Day 14 at the 2013 World Baseball Classic featured one monumental showdown in Miami. The United States and Puerto Rico went head to head in an elimination game.
The Americans defeated Puerto Rico, 7-1, in their first Pool 2 matchup on Tuesday, but the stakes were much higher heading into the weekend. With Japan and the Netherlands having already advanced to the championship round, Friday's classic matchup in South Beach had tons riding on it.
Here we'll get you caught up on the latest action.
Puerto Rico 4, United States 3
Nelson Figueroa put on a show at Marlins Park in Miami on Friday night, pitching six scoreless innings for Puerto Rico, to lift the Caribbean territory to a 4-3 win over the United States. The win sets them up a matchup with the Dominican Republic on Saturday and eliminates the Americans from the 2013 World Baseball Classic.
The loss was the United States' second in two days, and for the third straight time the American team will come up short in its chase for the WBC title.
Which remaining team will win the WBC in 2013?
Ryan Vogelsong started on the mound for the United States on Friday, giving up a run in the first inning off a Mike Aviles single. The San Francisco Giants pitcher recovered nicely, however, recording four scoreless innings before surrendering one more run in the top of the sixth. He would leave after five and two-thirds innings pitched, allowing just four hits, two runs and striking out one.
After Vogelsong left, Andy Gonzalez increased Puerto Rico's lead to 4-0 with a sixth-inning double. At that point, Puerto Rico had seized all momentum.
The United States weathered the storm, though. They finally got on the board in the seventh inning, scoring on a Giancarlo Stanton single to left field. Ryan Braun narrowed the gap with a double in the eighth inning, and Brandon Phillips scored on a walk to pull the Americans within one run.
In the end: Puerto Rico's pitching would steal the show, shutting down the American bats and defeating the United States on its own soil—sending them home from the World Baseball Classic disappointed yet again.
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