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WBC Roundup: Japan Makes Czechs Beg For Mercy; Chinese Taipei Tops Netherlands 9-5

 Leif Skodnick  |    Mar 11th, 2023 3:04pm EST

Staff Reports

Japan 10, Czech Republic 2: Japan improved to 3-0 in Pool B, defeating the Czech Republic 10-2. Boston Red Sox outfielder Masataka Yoshida had two hits, three RBI and a run scored for Japan and Censure Kondoh had two doubles and two runs scored. Young NPB sensation Roki Sasaki threw 3.2 innings, allowing two hits and one run. Japan will finish out pool play Sunday morning at 6 a.m. ET against Australia, while the Czech Republic, now eliminated at 0-3, will face Australia at 11 p.m. Sunday night.

Panama 2, Italy 0: Panama closed out Pool A play with a 2-0 win, with four pitchers combining to scatter five hits and three walks across the game to shut out Italy. Starter Harold Arauz went four innings, allowing two hits, one walk, and striking out three. Jose Ramos hit a solo homer in the top of the second that gave Panama a lead they wouldn’t relinquish. Panama finishes Pool D play at 2-2 and will have to wait for pool play to finish to determine whether or not they will advance, while Italy drops to 1-2 with the loss. Italy will play the Netherlands at 7 a.m. ET Sunday, and will need to win to have a slim chance of advancing out of Pool A.

Australia 12, China 2 (7 Inn.): Australia had three runs hop across the plate in the bottom of the first and never looked back, defeating China 12–2 in seven innings, with the game ending due to the World Baseball Classic’s mercy rules. The green and gold scored 12 runs on 12 hits and left an astonishing 15 runners on base. Four Australian pitchers combined to hold China to just five hits and two runs, and the loss has eliminated China from the 2023 World Baseball Classic. Australia improved to 2-0 with the win and are tied atop Pool B with Japan, who they will Sunday morning at 6 a.m. ET on Fox Sports 1. China will face Korea at 6 a.m. ET Monday on Fox Sports 2.

Chinese Taipei 9, The Netherlands 5: Chinese Taipei pinned a 9-5 loss on the Netherlands, dropping the Dutch to 2-1 in Pool A. Boston Red Sox infielder Yu Chang hit two homers and drove in four runs to power the Chinese Taipei offense, while five Dutch pitchers combined to allow five runs on six hits, walking six and striking out nine. The Netherlands will close out pool play against Italy at 7 a.m. Sunday on Fox Sports 2. Chinese Taipei, 2-1, will finish pool play at 11 p.m. Saturday against Cuba on Fox Sports 2.

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Leif Skodnick