Tag Archives: Japan

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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The moral importance of the World Baseball Classic

Reflections by FIDEL CASTRO

IN THE early days of the Revolution, the Olympics were an event for amateurs.

When the concepts of developed capitalism managed to infiltrate the Olympics, sports stopped being a health and education issue, which had been its main goals throughout history.

The only country in the world where that character prevailed was Cuba, which for many years won the highest number of gold medals per inhabitant. Continue reading

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Fidel Castro: A fair and constructive criticism

reflexiones-fidelI TRY TO FOLLOW the details about the Baseball Classic through our national television.

The game between the teams of Japan and South Korea, Cuba’s two strongest rivals, which was played today, Monday morning, was 1 to 0 in favour of South Korea when Japan had only two more chances at bat.

The dangerous and emblematic Ichiro, who had failed three times, connected with a single. Continue reading

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Home run king Oh a champion once again

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WBC.2006.Japan.Sadaharu Oh in air

(Mar. 23) – The Asahi Shimbun – AS HE SENT the Cuban baseball delegation off to the World Baseball Classic, Cuban President Fidel Castro encouraged players to go forward, “always, until victory,” citing the words of his ally, revolutionary leader Ernesto Che Guevara (1928-1967). Continue reading

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Quality, sportsmanship earns tournament title of Classic

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“You know who ended up winning? Baseball did, sports did, sportsmanship did,” Velez said. “What you saw here tonight, we have to do this more frequently.” By JEFF BLAIR

SAN DIEGO (23 March 2006) — The organizers of the World Baseball Classic knew they’d hit on a winning formula the second Team USA was eliminated from the event and Alex Rodriguez talked for 45 minutes about what he’ll do differently in 2009.

It was a refrain heard elsewhere throughout the event, which culminated Monday night with Japan’s 10-6 win over Cuba at Petco Park in San Diego. Continue reading

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Japan hails world baseball champions, criticizes domination by U.S. imperialism

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People gather to get extra newspapers reporting Japan’s victory at the World Baseball Classic championship

People gather to get extra newspapers reporting Japan’s victory at the World Baseball Classic championship

TOKYO (22 March 2006) – (AFP) JAPAN heaped praise on its baseball team for its come-from-behind victory in the World Baseball Classic and called for a bigger Japanese say in the US-dominated sport.

Japan, which rarely tops international competitions and was embarrassed by a one-medal showing at the Turin Olympics, remained abuzz a day after beating Cuba 10-6 to capture the first-of-its-kind global baseball title. Continue reading

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