World Baseball Classic Recap: Team USA Loses; Four Teams Advance

Some teams went home after Sunday’s action. Here’s a recap, along with today’s schedule. There are a total of 20 games left to play in the tournament, which wraps up on March 21st

Italy won 7-1 over the Netherlands. All five teams in the pool went 2-2, so they decided it by figuring out the two “lowest runs allowed per defensive out”. Italy and Cuba advanced, while the Netherlands, Panama and Chinese Taipei are done.

Tsung-Che Cheng went 5-for-15, with a triple, walk and three RBI singles. Antwone Kelly tossed a scoreless inning in his only work. Josh Palacios went 1-for-9. He pinch-ran on Sunday, but did not bat or play defense. They will all return to the Pirates. Jeffrey Passantino and Alessandro Ercolani advance with Italy. Neither pitched in the first round.

Canada beat up on Great Britain with an 18-8 win. Chavez Young had a busy day, going 1-for-2 with two walks, three steals and three runs scored. One of those runs/steals was a steal of home. He went 1-for-4 in the opener on Saturday.

As for the games with no Pirates seeing action….

Team USA lost 11-5 to Mexico. Japan beat Australia 7-1 to give them a perfect 4-0 in their pool. Israel defeated Nicaragua 3-1. Venezuela won 9-6 over Puerto Rico. Australia won 8-3 over the Czech Republic in the late game.

With the win, both Japan and Australia advance to the next round. Czech Republic, China and Korea were eliminated, though the latter two still have one game left. No Pirates were/are on any of these teams.

Today’s Schedule

All times Eastern

Korea vs China 6 AM

Dominican Republic vs Nicaragua 12 PM

Colombia vs Great Britain 3 PM

Israel vs Puerto Rico 7 PM

Canada vs USA 10 PM

Roansy Contreras is listed as the starter for the DR today, but the team announced that he was pitching Tuesday. So at least check the game today if you want to see him pitch, just in case something changed in the rotation. If he doesn’t pitch today, that just means he is starting tomorrow as previously planned.

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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So is Team USA in danger of being eliminated?

I just read an article about Team USA and Mike Trout being the guy getting everybody to join. The rotation / pitching looks a little hollow. But the cumulative payroll of the team is something like $1.3 billion. Which is staggering.

I find it kind of ironic that Trout (alongside many others including Betts) didn’t want to play for the US last time. AND THEY WON that year. And now they’re all playing and it doesn’t seem like our team is as good as the last time.

2017 WBC USA Roster had Andrew Mccutchen, Josh Harrison, Mark Melancon, JA Happ, and Chris Archer. And the manager was Jim Leyland. How about that?

Last edited 10 days ago by phieralph

With 4 or 6 teams per pool, they wouldn’t need the silly tie-breaker.


You’d think MLB would have figured out something other than lowest runs allowed. Five teams tied at 2 – 2, and three get eliminated! Settle the dang thing on the field…….that’s what everyone came to do! Smh.


Super great experience for all of these guys to get to play on this level, whether they get game time or even just the chance to rub shoulders with other solid players. Cheng finds a way to perform consistently, which is my takeaway from our prospects in the WBC so far


Nice game by Chavez Young w GB. Robbie Glenndenning hit a couple moonshots for Australia, I’m hoping he gets a chance with KC.

Bucs'N'Pucks (Jeff Reed)

Wait a second. Is Passantino actually with team Italy? Cause I was definitely talking to him just last week, either Tuesday or Thursday. One of the two. I think Thursday?

Bucs'N'Pucks (Jeff Reed)

That makes sense. I went back to my photos to see it was Thursday, cause I had taken a picture of JC Flowers in the bullpen for Anthony, and Passantino was sitting next to him.

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