Archer won't rejoin U.S. at WBC: I was told I'm 'no longer needed'

Chris Archer, who returned to Tampa Bay Rays camp after firing four perfect innings for the United States in its first-round victory over Colombia at the World Baseball Classic, won't be rejoining his countrymen for the tournament's championship round, as he'd expected, having received a message Sunday morning informing him he's "no longer needed."

According to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, even before the United States had secured a semi-final berth with a thrilling 6-3 victory over the Dominican Republic on Saturday night, Archer had booked a flight to Los Angeles to join his fellow Americans for the championship round. Due to circumstances "out of (his) control," however, the 28-year-old will have to watch his countrymen take on Japan on Tuesday night on television, instead.

A victory lands the United States a spot in the winner-take-all championship game against either Puerto Rico – still undefeated in the tournament – or the Netherlands.

Earlier this week, after returning to Port Charlotte, Fla. following his sparkling performance against the Colombians, Archer gushed about representing his country at the WBC, describing the experience as "some of the most fun (he's) ever had playing baseball."

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