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WBC: DR Dominates, Cuba Slams To Advance, Italy Shocks Mexico

The World Baseball Classic continued with more first round games on Thursday as the powerful Dominican Republic lineup took care of Canada handily with a 9-2 victory in the classic opener.

The Dominican team took an early lead with four runs in the bottom of the second highlighted by a two-run home run off the bat of Welington Castillo, sandwiched by RBI singles off the bats of Gregory Polanco and Jose Bautista.

Canada scored a single run in the top of the third when Jonathan Malo scored on a balk, and then added another run in the fifth on an RBI double from Dalton Pompey.

But the Dominican team put the foot on the gas pedal and added a run in the bottom of the fifth, a three run bomb from Bautista on the sixth and for insurance, Jose Reyes lined out to second but a throwing error allowed Adrian Beltre to score from third.

On the mound Carlos Martinez tossed four innings, allowing just one run on three hits and struck out three.


Cuba 4, Australia 2

Facing elimination, both Cuba and Australia entered their game needed a win to advance to the second round of the classic. Both teams had chances to score through the first four innings but ran themselves out of opportunities to take a lead.

In the top of the fifth, Logan Wade hit an RBI single scoring Mitch Dening to finally break through the scoreless game and put Australia up 1-0. But in the bottom of the frame, Cuba would strike with a vengeance as  Alfredo Despaigne hit a grand slam over the left field fence putting Cuba up for good. Australia tried to make a comeback scoring a run in the seventh on Trent Oeltjen‘s solo shot and a run in the eighth on an RBI single from Dening, but would come up short and fall to Cuba 4-3 ending their classic hopes. Cuba joined Israel, Japan and the Netherlands in the second round starting on March 12th in Tokyo.

Italy 10, Mexico 9 – Walk-Off

Down four runs in the bottom of the 9th, Italy stormed back to shock Mexico and walk-off to a 10-9 victory.

Both teams added a run in the first on home runs, one by Mexico’s Esteban Quiroz and the other by Italy’s John Andreoli.

Then in the third, Mexico added a run in the third and two in the fourth to take a 4-1 lead. Quiroz got Mexico on the board again hitting an RBI double to right field scoring Sebastian Elizalde. Japhet Amador then hit a line drive home run over the left center field wall and Efren Navarro scored ahead of an Eizalde single adding to the lead.

In the bottom of the frame, Rob Segedin hot a two run home run and Chris Colabello a single shot tying the game at 4-4.

The Mexican team answered right back with three runs in the top of the fifth, highlighted by a bases loaded walk and a two RBI double of the bat of Luis Alfonso Cruz to go up 7-4.

But Team Italy would continue to chip away at the lead and stay close as Drew Butera homered in the fifth inning to keep Italy within striking distance at 7-5.

Mexico looking to secure a first game victory, added a run in the top of the seventh when Elizade singled scoring Amador.

But this night would belong to a resilient Italy team as they scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth to walk-off Mexico. Alex Liddi doubled home two runs, Brandon Nimmo singled home a run and Andreoli singled off the second baseman’s glove allowing the tying and winning runs to score on the same play, stealing game one from Mexico.

David is the Co-Founder and Executive Editor of Legends On Deck®, as well as a Co-Host on Legends On Deck Podcast. David was a Senior Editor for, and Contributor for that spanned from 2010 to 2014. David made his MLB Debut as a writer in June 2014, while covering the NY Mets at Citi Field, for David also coaches baseball for ages 13-15, a Babe Ruth League team in his local community. David's passion is coaching the game he loves to the future Legends of Tomorrow as well as making available a website that people can have fun sharing and reading. David is also passionate about his career as a Mortgage Loan Officer which allows him to help many families reach their dreams of owning a home. Connect with David via his Social Media pages as he loves to chat all about baseball.

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