Having started somewhat sluggishly in the tournament, Team USA is really starting to hit its stride at the moment, with a crushing 7-1 win over Puerto Rico perhaps a sign of things to come. However, having said that, it won't find any respite here against the Dominican Republic, who is still undefeated and primed for a strong performance in this one.
How will this World Baseball Classic match unfold? Read on to see some bold predictions for both the United States and its opponent in this one.
Over 10 Runs Will be Scored
If there's one thing that the United States and the Dominican Republic have in common, it's their ability to get plenty of runs on the board in the tournament.
The Dominican Republic has averaged six runs per game so far and has also allowed three runs against. Combine that with the 24 runs that the U.S. has scored, and the fact that its pitching can give up a stack of runs as well, and this one certainly looks like being a high-scoring affair.
Team USA Turns to R.A. Dickey, and He Flops
R.A. Dickey struggled a lot against Mexico in the opening game, and if he starts again for the U.S. here, expect him to struggle once more, especially up against arguably the strongest lineup at the World Baseball Classic, which features guys like current front-runner for MVP, Jose Reyes.
Dickey couldn't get anything other than his fastball going against Mexico, and it's hard to see that working in Team USA's favor in this one, especially if the Dominican Republic looks to get after Dickey early. It will make the Dominicans very tough to stop if they do.
Robinson Cano Drives Home Double HRs in Dominican Win
It would be a big surprise, really, if the Dominican Republic did not win this matchup, for it simply has a deeper and stronger squad than Team USA.
Robinson Cano, in particular, is shaping up to be a guy to watch in this match—both with the bat and with the glove in his hand—and will trouble the United States here. He recently went 3-for-4 and drove home another RBI to add to his collection for the tournament so far.
Against Dickey's fastball, expect Cano to connect strongly throughout this one and make the Americans pay for their poor pitching. I'd say two home runs in this one, as the Dominican Republic sails home for a comfortable 8-4 victory on the night.
Got any bold predictions for this World Baseball Classic match?
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