the United States' provisional roster, Astros outfielder George Springer has elected not to play in the World Baseball Classic this spring, a source confirmed for MLB.com.

Springer, who was eligible to play for the United States and Puerto Rico, will skip the tournament and remain with the Astros this spring. Houston already has WBC commitments from second baseman Jose Altuve (Venezuela), outfielder Carlos Beltran (Puerto Rico), shortstop Carlos Correa (Puerto Rico), pitcher Luke Gregerson (U.S.) and outfielder Norichika Aoki (Japan).

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Springer, 27, was born in Connecticut, but his mother, Laura, is from Puerto Rico, making him eligible to play for Puerto Rico. Springer, who said in early December that Correa was trying to recruit him to play for Puerto Rico, hit .261 with a .359 on-base percentage, 29 homers and 82 RBIs for the Astros in 2016.

This year's WBC begins March 6, and games will be played in Guadalajara, Mexico; Tokyo, Japan; Seoul, South Korea; Miami; and San Diego. The championship round will take place at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles from March 20-22.

This will be the fourth installment of the international tournament, which was first played in 2006. Japan won the first two titles (2006, '09) and the Dominican Republic won in '13. The U.S. hasn't finished better than fourth ('09).

Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.