Did you guys watch the Netherlands vs. Dominican Replublic elimination game last night? The game went scoreless into extra innings. The D.R. got a run in the top of the 11th on a walk and a ball the right fielder lost in the lights that was ruled a triple. Then, with Carlos Marmol on the mound, three outs from elimination, the Netherlands’ sent up a pinch-hitter who led off with a double, moved to third on an out, and scored on a single by Gene Kingsale, the right fielder who lost the ball in the top of the inning. In checking Kingsale at first during the subsequent at-bat, Marmol threw wild to first, sending Kingsale, the winning run, all the way to third due to the large foul territory at Hiram Bithorn Stadium. Marmol struck out the batter for the second out, but with two strikes, Yurendell de Caster hit a cue shot down the first base line that defensive replacement Willy Aybar booted, allowing de Caster to reach safely just ahead of Aybar’s throw to Marmol at first and Kingsale to come home with the winning, and clinching run.
My heart is still racing. I haven’t been that wrapped up in a game since the 2004 ALCS.
Oh yeah. Blah blah Yankees blah 7-1.
L – Brett Gardner (CF)
L – Johnny Damon (LF)
R – Xavier Nady (RF)
L – Hideki Matsui (DH)
R – Cody Ransom (3B)
R – Jose Molina (C)
L – Juan Miranda (1B)
R – Angel Berroa (SS)
S – Ramiro Peña (2B)
Subs: Eduardo Nuñez (SS), Kevin Russo (3B), Jesus Montero (C), Shelley Duncan (RF), Austin Jackson (CF), John Rodriguez (LF), Kevin Cash (DH)
Pitchers: Joba Chamberlain, Phil Coke, Kei Igawa, Christian Garcia, Anthony Claggett
Opposition: The non-WBC Reds
A three-run homer by Shelley Duncan off Jordan Smith in his only at-bat and a solo shot by Juan Miranda (1-for-3) off Nick Masset. Hideki Matsui doubled and walked in three trips. Ramiro Peña doubled and singled in three trips.
Who Pitched Well:
Joba Chamberlain, finally. After failing to reach 90 miles per hour in his first start and walking four of five batters and not getting an out in his last outing, Joba hit 96 mph, struck out three and walked none in three innings. That he also gave up a run on three hits (one a Chris Dickerson triple) was no big deal. Talking to Alex on the phone this evening I said Joba would have to pitch three solid innings for me to get over the concerns I had following his first two outings. Well, he did, so I’m over it.
Kei Igawa pitched two perfect innings and struck out two. He hasn’t given up a run all spring and would be pitching his way into the long-man race if not for the fact that he’s Kei Igawa. Anthony Claggett pitched a perfect ninth striking out two. Christian Garcia pitched around a walk in the eighth and struck out two. Phil Coke struck out three in two scoreless innings, giving up just three harmless singles.
Brett Gardner went 2-for-3, pushing his spring average back over .400. Xavier Nady broke his string of extra-base hits with a single in two trips, though he still hasn’t drawn a walk. Phil Coke dropped his spring ERA blew 2.00 with two scoreless innings.
Francisco Cervelli is on his way back to camp as Italy was eliminated from the WBC by Venezuela. Cervelli was praised for his intensity, leadership, and work behind the plate for Team Italy, but went just 1-for-7 with a walk and a strikeout. I don’t doubt that Cervelli could catch in the majors right now, but from what I’ve seen of him, he has some work to do on his hitting.
Robinson Cano and Damaso Marte are also on their way home due to the Netherlands stunning and thrilling upset. Cano went 3-for-13, all singles, with a walk and a K. Marte pitched a pair of scoreless innings, striking out two and allowing only a single.
Derek Jeter is thus the only Yankee remaining in the WBC. He and the U.S. will play Venzuela to determine the Round 2 seeding tonight at 6:30. If they lose, they’re realy going to screw up my plans for Saturday.