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Ohhhhhh Wheeler....

Discussion in 'Houston Astros' started by jtotheb, Mar 14, 2006.

  1. jtotheb

    jtotheb Contributing Member

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    Should we be worried about this? :D

    Errors, Choi's HR help Korea stay unbeaten

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Associated Press

    RECAP | BOX SCORE

    ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Team USA received another poor performance from Dontrelle Willis, plus a lack of timely hitting.


    Hee-Seop Choi watched his three-run homer sail into the night -- and land just fair in the second row of the right-field stands.

    And what seemed to be a proper strategical move backfired. No wonder the Americans lost.

    Hee-Seop Choi's three-run homer off Dan Wheeler in the fourth inning was the key blow Monday night as Korea beat the Americans 7-3 to remain the only unbeaten team in the inaugural World Baseball Classic.

    The game was played before an announced crowd of 21,288 at Angel Stadium.

    "When they got a good pitch to hit, they didn't miss it," Team USA manager Buck Martinez said. "They pitched very effectively to the heart of our order. We hit some balls hard. They made quality pitches when they had to."

    Korea (2-0) will play its final game of Round 2 against Japan on Wednesday night. Japan (0-1) will face Mexico (0-1) on Tuesday, and Team USA (1-1) will play Mexico on Thursday in other Round 2 action. The top two teams will meet Saturday in the semifinals at Petco Park in San Diego.

    Korea led 3-1 when Min Jae Kim, who had three hits, doubled with two outs in the fourth. Seung Yeop Lee was walked intentionally before Choi hit a towering fly ball into the right-field corner that barely eluded Vernon Wells, landing just fair and in the second row, making it 6-1.

    Lee put Korea ahead for good by hitting his WBC-leading fifth homer off Willis in the first. Lee came to the plate in the fourth with seven hits in 15 at-bats, seven runs and 10 RBI in the Classic, making the decision to walk him seem reasonable.

    But Choi, a Los Angeles Dodgers reserve who was pinch-hitting for Tae Kyun Kim, spoiled the strategy.

    "Lee has been red hot in this tournament," Martinez said. "I just felt like it was the best move. I felt like we would take our chances. Hee-Seop Choi, we knew him very well. We just didn't get the ball in on him. He got enough of it to hit it over the fence."

    The Americans didn't play anywhere near their best. They put the first two runners on base in the first, fourth and fifth innings, but failed to score each time. They stranded 11 runners and committed three errors after making only one in the first four games.

    "We definitely could have played better," said first baseman Mark Teixeira, who went hitless in four at-bats with two strikeouts. "Anytime you lose, there are things you could have done better.

    "We could have hit better, we could have fielded better, we could have pitched better. But they just beat us."

    Team USA's problems started with Willis, who had his second bad outing of the Classic, giving up four hits, four walks and three runs in three innings.

    "I just had bad rhythm today," he said. "I think I was very composed out there. I had a great game plan, I just didn't execute. I'm just not playing the best baseball I can possibly play. My confidence is still up."

    Martinez said he hasn't lost confidence in the Florida Marlins left-hander.

    "I don't think there's a man in that clubhouse who doesn't want to give the ball to Dontrelle Willis," Martinez said. "It's just a matter of giving him one more chance. We're going to do everything we can to give him the ball."

    Choi, who hit three homers in a game against Minnesota last season, said this one was more meaningful.

    "This is different -- it's for my own country," he said through an interpreter. "And we were able to beat the U.S., which is the best team in the world."

    Korean manager In Sik Kim seemed surprised by his team's convincing victory.

    "Something happened today which nobody could believe," he said. "This is a collection of all the best of the major league players. It's very difficult to believe what happened. But this is baseball. You never know what might happen."

    Derek Jeter and Ken Griffey Jr. had three hits each for Team USA. Griffey hit his third homer of the Classic and drove in two runs.

    After Lee's two-out homer in the first, the winners got another run on a walk and singles by Ji Han Song and Bum Ho Lee.

    Griffey homered with two outs in the third off Min Han Son, but Korea countered on Bum Ho Lee's RBI grounder in the bottom of the inning.

    Kim's run-scoring single off Mike Timlin in the sixth made it 7-1. The run was earned despite two errors in the inning by second baseman Chase Utley, who was booed when he came to the plate to lead off the seventh.

