World Baseball Classic 2013: Day 2 Results, Recap and Analysis
After a terrific Day 1 of action from the 2013 World Baseball Classic, the second day of the tournament provided baseball fans with just as much excitement and competition.
The first day of play saw Chinese Taipei flex its muscle, Japan stage a come-from-behind rally and Netherlands upset South Korea.
What did Day 2 have in store for us?
Let's take a look.
Cuba 5, Brazil 2
It was a rough day for Team Brazil. After it lost to Japan in its first game, Cuba came along and dominated the fifth and sixth innings to earn the win.
Brazil held the Cubans hitless through the first four innings, but Team Cuba broke through in the fifth, plating two runs and adding another three in the sixth inning.
Cuban shortstop Erisbel Arruebarruena went 2-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored to lead the Cuban offense, while Guillermo Heredia, Alexei Bell and Raul Gonzalez were all credited with one RBI each.
Starter Ismel Jimenez was solid for Cuba, striking out six over 4.2 innings and scattering four hits.
This game definitely had the makings to be a one-sided affair, as the Cubans were a mere 3-for-13 with runners in scoring position, leaving 10 men on base.
Following the win, Cuba will prepare for a matchup with China on Monday at 2:30 a.m. ET, while reeling Brazil will wait until Tuesday at 3 a.m. ET to see the Chinese club.
Chinese Taipei 8, Netherlands 3
Now 2-0 in pool play, Chinese Taipei submitted a scintillating pitching performance against the Dutch.
It was a collective effort by six hurlers, but Chinese Taipei held Netherlands to just one hit, with that lone knock coming via catcher Dashenko Ricardo.
After Yao-Lin Wang couldn't get through two innings, Wei-Lun Pan came in to throw 4.2 scoreless innings while surrendering the one hit and walking a batter.
Which Day 2 win was the most impressive?
Chinese Taipei fell down 3-0 early, but a four-run fourth inning and a three-run sixth inning put the Dutch away. Left fielder Dai-Kang Yang went 1-for-4 with a three-run home run, and catcher Hung-Yu Lin went 1-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored.
Tom Stuifbergen took the loss for the Dutch, allowing five earned runs on four hits and three walks over three innings.
It was certainly a disappointing loss for Netherlands, which had just upset South Korea less than 24 hours earlier.
The Dutch will look to regroup before Monday, when it'll play Australia at 11:30 p.m. ET. Chinese Taipei, meanwhile, will close out Pool B against South Korea on Tuesday at 6:30 a.m. ET.
Japan 5, China 2
After a 5-3 victory over Brazil on Saturday, Japan continued its title defense against China thanks to a four-run fifth inning and three RBI from right fielder Yoshio Itoi.
Japanese starter Kenta Maeda was fantastic against the Chinese, fanning six and allowing just one hit and one walk over five innings to pick up the win.
China picked up its only two runs in the top of the ninth, but it wasn't enough. China was 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position and mustered just three hits all game.
Now 2-0 in pool play, Japan is looking to defend its WBC title, a tournament the country has won in each of its only two years.
China has a tough road ahead, as it is now 0-1 in pool play and will play three games in three days.
Japan will close out first-round play with a game against Cuba on Wednesday at 5 a.m. ET, while China will look to bounce back against the Cubans on Monday at 2:30 a.m. ET.
For a complete look at the 2013 World Baseball Classic schedule, click here.
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