World Baseball Classic: Evening Scores Update

Al Bello

In the Tokyo, the Pool A and B teams are in the middle of second round action today as Pool C and D teams continue their round one schedules in Puerto Rico and Arizona.

Cuba lives to play another day after breaking out the big guns on Team Taiwan and the Dominican Republic fights off a pesky and resilient Spanish club to put themselves on top of Pool C in today's early World Baseball Classic action.

Cuba 14, Chinese Taipei 0

The Cubans eliminated Chinese Taipei in dominant fashion in the late game last night Japanese local time which was the early morning game today for fans in the Western hemisphere. The Cuban offense found its power stroke after a surprising loss to the Netherlands in the first game of the second round. They hit four home runs and two doubles to force the end of the game after seven innings under the tournament's mercy rule. While the offense gave him plenty of room for error, Cuba's starting pitcher Danny Betancourt had little need for the cushion. The righty threw six scoreless innings allowing just three hits and two walks while striking out three to earn the win.

Cuba will face the loser of the game between the two winning teams from the second round, Japan and the Netherlands which will take place at 7:00 p.m. Japanese time, 6:00 a.m Eastern time.

Dominican Republic 6, Spain 3

The Dominican Republic got off to an early lead against the underdog Spanish team, scoring two runs in the second on a Nelson Cruz RBI single that scored Edwin Encarnacion and a Ricardo Nanita single that plated Cruz. They followed that up with a three-run third as Cruz and Yankees star Robinson Cano helped to chase Spanish starter Yoanner Negrin from the game. At that point, it appeared a rout of the young, largely unproven Spanish team would inevitably follow. However, Spain fought back against the MLB-stocked Dominican club, scraping out a run in the seventh and mounting a serious threat in the ninth against Rays closer Fernando Rodney. Spain's relief pitchers did an excellent job handling the powerful Dominican lineup to keep Team Spain in this contest. Seven relievers combined to pitch 6 2/3 innings and allowed just one run on five hits after Negrin left the game.

The win puts the Dominican Republic in good shape to advance to the second round, regardless of the result in their final round 1 game against Puerto Rico. Spain drops to 0-2 despite playing well above expectations. If Puerto Rico defeats Venezuela, Spain will be eliminated from the tournament, but they have done a great deal of good for the future of baseball in Spain by showing that they can truly compete against the best international baseball programs.

All World Baseball Classic Scores:

Cuba 14, Chinese Taipei 0

Dominican Republic 6, Spain 3

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