Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Netherlands Beats The Dominican Republic....Again!!!

Lightning has struck twice.

For the second time in 72 hours the Netherlands has defeated the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic. The Dominican Republic was favored by some to win the WBC and now they have been eliminated by a team who has four players with major league experience.

Many thought the Netherlands win on Saturday was a fluke after they lost 3-1 to Puerto Rico yesterday. The Netherlands had a 1-0 lead into the 8th but couldn't hold on to the lead.

When I arrived home the rematch between the Netherlands and the D.R. was scoreless in the 11th inning. But no sooner than I sat down when Jose Bautista gave a D.R. a 1-0 on sinking line drive that alluded Netherlands outfielder Eugene Kinsale.

But the Netherlands didn't back down. Kinsale atoned for his gaffe by tying the game with a bloop single in the bottom of the 11th off D.R. closer Carlos Marmol (who happens to be the closer for the Cubs.) Marmol tried to pick off Kinsale and ended up throwing the ball into rightfield which advanced Kinsale to third. Marmol managed to get a strikeout but then Yurendell de Caster hit a sharp liner to D.R. first baseman Willy Aybar (who played in the '08 World Series with the Tampa Bay Rays) and he booted it which scored Kinsale for the winning run. A tough error for Aybar. One that neither he nor his countrymen will forget anytime soon.

The Netherlands beating the Dominican Republic twice would have been like the U.S. Olympic Hockey team beating the Soviets twice in the 1980 Winter Olympics.

The Netherlands team now travels from San Juan to Miami for a rematch with Puerto Rico in Round 2 of the World Baseball Classic. Even if they lose tomorrow night they are the story of the World Baseball Classic. If they do beat Puerto Rico then the legend grows and the sky is the limit.

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