The U.S. got their revenge for the embarrassing loss they suffered to Canada three years ago in the WBC with a 6-5 win in Toronto yesterday. Kevin Youkilis, Adam Dunn and Brian McCann all went deep for the US, and it was a terrific game played before more than 42,000 fans.
Jake Peavy looked shaky over the first three innings as Canada took an early lead. But the homers put the U.S. in the lead, which expanded to 6-4 by the ninth. But Canada wouldn't go quietly, as they scored a run off J.J. Putz in the ninth before he got the last out with the tying run on second.
The U.S. plays Venezuela today at Toronto. They defeated Italy, 7-0, yesterday, and the winner of today's game qualifies for the second round. The Netherlands shocked the baseball world by defeating heavily favored Dominican Republic, 3-2, in San Juan yesterday. The Dutch scored three runs in the first inning, but since they had Sidney Ponson pitching for them, you figured they'd tee off on him with their All-Star lineup. But he pitched surprisingly well over four innings. Pedro Martinez pitched three solid innings in relief for the DR, allowing just one hit. (I believe it was his first relief appearance since Game 7 of the 2004 ALCS. Remember that night?) But it was the Netherlands who stole the show. (The announcers on ESPN were comparing it to the US win over the Russians in Olympic hockey in 1980. Big upset? Sure. But I don't know if I'd go that far. Most of the Dutch players are professionals.) Manager Felipe Alou of the DR said after the game, "We should have beat these guys 9-0."
Sounds like his boys were a little overconfident, no?
The DR gets a chance to right their ship today with their second game, against Panama. If they lose today, they go home.