March 14, 2013 / 1:02 AM / 6 years ago

Top prospect Profar joining Netherlands for WBC semis

Texas Rangers' Adrian Beltre (L) celebrates with Jurickson Profar (R) after a ten inning, 4-2 win over the Tampa Bay Rays during a MLB American League baseball game in St. Petersburg, Florida, September 8, 2012. REUTERS/Steve Nesius

(Reuters) - Infielder Jurickson Profar, the top-rated prospect in Major League Baseball, has been added to the Netherlands team for the championship round of the World Baseball Classic starting on Sunday in San Francisco.

The 20-year-old, who had been at spring training with the Texas Rangers trying to make their Opening Day roster, replaced infielder Yurendell De Caster, who has a strained left foot, tournament organizers said.

The Netherlands and two-times reigning champions Japan have already qualified for the semi-finals. The other two semi-finalists will come from Pool 2 which includes the United States, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Italy.

Profar, a native of Curacao, split the 2012 season between Double-A Frisco and the Rangers. With Frisco he hit .281 with 14 home runs, 62 runs batted in and 16 stolen bases in 126 games before joining Texas for nine games at the end of the season.

Reporting by Larry Fine in New York, Editing by Peter Rutherford

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