Ichiro, Beltran, Wright, Reyes, Big Papi, and…Sulbara?


I love the World Baseball Classic.

As we speak, I am watching the Dutch and Puerto Rico playing with the NED winning 1-0 in the 8th inning. This is an upset of epic proportions that may be overshadowed only by the Nederlands upset earlier against the Dominican Republic.

I just saw a 19-year-old  named Juan Carlos Sulbara come in and get the K against Pudge Rodriguez with the bases loaded and the game on the line. There's a really interesting dynamic in the WBC because of matchups featuring no-name-nobodies who are either too young or too old to have done anything in the Show against the game's biggest superstars. 

The WBC is proof that baseball features the greatest international sports parity. Yeah, soccer is huge internationally but the US gets the snot beat out of them basically every World Cup. It is interesting that the WBC has already become bigger and more popular than baseball ever was during the Olympics; maybe getting kicked out of the Olympics is the best thing that ever could've happened to international baseball. 

Either way, I love seeing guys that for one reason or another have never gained fame, battle toe-to-toe with guys who are making millions every year (or every month). 

This young side-arm pitcher has just loaded the bases with a walk; there's one out. This is probably the fourth such jam that I've seen happen for the Nederlands so far, but they keep finding a way to get out of these things. It's ridiculous!

I love anything that causes Bones to look at me after a beautiful double-play is turned and say, "Can you imagine having Dustin Pedroia and Derek Jeter on the same team? That'd be ridiculous."

I'll keep watching the WBC faithfully and can only hope that the Americans do a little better than they did last time; however, unlike international basketball, the Americans aren't expected to win. It's sort of nice to not feel like a douche cheering for your country to win [the Olympics featured a lot of me yelling, "Don't ease up! Keep shooting! Score 400 points! DRINK THEIR TEARS.]

FYI, Puerto Rico scored 3 runs and is now up 3-1 in the top of the 9th. 




[big blue boxers]

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0 Responses to It’s the world and it’s a classic…

  1. Zach says:

    And the great part is that some of these no-names before the WBC get a shot in the big leagues. A no-name named Francisco Liriano was debuted to the world stage in 2006 and now he is the ace of the Minnesota Twins.

  2. Bigs says:

    Exactly Zach.

    I see a guy like Sulbara K-up Pudge, Beltran, and other superstars from Puerto Rico and I’m like, “You’re telling me that guy can’t play for the Texas friggen’ Rangers?”

    Or how about Dice-K last WBC?

  3. stephen c. berry says:

    Just because the U.S. doesn’t win much in the World Cup doesn’t mean the parity i baseball is better. It is interesting, though, that soccer is dominated by European teams while the Asian and American teams struggle, with a few exceptions (Brazil, Mexico). And it’s the other way around in baseball.

    I like the WBC, and hope it grows in popularity in the years to come.

    also, Japan’s outfield is amazing!

  4. D.L. says:

    “The WBC is proof that baseball features the greatest international sports parity. Yeah, soccer is huge internationally but the US gets the snot beat out of them basically every World Cup.”

    Just because the US shows some sign of competitiveness in this tourney, that shows sports parity? I’m sorry but far more countries participate in the World Cup and the almost endless qualifying rounds for it ensure that all teams have an equal shot of qualifying.

    The US just needs to learn their place in sports, that they’re not going to dominate every single sport.

  5. Bigs says:

    Yeah a lot of teams have the opportunity to QUALIFY, but not to win…

    A cursory glance at the World Cup winners from 1930-2006 confirmed that SEVEN countries have won the World Cup in 76 years. Germany, Brazil, France, Argentina, England, Italy, and Uruguay. And only 11 teams have even made it to the finals.

    Obviously, the WBC hasn’t been in existence long enough to prove my point about parity, but I think that over an extended period of time we’ll see different countries taking the tournament – whether it be Japan, US, D.R., Puerto Rico, Canada, Mexico, Netherlands, Korea, etc.

  6. Jen says:

    Hahaha, that last paragraph is brilliant.
    Pretty sure “DRINK THEIR TEARS” should be the USA’s new Olympic slogan.

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