Trea Turner and Paul Goldschmidt and the relentless US lineup continued to put crooked numbers on the scoreboard. This dynamically illustrates the huge gap between the major league American team and the Cubans who are struggling on the world stage as their top players leave the island nation.
Turner hit two home runs, scored a tournament-leading four runs, and led the United States to a 14–2 loss on four runs, advancing the defending champion Americans to the finals of the World Baseball Classic.
Goldschmidt also hit a home run and had four RBIs, and Cedric Mullins went deep in a game that was interrupted three times by fans running the field to display protest signs.
“The team kind of represents the government over there and people aren’t very happy about it,” said US manager Mark DeRosa.
The United States looks to join Samurai Warriors as the only nation to win the title twice, facing either Japan or Mexico in Tuesday night’s championship.
“I think it took me a while, but now I’ve found a little stride,” Turner said.
Turner has a tournament-leading 10 RBIs. He had loaded the bases in the eighth inning the previous night against Venezuela, had a solo homer in the second off Roenis Elías (0–1), and had a three-run drive in the sixth against Elian Leyva.
“I kept saying every time he went deep, who’s the idiot hitting him in the ninth?” DeRosa said.
Cuba took the lead when the first four batters reached from Adam Wainwright (2-0) without getting the ball out to the infield. The 41-year-old right-hander recovered and ran the bases loaded aground.
Referring to the pitcher’s fielding practice, Wainwright said, “I put myself in that situation by making a bad PFP play or not making a PFP play in the first place.
The American hitter had 14 hits and seven walks, including an extra-base hit eight. Goldschmidt hit a go-ahead two-run homer first with a 112 mph rocket over the left field wall. He added a two-run single in the fifth.
“For me, it was one of my favorite home runs I’ve ever hit in my life,” Goldschmidt said.
St. Louis third baseman Nolan Arenado was ejected after being hit in the hand by a pitch in the fifth inning, briefly raising another injury concern before X-rays were found to be negative. Mets closer Edwin Diaz suffered a season-ending knee injury in the celebrations following Puerto Rico’s victory Wednesday, while Houston second baseman Jose Altuve was hit by a pitch while playing in Venezuela on Saturday and gave himself a thumb. fractured a bone.
The 35,779 fans at the sold-out Lawn Depot Park sounded evenly split between the US and Cuba. Hundreds gathered outside a ballpark in Miami’s Little Havana section to protest the presence of his team in Cuba, an island nation under communist rule since 1959.
Play was briefly suspended in the 6th, 7th and 8th innings as the fans rushed to the field. The first carried a banner reading “Libertad Para Los Presos Cubanos del 11 de Julio” (Freedom of Cuban Prisoners on July 11), marking the date of the 2021 demonstration.
Cuban coach Armando Johnson said: “There were provocations, but we didn’t pay attention to them.
Cuban fans cheered early when the team’s first four hitters racked up three infield hits and a bases-loaded walk. Wainwright allowed one run and five hits in four innings. Cardinals teammate Myles Mikolas followed through four innings, with Aaron Loup finishing.
The 1992, 1996 and 2004 Olympic gold medalists, Cuba’s national team has struggled in recent years as many of its top players have moved to the MLB. Cuba failed to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Games.
For the first time this year, Cuba used players signed to MLB clubs, including Gold Glove center fielder Luis Robert and third baseman Yoan Moncada of the Chicago White Sox. But many of Cuba’s big leaguers were absent.
“We want other players to join us,” Johnson said. “They should think about it and go back to Cuba.”
On what DeRosa did after Saturday night’s come-from-behind quarterfinal victory over Venezuela.
“I first read on social media how I was a terrible manager,” he said.
Opposite side of bracket
In the other semifinal, Japan will face 21-year-old sensation Roki Sasaki on Monday night against Mexico and Patrick Sandoval of the Los Angeles Angels.
Moncada left after the third baseman collided with left fielder Roel Santos in the sixth inning. Moncada hit a rib, but Johnson said he’s fine.
Arizona RHP Merrill Kelly is likely to start in the Finals. ___
https://floridadailypost.com/routs-cuba-14-2-reach-world-baseball-classic-final/ USA defeats Cuba 14-2 to advance to finals of World Baseball Classic