No no no no no no no.
Mark Teixeira of the New York Yankees and planned starting first baseman for Team USA in the World Baseball classic has come down with an injury. The team needs a first baseman. Naturally reporters asked Ryan Howard if he would consider going. He says he would "listen".
Ryan Howard said he would listen if Team USA called looking for 1B after Tex injury. Has heard nothing otherwise. #Philliestalk— Jim Salisbury (@JSalisburyCSN) March 6, 2013
So he would listen "if". So, please, Ruben Amaro Jr., please get on the phone and tell them not to even think about it.
Howard has been one of the bright spots for the Phillies this spring. Still recovring from an awful achillies injury, Howard seems to literally be getting his feet back onto the ground. He is hitting .370 with three home runs and 10 RBI in 10 games. Yes, all 10 games.
Speaking of all 10 games (plus a matchup yesterday against the Dominican Republic in a World Baseball Classic scrimmage that doesn't count towards the total), it is time the Phillies give Ryan Howard a rest. While it is wonderful to see Howard get some regular play and get into the rhythm of playing through the grind of the regular season, Howard would get a break during the season.
The Major League season is not a straight 162 day schedule. Howard will not have to play every single day of the week all year. SO, please give him a break and avoid unnecessary injury. That reason is also why Howard should stay home from the World Baseball Classic.
Go send Adam LaRoche.