    Team USA scored twice off Tae Hyon Chong in the ninth on a run-scoring single by Griffey and an RBI grounder by Alex Rodriguez before Seung Hwan Oh retired Chipper Jones on a grounder to second to end the game.

    Son allowed two hits and one run in three innings in his second effective outing of the Classic. Reliever Dae Sung Koo pitched three shutout innings for Korea.

    "We had our chances right from the first inning," Jeter said. "We just didn't get any hits with guys on base. I don't know if you can learn from it. I'm well aware of what it takes to win. We just didn't do it."
     
  2. Rocketman95

    Rocketman95 Hangout Boy

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    Season's over. Thanks Drayton.

    :D
     
  3. ROXRAN

    ROXRAN Contributing Member

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    Gosssssssshhhh! :mad:
     
  4. russian88

    russian88 Contributing Member

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    Trade his ass :rolleyes:
     
  5. Surfguy

    Surfguy Contributing Member

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    I'm in shock at how poorly the USA is doing. I guess our country is not the best baseball country in the world. I'm sorry I thought otherwise. I guess I have to dish out a little respect to other countries because they apparently can play the game as well or better than our MLB-based USA team. I still cannot believe it.
     
  6. MadMax

    MadMax Contributing Member

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    don't put too much stock in it. this is spring training. guys are getting in shape for the real season. they're pitching 2-3 innings at a time.

    having said that...more than any other sport, on any given day, anyone can beat anyone in baseball.
     
  7. Fegwu

    Fegwu Contributing Member

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    The only thing left that we dorminate is football and curling. This is unacceptable.
     
  8. OldManBernie

    OldManBernie Old Fogey

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    Hate to break this to ya, but U.S. only won a bronze in curling. It's now just another sacred sport that is lost to foreigners.
     
  9. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    not too sure why you are in such shock. lets not forget how international the MLB already is. aren't latin americans close to outnumbering americans in the MLB?
     
  10. Buck Turgidson

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    As of 2004, the latest year I could find info, MLB was 72.9% American-born players. The DR was next with a bit over 10%.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/f...from=2004&to=0&DIV=countries&submit=Run+Query

    Back on topic, these are glorified ST games with a good number of the best players not participating. I wouldn't read too much into it.
     
  11. Buck Turgidson

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    P.S. that number was 83% in 1994, 88% in both '84 & 74.
     
  12. rocketfat

    rocketfat Member

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    please lock this thread.
     
  13. Major

    Major Member

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    To be fair, though, the US team has an all-star infield (A-Rod, Michael Young, Texiera, Utley, Varitek, backed up by Jeter, Derrek Lee, and Chipper Jones). That's as good an infield as you'll ever see. And their pitching includes Clemens, Willis, and Peavy - 3 of the best pitchers in baseball - as starters, and Lidge and Cordero closing. These guys should be doing a whole lot better than they are.

    Most of the other games are going to form, so I don't know that the spring training thing holds too much weight. It's just the US team that seems to be laying an egg.
     
  14. Buck Turgidson

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    Many, if not most, of the Carribbean guys play a ton over the winter, even the established ones. The Dominican League is seriously competitive. Not sure about the Asian teams though.

    I'm not going to overanalyze this. I couldn't care less if the US wins or loses. These other countries are pretty good, it's an exhibition, it's fun, it's good for baseball.
     
  15. RunninRaven

    RunninRaven Contributing Member
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    I actually kind of like that we are doing poorly. Maybe if we are embarassed enough, Selig won't be pushing it so hard in the future.
     
  16. rodrick_98

    rodrick_98 Contributing Member

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    willis looked terrible last night, i think it's cause he hasn't pitched regularly since last season....

    also they are suffering from the same fate that the american basketball teams suffer from. these foreign teams have played together for a long time. the announcers said some of the korean players have been together since they were 15.

    this club was thrown together a couple weeks ago, they haven't had time to gel yet.
     
  17. Major

    Major Member

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    Very true. I think this event would be best to hold right after the World Series - players from the WS could simply not play. But everyone's in good shape, well conditioned, there's not as much fear of injury (since you have many months to heal), etc.
     
  18. Buck Turgidson

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    That's exactly what they should've done. Maybe next year.
     
  19. Fegwu

    Fegwu Contributing Member

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    What is this world coming to?
     
  20. BigM

    BigM Contributing Member

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    it's van gundy's fault, he was yelling at wheeler in the bullpen and it embarrased him. b*stard's messing with the astros now.
     

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