Cuba again entered the top eight. Author: Roberto Morejon Rodriguez/AIN
Half-dead, some even dead, the Cuban baseball team was resurrected with the much-desired and expected vigor, and apparently this energetic reaction pleased the stars who lined up to light the only possible path to the quarter-finals of the Fifth World Baseball Championship. Classical.
In the short dawn of this Sunday, Armando Johnson’s team played in a way that the national team had not seen for many years. Solid in the bat, flawless out of the box and sealed with a glove, and to unify these technical and tactical aspects, the mood is through the roof.
So, from the first inning against Chinese Taipei, they made it clear that if there were “coincidences” then, in order not to eliminate them prematurely, they are going to do their part in showing what this team is made of, made up of more than ever. before.
Those four runs in the opening chapter would have been enough for substantial success, but the blitz operation continued into the next inning to close the gap on quarter-final venue Tokyo, and even Miami, where the semi-finals and final would be played. . . .
Captain Alfredo Despain again silenced those who said it was a gift to include him in the roster and pushed the first two with tubi, and then Erisbel Arrubarrena hit the team’s first home run. It was a hit that wasn’t enough to drive the bank crazy.
Twice more Grillo threw the ball into the safety zone with strong contacts, which indicates his good form.
It was also a firewood match for Yoan Moncada who drew 4-3 including a full back stick and you couldn’t see him happier contributing to the team and the team happier celebrating his performance.
Yadir Drake, accustomed to giving 250 percent on the field, continued to hit hard and position his punches well, landing two punches for four hits on target, as did Roel Santos.
Such an offensive deployment supported the pitch that was Cuba’s mainstay in the tournament. But in this life-or-return game, he was even stronger. Although starter Elian Leyva (2.1 INN, 1H, 4K and 2BB) was forced out of the box due to third leg discomfort, the bullpen controlled a group of opponents who never found a way to heat up their bats.
Romero (2.2 INN, 1H, 4K) and Onelkis Garcia (2.0, 2K) took over the middle stage and comfortably passed the game to the Moynelo-Rydel tandem. At that moment, the die was cast.
Cuba won 7:1 and could begin to dream not only of the quarterfinals, but even a little further, since the opportunity to finish first in their group was undeniable. A five-fold draw never seen before was enough, and would it be the culmination of a series of random events? that they would complete a sharp turn in a group that seemed one in the middle of the competition but ended up being another.
Italy defeated the Netherlands (6-1) in the last match of the preliminary stage, and all teams finished with the same score of 2-2. As they distributed wins, the criterion for runs allowed between innings was appealed to the defense, and there Cuba achieved a better balance, and surprise: Italy was second. Goodbye tulips.
And now it’s supposed to be the least difficult game possible in Tokyo, no Japan, no eliminated Korea. It will be Australia, the enemy. Miami is closer. Since the first edition, Cuba has not reached the semi-finals of the Classic.
Source: Juventud Rebelde