Published: Sun, March 19, 2017
Electronics | By Jesus Weaver

WBC 2017 GameThread: USA vs Dominican Republic from Petco Park

WBC 2017 GameThread: USA vs Dominican Republic from Petco Park

The two then pulled a double steal. Tyler Clippard began his second inning of work in the seventh holding a 4-2 lead.

That potential pop means the Americans suddenly become far scarier as a semifinal matchup with Japan looms Tuesday at Dodger Stadium. US would hold the Venezuelan team to two runs the rest of the game, allowing Adam Jones and Eric Hosmer to homer the team to victory in the eighth inning. All Machado could do was tip his cap to his friend. The Dominican got two runs before Duffy got two outs, and Duffy righted himself to get the next 11 outs without giving up another run to a frightening lineup.

Unlike last Saturday's game when Team USA blew a 5-0 lead to the Dominican Republic, the American bullpen was able to get out of any trouble it found itself in.

But this victory puts them back in the driver's seat as they will enter the final day of the second round action tied for second with the loser of Friday's US versus Puerto Rico contest. It lost to Japan in 2009. Molina tagged and beat the throw to third but was tagged out when he came off the back, blunting the rally.

The Dominicans also got some nice pitching in a 3-0 victory Thursday night that pushed Venezuela to the brink of elimination.

In left field, Christian Yelich was unable to duplicate that catch on Cano's drive to left field. Nolan Arenado has won four straight Gold Gloves with Colorado, but his uncharacteristic throwing error gave Puerto Rico two insurance runs in the sixth. Again, this game will determine the fourth and final team to reach the championship round. Carlos Santana then singled in Cano to give the Dominican Republic an early first inning 2-0 lead.

Offensively, the US has relied on San Francisco Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford (.455 BA) and Miami Marlins left field Chrisitan Yelich (.429 BA) to get on base, while Kansas City Royals Eric Hosmer has helped put points on the board with a team-high four RBIs. Crawford threw out Nelson Cruz trying to score on Starling Marte's grounder, though.

The Dominicans had three more scoring chances but failed each time. After Gregory Polanco singled, Welington Castillo doubled to put two in scoring position with none out. U.S. relief pitcher Pat Neshek worked out of the jam.

The evening was so exciting that Leyland, the 72-year-old manager, pumped his fist toward the crowd after the game.

Team USA is sending Danny Duffy to the mound for the start in this one. If one struck out, so did the other. He pitched four and 1/3 innings, striking out six and allowing four hits.

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