Team USA battled Puerto Rico for the 2017 World Baseball Classic title Wednesday night. A crowd of over 50,000 fans packed Dodgers Stadium to see who would leave with the trophy and the glory.
The U.S. got a jolt from Ian Kinsler who blasted a two run homer to center field to give the Americans the 2-0 lead in the third inning.
In the top of the fifth inning, Team USA was up by three when Andrew McCutchen singled to score Christian Yelich and gave his team a healthy 4-0 lead.
Later in the seventh inning with the bases loaded, Brandon Crawford singled to drive in two more runs and that put the United States ahead with a 6-0 advantage over Puerto Rico. The U.S. would tack on another run in that inning to showcase the power of their offense.
The starting lineup was on fire, but the pitching was out of this world. Marcus Stroman put on a show for Team USA and stymied Puerto Rico's batters. The right hander for the Toronto Blue Jays carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning. With hopes of taking it through his 95 pitch maximum, it was broken up on a leadoff double by Puerto Rico's Angel Pagan. Stroman walked off the diamond to a standing ovation after throwing 73 pitches.
Even with Stroman off the mound, the damage was done. Team USA won its first World Baseball Classic title with an 8-0 victory over Puerto Rico! Stroman was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.
With the start of the Major League Baseball season right around the corner, surely the social media hashtag “For the Glory,” which rallied American fans, will carry over straight into opening night.