Whitt returns to manage Team Canada

Larry Walker also on staff for World Baseball Challenge

Baseball Canada is turning to some familiar faces for its coaching staff at the 2013 World Baseball Classic.

Manager Ernie Whitt will return to the post he has held at the first two editions of the tournament in 2006 and 2009.

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"I am extremely honoured and excited to return as manager for Canada at the upcoming World Baseball Classic," Whitt said Wednesday in a release. "I look forward to working with many familiar faces on our coaching staff and wearing the Canadian colours once again."

The former big-league catcher leads a staff that includes hitting coach/first-base coach Larry Walker, third-base coach Tim Leiper, pitching coach Denis Boucher and coach/national teams director Greg Hamilton. They helped guide the Canadian team to victory at the WBC qualifier last September in Germany.

Joining the team for the main tournament in March are bullpen/pitching coach Paul Quantrill and coach Stubby Clapp.

Quantrill, who spent 14 years in the major leagues, was the bullpen coach for Canada at the 2009 tournament.

Clapp, who played 18 years of pro baseball, made his Canadian coaching debut at the 2011 IBAF World Cup in Panama. Canada won bronze at the tournament.

"I am thrilled with the coaching staff we have assembled for the World Baseball Classic," Hamilton said. "All members of our staff have represented Baseball Canada in the past which speaks to their commitment and dedication to our program."

Japan won the inaugural World Baseball Classic in 2006 and successfully defended its title in 2009. Canada did not make it to the second round at either event.

Among the players in the running to play for Canada are Seattle Mariners outfielder Michael Saunders, who hails from Victoria, and Courtenay native Taylor Green, an infielder for the Milwaukee Brewers.

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