In a game that was more about pride, Puerto Rico won their final game in the second round of the World Baseball Classic, 13-2 over Venezuela. Puerto Rico remains undefeated as they face the Netherlands in LA in the semifinals. Venezuela dropped to 0-3 in the second round.
Puerto Rico loaded the bases in the first, but scored just one run on a ground out. However, they never looked back. They collected 17 hits, seven for extra bases. Every player had at least one hit. Kennys Vargas capped the scoring with a two-run home run off Chicago closer Hector Rondon in the ninth.
Former KC Royal Mike Aviles got his second start of the WBC (in right field) and went 4-for-5 with three RBIs and a run scored. Fellow former Royal Reymond Fuentes got the start in center field and went 1-for-3 with a double, an RBI, two walks, and two runs scored.
Venezuela collected just five hits, including a Rougned Odor two-run home run in the sixth. Alcides Escobar went 0-for-3 with a strikeout, as he will be returning to Surprise to rejoin the Royals.
Last night, Team USA won the rematch with the Dominican Republic, 6-3 to reach the WBC semis. They will now play Japan on Tuesday night at 9pm ET on MLB Network. The winner plays in Wednesday night’s final.
The DR took a 2-0 lead over Danny Duffy and the US in the very first inning. Robinson Cano doubled in a run and Carlos Santana singled in a run. Duffy wasn’t helped by a throwing error or his wild pitch. The DR had two runners in scoring position with no outs in the second, but Duffy rebounded to not allow a run.
The Dominicans had base runners in every inning against Duffy, but scored just those two first inning runs (4+IP, 6H, 2R, 0ER, BB, K). The only innings they did not have base runners were the last two innings.
The US tied the game in the third against DR starter (and former Royal) Ervin Santana. A ground out and an Ian Kinsler doubled knotted the game at 2-2. In the fourth, Giancarlo Stanton hit a two out, two-run home run to chase Santana from the game and give the US the lead.
In the seventh, Manny Machado hit what looked like a home run to cut the DR deficit to one run. However, his Baltimore teammate Adam Jones went halfway over the fence to rob the hit and set the crowd into a frenzy. It was a game-changing catch, as Cano followed with a solo homer.
Eric Hosmer went 1-for-3 with a run scored in the win.