PEORIA,AZ-MARCH 5: Chase Headley #7 of the San Diego Padres hits in a Spring Training game against the Los Angeles Diodgers at the Peoria Sports Complex on March 5, 2013 at Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Andy Hayt/San Diego Padres/Getty Images)
Padres third baseman Chase Headley could play for Team USA in the semi-finals of the World Baseball Classic.
Team USA takes on Puerto Rico Friday and if they win they will advance to the semi-finals and Headley will leave Peoria to join them.
David Wright, Mets third-baseman, will not play against Puerto Rico because of a strain on the left side of his rib cage. Wright scratched before Thursday’s 3-1 loss to the Dominican Republic.
Team USA is not confident Wright will be able to return, should the team advance.
“I’m not really counting on it,” manager Joe Torres told reporters. “Whatever he has is going to take more than a few days, I would think.”
Headley is in the line-up for the Padres game against the Dodgers Friday, but as is status quo for spring training, will likely retire to the clubhouse after a few innings to let Minor League players get some at-bats. There he can watch and cheer on the USA to victory.
Teammate and reliever Luke Gregerson is already with Team USA and has pitched two innings with two strikeouts.
Whoever wins between USA-Puerto Rico will join Japan, the Netherlands, and the Dominican Republic in the semis. The Dominican Republic is the two-time reigning champions.
The semis will be Sunday and Monday in San Francisco and Tuesday will be the championship game.