Japan opened up the 2009 World Baseball Classic with a 4-0 win over team China.
Surprisingly, the Japanese team wasn’t led by superstar Ichiro Suzuki—who was 0-for-5, leaving five runners on base—instead strong pitching lifted the squad. The most exciting moment of the game was a two-run homer hit by Japan’s third baseman Shuichi Murata.
Both sides had strong pitching—only allowing five hits a piece—but China’s fielding may have well cost them the game. China’s starter Yu Darvish (above) went four no-hit innings, with three strikeouts and just one walk.
Box Score: Japan 4, China 0
W: Yu Darvish (1-0)
L: Li Chenhao (0-1)
HR: Shuichi Murata (1)
MLB Players: Japan—Ichiro Suzuki 0-5; Kosuke Fukudome 0-0, 4 BB, 1 R
Japan: March 7th vs Chinese Taipei/Korea Winner
China: March 6th vs Chinese Taipei/Korea Loser