Sports

Israel Beats Netherlands 4-2, Advances to Quarterfinals

Israel Beats Netherlands 4-2, Advances to Quarterfinals

Cuba improved to 1-1 to keep alive its chances of advancing to the second round.

If Australia defeats China on Thursday, Japan qualifies for the second-round Pool E. Netherlands scored in the third.

An inning later, Tsutsugo of the DeNA BayStars blasted a two-run home run to right. But Japan got even in the fifth on a Nobuhiro Matsuda sacrifice fly that sent Hayato Sakamoto home from third.

Jurickson Profar drew a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the ninth inning to lift the Netherlands to a 6-5 win over Taiwan on Wednesday in the World Baseball Classic. Pitcher Jason Marquis got the win for Israel, allowing one hit in the opening inning, the only one he pitched.

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Cuba's hitters could not get anything going in the early proceedings against China's best pitcher, Bruce Chen, a Panama-born left-hander who has 17 years experience in the United States major leagues.

Israel started Thursday's game strong, putting three runs on the board in the first inning.

Corey Baker went 4 2/3 scoreless innings, scattering three hits and striking out three. Santos then scored on Alexander Ayala's double to left.

Cuba grabbed four runs in that sequence and added one run each in the sixth and seventh innings.

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In Pool A action, Cuba starting pitcher Bladimir Banos showed outstanding form as he combined with three relievers to blank China for a 6-0 victory at the Tokyo Dome.

Israel's national baseball team defeated The Netherlands 4-2 in its final game of the first round of the World Baseball Classic, leading to the Jewish state's squad securing a 3-0 sweep in the group stage.

Pool E will be played at the Tokyo Dome from Sunday, with the top two after three games each to progress to the semifinals at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.

Netherlands will be joined in the next phase by Israel, which already has two wins.

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