After suffering a 6-5 loss to Puerto Rico on Friday night, Team USA will play the Dominican Republic on Saturday night with the victor advancing to the semifinals of the World Baseball Classic, and the loser going home.
On Saturday, Puerto Rico faces Venezuela and the Dominican Republic faces the United States. Japan and Puerto Rico are the only undefeated teams left in the tournament, with Puerto Rico putting its record on the line Saturday against Venezuela.
Now, Team USA must beat the Dominican Republic on Saturday to avoid elimination on its home soil.
“We’re going to have a hard time if we don’t really tighten that piece up”, Venezuela manager Omar Vizquel said. Perez predictably faltered against the hottest team in the tournament, loading the bases before finally recording the game’s first out. The San Diego Padres pitcher allowed three hits, one run and walked three.
Crawford almost played the hero in the ninth inning as the USA rallied against Puerto Rico’s closer, Seattle Mariners pitcher Edwin Diaz. A runner was held at third base while running from first on a double into the left-field corner with no outs in both the second and fifth.
Starter Jose De Leon pitched 2 2/3 scoreless innings for the win. They opened the game with six consecutive singles before Rosario made the first out with a sacrifice fly, which turned into a double play when Yadier Molina was unable to keep his foot on third base.
Team USA’s loss sets up a winner-take-all contest with the Dominican Republic to determine who gets the final spot in the championship round. Stanton singled and scored in a two-run third inning and hit a long homer in the fourth.
The Dominican Republic took a step toward a repeat title in the World Baseball Classic thanks to impressive home runs by Nelson Cruz and Gregory Polanco.
Puerto Rico and the USA have developed a nice little rivalry, having split two games in each of the last two WBCs. Every starter had at least one hit, while eight starters had at least one run scored and seven had at least one RBI. Right fielder Mike Aviles drove in two runs in the inning.
The U.S. won the the first 2013 matchup, 7-1, behind left-hander Gio Gonzalez and a five-RBI game by David Wright, but Puerto Rico won the one that really mattered. That made the score 4-2. Was the game truly that important, or was Puerto Rico motivated by the man on the mound? They outscored their Pool F opponents 22-8.
The victor on Saturday finishes Pool F at 2-1, which will be enough to advance to the semifinals.
Dominican Republic beat the Americans in the first round of the tournament 5-7 on March 11th so Team USA will have to do better on the mound to have a chance in this rematch. Dominican Republic World Baseball Classic Pool F finale, with the victor advancing and the loser going home, see the streaming information at the bottom of this page.
Pool F Game 6: United States vs.
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