The energy was incredible out at Petco Park for the start of the second round of the World Baseball Classic Tuesday night. The defending champs the Dominican Republic faced Puerto Rico in a game that reminded many of their previous meeting at the 2013 Championship. Both teams were undefeated after the first round but Tuesday’s game had national pride on the line.
Puerto Rico had an early lead after the first inning, but Dominican Republic’s Nelson Cruz had something to say about it. The outfielder led off the top of the second inning with a homerun to right-center field. The homer was reviewed and later confirmed to tie the score at one run apiece.
The Puerto Rico fans were electric in the stands. Leading by one in the sixth inning, Yadier Molina gave them more reason to celebrate and a little insurance with a solo home run, his second of the tournament. The Cardinals standout notched two of his team’s three runs.
In the ninth it was do or die for the Dominican Republic. Trailing by two, this was the time to reignite the late game comebacks we saw during the first round in Miami. But the Dominicans came up short.
Puerto Rico’s 3-1 victory was redemption with a cherry on top. PR’s win also snapped the Dominican Republic’s 11 game win streak.
Up next, USA plays Venezuela Wednesday night at 6:00 p.m.