United States 3, Colombia 2 10 innings
Adam Jones singled home Christian Yelich on an 0-2 count with two outs in the bottom of the tenth inning as Team USA won their first game of the World Baseball Classic.
The game started out as a pitching duel as USA starter Chris Archer retired all 12 batters he faced and Colombia starter Jose Quintana did not allow a hit until two were out in the sixth inning. But Colombia pushed across two runs in the fifth inning on three-two out doubles off of reliever Mychal Givens.
Team USA tied it up in the sixth inning, after Quintana was relieved by William Cuevas. Jones doubled home Brandon Crawford and then Ian Kinsler scored from third when Nolan Arenado struck out with two outs, but the pitch got past catcher Jhonatan Solano and Arenado beat the throw to first.
The game stayed deadlocked until the Jones’ two-out single in the tenth off of Guillermo Moscoso, who pitched for the Iowa Cubs last season.
Dominican Republic 9, Canada 2 (Thursday)
Welington Castillo hit a two-run home run off of his former Cubs battery-mate Ryan Dempster and Jose Bautista hit a monster three-run home run as defending champions Dominican Republic had little trouble dispatching of Team Canada on Thursday.
Puerto Rico 11, Venezuela 0 (7 innings)
T.J. Rivera hit a walk-off home run as Puerto Rico embarrassed Venezuela with 6 runs in the seventh inning, ending the game early by the mercy rule.
Puerto Rico jumped off to a lead off of Venezuela starter Felix Hernandez in the third inning. Rivera hit a sacrifice fly and Hernandez walked Carlos Beltran with the bases loaded to force in another run.
Venezuela only managed one hit off of Puerto Rico starter and winning pitcher Seth Lugo, thanks in part to some terrific defense by the Puerto Rico infield of Carlos Correa, Francisco Lindor and Javier Baez.
Puerto Rico extended their lead in the sixth off of Padres pitcher Jhoulys Chacin. Correa hit a solo home run and two batters later, Yadier Molina hit a two-run home run off of Chacin.
Baez had an RBI single as part of the six-run rally in the seventh inning. He was 1 for 4.
Italy 10, Mexico 9 (Thursday)
Iowa Cubs outfielder John Andreoli hit a walk-off, two-run single off of Oliver Perez in the bottom of the ninth, capping a five-run rally as Italy stunned Team Mexico and their fans in Jalisco on Thursday night.
Former Cubs farmhand Alex Maestri started for Team Italy and he gave up a leadoff home run to Esteban Quiroz. He settled down and allowed one more unearned run over 3.1 innings.
Andreoli tied the game up in the bottom of the first inning with a solo home run of his own.
Netherlands 5, Korea 0 (Tuesday)
Jurickson Profar and Nationals farmhand Randolph Oduber homered for the Netherlands.
Netherlands 6, Chinese Taipei 5 (Wednesday)
The Netherlands beat Chinese Taipei on a walk-off walk by Profar in the bottom of the ninth.
Israel 4, Netherlands 2 (Wednesday, Thursday Korean time)
Both teams had already qualified for the next round, but Israel won the group after jumping on Dutch starter Rob Cordemans for three runs in the first inning.
Former Cub Jason Marquis pitched another scoreless inning to start this game.
Korea 11, Chinese Taipei 8, 10 innings. (Thursday)
Both teams had already been eliminated by the time this game was played, but Korea scored three runs in the top of the ninth to beat Chinese Taipei and avoids having to go through qualifying rounds in the 2021 WBC.
Taekyun Kim homered in the tenth to give Korea two big insurance runs after a sacrifice fly had broken the deadlock.
Japan 11, Cuba 6 (Tuesday)
Japan 4, Australia 1 (Wednesday)
Japan 7, China 1 (Friday)
Japan was not seriously threatened in the Tokyo Dome and easily qualified for the next round, also in the Tokyo Dome.
Cuba 6, China 0 (Tuesday—Wednesday in Japan)
China managed only one hit off of Cuba in this game.
Cuba 4, Australia 3 (Thursday—Friday in Japan)
Veteran slugger Alfredo Despaigne hit a grand slam in the fifth inning as Cuba advanced to the second round with a win over Australia.
Australia 11, China 0, 8 innings. (Thursday)
Australia notched the first “mercy rule” win of the tournament with an 11-run pounding of China. Former Twins first baseman Luke Hughes and current Twins second baseman James Beresford both homered.
With the win, Australia avoids having to qualify for the 2021 WBC.