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World Baseball Classic 2017: Projecting Tournament Favorites, Dark Horses

March is an important month for baseball fans. Not only does it signal the beginning of the exhibition season—and draw us ever closer to Opening Day—but every four years, it provides us the opportunity to see the best players in the world compete in a 16-team tournament, the World Baseball Classic.

While some fans bemoan the fact that the tournament cuts into spring training, there's no denying that the action on the field is both exciting and entertaining. That's especially true as teams advance into the later rounds, consummating with the Championship Round at Dodger Stadium, which begins on March 20.

Final rosters aren't due for another few weeks, so much can change between now and then. But based on the players we know are participating, the competition teams will be facing in their respective pools in the first round and how they've fared in the past, we can begin to affix labels to some of these clubs.

What follows is a look at four favorites—and four dark horses—in the fourth installment of the WBC.

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Poll

Best of the American League:

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