With home runs from Munetaka Murakami and Kazuma Okamoto, plus a star finish from star Shuhei Otani, the team Japan went undefeated (7-0) by defeating the United States 3-2 in the final in Miami on Tuesday to claim its third World Baseball Classic victory.
This was the third crown for the Japanese (2006, 2009, 2023), but a set of Stars and Stripes, including home runs by Trea Turner and Kyle Schwarber, defends the title won in the 2017 Fourth Edition. I couldn’t.
Philadelphia Phillies star shortstop Turner hit his fifth home run of the tournament, his fourth in the knockout round, to put the United States ahead 1–0 in the second inning.
With five homers, Turner tied the all-time record for a single tournament of its kind, shared with South Korea’s Seung-Yop Lee since 2006.
But just after that, at the end of that chapter, Murakami the slugger, the man who put the Mexican to bed the day before, He hit a home run from the four corners to right field second level to tie the score at 1-1.
Japan loaded the bases with just one out after a home run, with Lars Nutvaal in the batter’s box. bottom. box.
In Chapter 4, Relief Kyle Freeland also allowed a long home run to left center field by Okamoto to give Japan’s Ninth Team a 3–1 lead.
In the 5th inning, fire extinguisher Freeland overwhelmed Nutvar (fly) and walked the ball, but as a designated hitter, he threw a fire extinguisher and threw a dangerous Otani (ground ball to first base), and Yoshiba also hit a ground ball.
After that, reliever Hiromi Ito retired Turner, catchers JT Realmuth and Cedric Mullins 1-2-3, and Japan maintained its dominance with four consecutive shutouts for the Stars and Stripes.
Japan’s ninth again threatened in the sixth after two outs when reliever Jason Adams lost the strike zone and gave up two walks and a wild pitch, but eventually Nootbar popped out to right. I was.
In the seventh inning, the so-called lucky inning, the U.S. had two men on base with no outs when pinch-hitter Jeff McNeil walked and Mookie Betts singled, but fire damper Taisei Ohta reached right. , dominated Mike Trout’s liner and dominated the pole. Goldschmidt was a double-play groundout that gave the locals five consecutive zeros.
signs of life
In the eighth, the Americans showed signs of life when Phillies slugger Schwalber homered to right against Yu Darvish of the San Diego Padres to bring the score closer to 3-2.
Shortly after, Turner followed with a single to center, but Realmut died on a meek fly to the infield and Mullins died on a fly to center.
MVP Ohtani came to his aid in the ninth inning, striking out Major League Baseball Angels teammate Trout.
Starting pitcher Imanga (1-0) won, starting pitcher Kelly (0-1) lost, and Ohtani decided to rescue.
435 in the tournament with homers, four doubles, eight RBIs, and 10 walks, while pitching, he posted a 2–0 record with one save and a 1.86 ERA to earn the MVP Trophy. He struck out in the ninth and 2/3 innings.
“Definitely number one,” Ohtani said after the win. “It has to be on top. It was a fairytale ending. Most of all, I appreciate this competition, this whole situation, this whole atmosphere.”
Thus the Asian won his third World Classic for the first time in 14 years.