baseball

U.S. routs Puerto Rico 8-0 to win WBC

13 Comments
By BETH HARRIS

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13 Comments
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Can you imagine if the US actually fielded their best players?

Rotation: Kershaw, Syndergaard, Bumgarner, Scherzer with Sale, Kluber, Arrieta and Strasburg in relief.. Wow.

This was America's middle of the pack all star team. Not even close to what we could put out. (Trout, Betts, Bryant, Harper, Rizzo)

0 ( +3 / -3 )

About time the US showed up at the WBC. It should make all the other hugely underperforming countries (Korea) raise the bar next time. You never know, Korea could even get out of the first stage games.

Not guaranteed that the "1st choice" all-star team would do any better. Its a team game after all and this "middle pack" may be the best team.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

So, to add on my post yesterday, except for their 1st game against Puerto Rico (more specifically just one inning --the 1st inning-- when Stroman gave up all his 4 runs), the US starting pitching has been pretty good:

vs. Colombia - SP Archer - 4 Innings Pitched, 0 Hits, 0 Earned Run

vs. Dominican Rep. - SP Stroman - 4.2 IP, 3 H, 0 ER

vs. Canada - SP Duffy - 4 IP, 2 H, 0 ER

vs. Venezuela - SP Smyly - 4.2 IP, 3 H, 0 ER (plus 1 unearned)

vs. Puerto Rico - SP Stroman - 4.2 IP, 8 H, 4 ER

vs. Dominican Rep. - SP Duffy - 4 IP, 6 H, 1 ER (plus 1 unearned)

vs. Japan - SP Roark - 4 IP, 2 H, 0 ER

vs. Puerto Rico - SP Stroman - 6 IP, 1 H, 0 ER

In the Final, Stroman even took a no-hitter into the 7th inning. The US SP ERA in the tournament is a minuscule 1.25. The US defeated the only 2 undefeated teams in the tournament: a 6-0 Japan team that avg. 7.67 runs per game (and limited them to 1 run), then a 7-0 Puerto Rico team that avg. 7.86 runs per game (and shut them out in the rematch).

But get this: even with all these, the US never won neither of their pool groups (2nd in the first round pool and 2nd again in the second round pool) due to a Dominican Republic 8th-inning comeback win against them and that Puerto Rico 1st-inning surge then holding them off. Plus, the US team didn't have the more renowned "big guys" with them as well. And the US public still mostly don't care about the tournament, lol

(Being undefeated in the pool rounds is not a good omen. The only undefeated team to win the tournament was the Dominican Republic four years ago. All the other undefeated teams didn't go on to finish as champions.)

Not guaranteed that the "1st choice" all-star team would do any better. Its a team game after all and this "middle pack" may be the best team.

That too - a best team makeup often trumps a team made up of best players (although baseball is more individualistic than other team games - most of the time, it boils down to 1-on-1, a pitcher vs. a batter)

Also, when everyone plays to their hardest (like during the league season), then those Tier 1, Tier 2, Tier 3, etc. abilities matter more. But in a tournament when it's not guaranteed that everyone plays to their 100%, then it becomes how hard someone plays matter more.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

USA ! USA ! USA !

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Actually baseball is not a team sport at all, except partially in fielding. Stroman? Are you kidding me he is not even a top 100 player. Kershaw as ace with Harper and Trout would be 10X the team that we put out.

Don't give me the team game stuff. The one point that makes sense is the attitude and want part. These guys sure did want it, even though they are not our talented ones.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Well this 8-0 thrashing puts yesterday's J 2-1 loss into perspective. Not saying Japan would have smashed Puerto Rico but clearly they have enough quality to win this type of games.

Hope J selectors will have a close look at what went wrong in the sf and see playing it (too) safe was probably not the best option. Have a crack ffs!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Dango: about all MLB players are in Arizona to play pre season games in Cactus teams games? Yesterday, Trout homered but Angeles lost to Red. Less than 40000 people might sound small but in this hot day, many LA pope went to watch WBC games.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Too bad the losing semifinalists don't get to play a 3rd place game.

I guess that's to minimize the possibility of injury arising from essentially a meaningless game and getting the players back to their spring training teams asap, especially those who have to travel far.

But that also makes teams coming from abroad going to the US for possibly just 1 game. So, local people get to see them only once, and some players hoping to get to the MLB may be seen by team scouts only for that 1 time.

Stroman? Are you kidding me he is not even a top 100 player.

He is considered Toronto's ace though, so depends how good Toronto's pitching staff is considered.

Don't give me the team game stuff. The one point that makes sense is the attitude and want part. These guys sure did want it, even though they are not our talented ones.

Sometimes, the players lower on their league team priority lists are the ones who won't mind playing harder in this tournament since they have less to lose and more to gain (compared to the players higher on the lists) by playing harder despite risking injury.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

He is considered Toronto's ace though

no he is not. Estrada is. Stroman is 4th in Toronto's rotation behind Estrada, Sanchez and Happ.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The tournament should be revamped and rescheduled so that the best American players can play. Knockout style play does not really reflect a countries strength as in one game, one pitcher can basically win it. Also due to only a few countries being at world class level, a pre-tournament should take place with countries like Canada, Israel, Netherlands.....

The US, Japan receive exemptions to the semi-finals. The other B-nations all play off in the pre-tournament, from which 2 qualify. Then hold best of 7 semi-finals, and finals. This will reveal a true champion and will also reveal the true depth of talent not available in a one off game......oh yeah...almost forgot, Donald Trump pays for it all, under the guise of a newlt formed Orwellian-style Ministry of Culture.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Congratulations Team USA on the WBC title!

And now let's get on with the real baseball seasons in the U.S., Japan, Korea et al.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

goldorak: "Not saying Japan would have smashed Puerto Rico but clearly they have enough quality to win this type of games."

Ummm... clearly they don't, since they lost.

Good on the US for finally winning on their own soil, and with a team of second-stringers vs. the best other nations had to offer, for the most part.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

and with a team of second-stringers

more like 4th stringers

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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