Baseball: U.S. defeats Canada 9-4 in WBC
Phoenix • Running out of outs, Adam Jones and the United States suddenly broke loose and saved themselves from a humbling loss.
Now, thanks to a fast finish, they're heading to Miami for the next round of the World Baseball Classic.
Jones doubled in the tying and go-ahead runs in the eighth inning, Eric Hosmer hit a three-run double in the ninth and the U.S. scored seven times in the last two innings to beat Canada 9-4 on Sunday.
"Words can't describe it," Hosmer said, recalling how he felt standing on second after his big hit. "It is hard to hold your emotions right there. It is just an unbelievable feeling and when you hear the crowd chant 'USA' and the other crowd chanting 'Canada.' It is an unbelievable experience."
The winner of the game moved on, the loser went home. And for a long while, it didn't look good for manager Joe Torre's team.
"It would have been embarrassing," second baseman Brandon Phillips said. "I would have been embarrassed. USA, this is where baseball started, and we represent our country. I just feel that if we had lost we didn't do our job. We have to go out there and try to be the first American team to win the WBC. That is our goal."
The U.S. trailed 3-2 after seven innings before erupting. Team USA and Italy each went 2-1 and advanced in Group D while Canada and Mexico went 1-2 and were eliminated.
The U.S. plays Group C runner-up Puerto Rico on Tuesday night in Miami.
"We believed in ourselves and turned it around," Phillips said, "and that is a beautiful thing."
Venezuela 11, Spain 6 • Miguel Cabrera and Pablo Sandoval hit consecutive home runs in San Juan, Puerto Rico, for Venezuela, which finished 1-2 in Group C and was eliminated from the competition Saturday night with a 6-3 loss to Puerto Rico.
Japan 16, Netherlands 4 • Two-time defending champion Japan hit a record-tying six home runs in Tokyo to advance to the championship round.
Dominican Republic 4, Puerto Rico 2 • Robinson Cano homered in San Juan as the undefeated Dominican Republic won their first-round group. The Yankees slugger had three hits to help the Dominicans finish 3-0 in Group C.