Tag Archives: Chinese Taipei

WBC Report 4: Cuban ‘Classic’ miracle now possible

Outfielder Yasmany Tomas #27 of Cuba hits a three run home run in the top half of the sixth inning during the World Baseball Classic Second Round Pool 1 game between Chinese Taipei and Cuba at Tokyo Dome on March 9, 2013 in Tokyo, Japan | Koji Watanabe/Getty Images AsiaPac

utfielder Yasmany Tomas #27 of Cuba hits a three run home run in the top half of the sixth inning during the World Baseball Classic Second Round Pool 1 game between Chinese Taipei and Cuba at Tokyo Dome on March 9, 2013 in Tokyo, Japan | Koji Watanabe/Getty Images AsiaPac

By PETER C BJARKMAN*

WBC.2013.logoMarch 10, 2013 (from Tokyo, Japan) – FOR THE SECOND TIME in seven years Team Cuba now sits poised to pull off a World Baseball Classic “miracle run” designed once more to underscore the true quality of post-aluminum-bat and post-amateur-era island baseball. It now all comes down to one final rematch on Monday night with either the Dutch or Japanese (it will be the Jaanese– ed.) – this time with a trip to San Francisco as the ultimate prize. One more victory and Cuba will join Japan and Korea as the only three clubs so far to reach the final championship round of the MLB Classic on multiple occasions. Continue reading

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WBC Report 3: Dutch prove Cuba’s tough nut to crack

By PETER C. BJARKMAN*

WBC.2013.logo(March 9, 2013 from Tokyo, Japan) – IF TEAM CUBA at least temporarily dispelled one myth in Fukuoka on Wednesday (that they could perhaps never learn to hit funky Japanese pitching), they nonetheless failed miserably on Friday afternoon to dismiss yet another pervasive theme (that their new insurmountable hurdle seems to be the talent-rich forces of the Dutch national team). In Panama in September 2011 a Cuban squad managed by Alfonso Urquiola went down harmlessly twice against the Dutch forces (their only two tournament defeats) and thus squandered an opportunity to reclaim an IBAF world title during the final edition of the now-suspended Baseball World Cup. In a Taiwan tune-up late last month Cuban bats were again effectively blanketed by Dutch pitching. At the 2010 Haarlem Baseball Week a Cuban B squad managed by Germán Mesa suffered through the only “mercy rule” drubbing (10-0) suffered by a top-level Cuban outfit in more than four full decades. In brief, The Netherlands (now featuring a host of young big league prospects like Kalian Sams, Andrelton Simmos and Jonathan Schoop) has recently become just as large a thorn in the Cuban side as have the two-time WBC champion Japanese. Continue reading

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