World Baseball Classic Preview Part 2—Miami/Jalisco Pools

Senor Weaselo

Senor Weaselo

Senor Weaselo plays the violin. He tucks it right under his chin. When he isn’t doing that, he enjoys watching his teams (Yankees, Jets, Knicks, and Rangers), trying to ingest enough capsaicin to make himself breathe fire (it hasn’t happened yet), and scheming to acquire the Bryant Park zamboni.
Senor Weaselo

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Good afternoon #SportsFans. A couple days ago Seamus went over the first two pools of the World Baseball Classic, baseball’s answer to the World Cup that deserves partial credit because I guess some people care? You know, like us addicts who miss baseball dearly and can’t wait for Opening Day in April to get a fix! He gave the format, but just to run it down again:

Round 1: 4 pools of 4 teams in round-robin play, top 2 advance (and holy shit, mazel Israel!)
Round 2: 2 pools of 4 teams in round-robin play (top 2 of Pools A/B, top 2 of Pools C/D), top 2 advance
Round 3: Last 4 teams play single-elimination knockout

Yeah, I agree, they could do double-elimination at Dodger Stadium, or at least make the championship round a 3-game series, but I guess it would take it too close to the regular season for the pitchers to make one more tune-up start for their teams or something? *shrug* Anyway, let’s begin!

Pool C: Marlins Park, Miami, FL (March 9-13)

(Teams are listed in alphabetical order)

Canada

Something something “stand on guard for thee”

Do I know any of these guys? John Axford? Ryan Dempster? Eric Gagne? No, seriously, Eric Gagne, who’s been retired for eight years, is pitching for Team Canada. As for position players, Freddie Freeman’s a star for the Braves, Justin Morneau robbed Jeter of an MVP one year (and yes, I’m still bitter), Dalton Pompey’s on the Jays making him the most Canadian of the Canadian players. And Russell Martin… is coaching and not catching even though he still has to get ready to play this season.

How will they do? Worse than last time, because that gave us this.

(The first tiebreaker is run differential, which is why you bunt for a base hit up 6 in the 9th inning. Yeah, it’s stupid. And why would you get into a brawl with the Canadians? They created a sport about fighting on skates!)

But I say they can replicate their third-place finish from last year, probably with a win over Colombia.

Colombia

Hey lady? Wrong sport.

Do I know any of these guys? Well, they’re making their debut in the WBC, which is a bit surprising actually. They qualified by beating Panama, which is impressive. But the Colombians have White Sox (for now) ace Jose Quintana and Braves ace Julio Teheran (yes, neither of those teams are all that good, but they are the best pitchers on those teams!) I know Donovan Solano, he played a little bit last year with the Yanks when Castro went down. But that’s about it. Shout-out to Sugar Ray Marimón though for being referred to as Sugar Ray, so the rule is he can’t suck.

How will they do? Quintana and Teheran might be able to get them a win, but I think best-case they finish third, worst-case they bow out and have to go through the qualifiers again next time.

Dominican Republic

The defending champions, after beating Puerto Rico last year.

Do I know any of these guys? In short, yes. Most of them are name-brand Major Leaguers. Quoth Key & Peele, “This is the Major Leagues, we are all from the Dominican Republic.”

Let’s say the most notable are *checks roster* Johnny Cueto, Robinson Canó, Hanley Ramirez, José Bautista (fuck him, though), Nelson Cruz, and, of course, Bartolo Colón.

The WBC uses the designated hitter so we won’t get to see this. WE ARE ALL WITNESSES.

How will they do? If they don’t make it to Dodger Stadium and the championship rounds consider it an upset.

United States

Seamus has an affinity for blondes, Senor prefers brunettes. And she was on the first page under “Hot American woman with flag.”

Do I know any of these guys? Yes. Most of them. If not all of them.

How will they do? If they don’t win it all there’ll be the strongest of taeks as there were in 2006, 2009, and 2013, but expect them to get to the second round, maybe they can get to Dodger Stadium. I expect them to finish second in the group.


Pool D: Estadio de Béisbol Charros de Jalisco, Jalisco, Mexico (March 9-13)

Italy

Do I know any of these guys? Believe it or not, yes! I’d say the most notable are catchers Francisco Cervelli and Drew Butera, but the most notable is the extra arm they have in the pen with switch pitcher (yes, pitcher) Pat Venditte, who has a rule named after him.

