Team USA finishes the Classic with a 6-2 record overall, but it’s the final three games that will define this run.
Great pitching beat great hitting, as it nearly always seems to do.
That opened the scoring for Team USA. Lugo was the first to crack when he gave up a two-run home run to Tiger’s Ian Kinsler (who, after controversial comments were released earlier in the day, was stone-faced around the bases). Andrew McCutchen had a run-scoring single as well later in the inning, to give the US a four-run lead. Kinsler flied out to end the inning. Christian Yelich came to the plate and lined one up the middle to make it 3-0. They tagged on another two runs in the sixth, and were able to withstand a late rally by the USA.
Had it been Lucroy running to first, he just might have gotten him.
The U.S. tacked on another run on Giancarlo Stanton’s RBI single off Hiram Burgos past diving shortstop Francisco Lindor.
Tuesday’s game was played for the most part in a steady rain that made for a soggy infield and cooler than normal southern California temperatures.
Accepting the gleaming silver trophy from baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, manager Leyland told the crowd, “This is for the men and women who serve our country”. He’ll get into the game with everything he’s got, including outward emotion. Puerto Rico has now been the runner-up in two consecutive tournaments.
Sam Dyson, Pat Neshek and David Robertson each threw a scoreless inning to complete the United States’ three-hit shutout.
It marked the USA’s first appearance in the tournament finals and the third country to win in the tournament’s four editions. Since the launch of this tournament, Japan has pretty much been the team to beat, so the United States edging Japan on Tuesday night to clinch a berth in the championship game was a reason to celebrate alone. It was a deserved win.
Japan’s lone run came off a 376-foot solo homer to right field by Ryosuke Kikuchi that tied the game 1-1 in the sixth. “I hope they say yes”.
The World Baseball Classic has made baseball great again (sorry) for the past few week with non-stop, heart-pounding action.
Correa suggested the weight both teams place on the WBC might have led to the misunderstanding.
Baseball fans in Puerto Rico have been head-over-heels excited about their team’s run in the WBC.
Copper blond, platinum blond, golden blond – all shades of blond (even burnt orange) are turning heads in a USA territory where the majority of men have thick, dark hair and are now getting teased about looking like Ken dolls.