How will they do? They won’t surprise as many people as last time, where the Azzuri (is it still Azzuri for baseball, and shouldn’t I know this being half Italian?) made it to the second round of play. It’s definitely possible for them to repeat the feat, but I don’t think they’ll be as fortunate this time out.

Mexico

Do I know any of these guys? Well, I’d imagine you know Adrian Gonzalez and Sergio Romo of the Dodgers (Giants fans must love Romo changing teams), and there’s Joakim “The Mexecutioner” Soria, who has a great nickname but hasn’t been the same since his Tommy John surgery in 2012.

How will they do? You know how I said Italy could find a way to manage to squeak their way in the top 2? I doubt it, Mexico is the home team for this pool and probably a little pissed after having their asses handed to them both on the field and in bench-clearing brawls last time out. They’ll make it to the second round in San Diego, Presidential Executive Orders be damned (I had to do one).

Puerto Rico

Do I know any of these guys? I don’t know as many as I expected, actually! Journeyman reliever J.C. Romero’s on the team, which is surprising since he’s 40, so not loving the pitching, but the offense looks pretty good at least, with Yadier Molina, Javier Baez, Carlos Correa, Francisco Lindor, and Carlos Beltrán among the position players.

How will they do? I don’t know if they can repeat their runner-up finish from 2013, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t have the pitching to keep up and falter in the first round.

Venezuela

Do I know any of these guys? Out of the pitchers, you know Felix Hernández. On offense, let’s see… Salvador Perez, Jose Altuve, Victor Martinez, Roughned Odor (most known for punching José Bautista), Carlos Gonzalez, and Miguel Cabrera. And Omar Vizquel’s the manager and could probably still be an above-league-average defensive shortstop today.

How will they do? They have the firepower and they have an ace, so they could be a dangerous out. Let’s put a theoretical gun to my head and give my pool predictions.

Pool C prediction
Dominican Republic
United States
Canada
Colombia

Pool D prediction
Mexico
Venezuela
Puerto Rico
Italy

All right, that’ll do it. If you get MLB Network in the States, have fun watching, otherwise, well, have fun doing something else.

Senor Weaselo
Senor Weaselo
Senor Weaselo plays the violin. He tucks it right under his chin. When he isn't doing that, he enjoys watching his teams (Yankees, Jets, Knicks, and Rangers), trying to ingest enough capsaicin to make himself breathe fire (it hasn't happened yet), and scheming to acquire the Bryant Park zamboni.
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WakezillaMoose -The End Is Well Nigh...litre_colaballsofsteelandfury Recent comment authors
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Wakezilla

iJesus Cristo! That Domincan mujere is muy caliente!

Puerto Rico can’t win because America has turned them into North America Greece, so, Dominican Republic it is!

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
litre_cola

Romo leaving for the Dirt Rams does hurt, I won’t miss him as the Dirt Niners have replaced him with someone better but jesus, don’t fucking go to them. Anyone but them.

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

Why people feel the need to photoshop asses is beyond me. There are so many examples of various sizes of back that up perfection for free on the interwebs…….

/completely irrelevant “problem” rant over

Don T

Third? Ha!
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Don T
theeWeeBabySeamus

Yay, thanks for sharing this.
I repeat…great danger.

Don T

Señor’s right. PR has not been known for producing great pitchers. But stopper Willie Hernández won the Cy Young, MVP and World Series MVP with the Tigers in ’84.

ballsofsteelandfury

I regret that I can only like this comment just once.

Moose -The End Is Well Nigh
Moose -The End Is Well Nigh

I like Roselyn and would enjoy buying her the coffee drink of her choice at a locally owned coffee shop…. mid-morning on a Saturday.

...

You filthy pervert.

theeWeeBabySeamus

Also, Seamus is equal opportunity re: hair color/body type.
(for example that Mexican chick with the big ass (photo I’ve used in TGISF btw) would be in great danger)

ballsofsteelandfury

“Mexican chick with the big ass”

Which one? They all have one…

theeWeeBabySeamus

Roughned Odor (most known for punching José Bautista)

That’s still awesome, btw.
http://i.imgur.com/ikfnko4.gif

theeWeeBabySeamus

America….F-ck Yeah!!!!!!

Don T

Counterpoint: October 25, 1977
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