Reporter Lee Sang-cheol = The Cuban baseball team, which Lee Kang-cheol will meet in the quarterfinals of the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC), defeated the Yakult Swallows, the champion of the Japanese Professional Baseball Central League.
In a practice game against Yakult held on the 21st at Urasoe Stadium in Okinawa, Japan, Cuba won 10-4 with 16 hits.
As a result, Cuba recorded 2 wins and 1 loss in 3 practice matches held during the training period in Japan. Previously, Cuba suffered a 2-11 loss against Nippon Ham Fighters on the 17th, but won 3-2 against Chunichi Dragons on the 19th.
The Cuban lineup, which scored only 5 runs in the last 2 games despite 19 hits due to a lack of cohesion, succeeded in scoring a lot against Yakult that day.
In the top of the 3rd inning, Cuba broke the balance of 0 with Yoelkiss Gibert’s 2 RBI double in 1 out, 1st and 2nd base. He allowed 1 run at the end of the 3rd inning, but immediately tied 3 hits and 3 doubles in the attack in the 4th inning and scored a whopping 5 points. 안전놀이터
Guillermo Garcia, who signed a training contract with Chunichi, hit a 3-run home run from 1st and 2nd base safely in the top of the 5th inning with a 7-1 lead, practically putting a wedge in the game.
Afterwards, Cuba allowed 2 runs at the end of the 7th and 1 run at the end of the 8th, but prevented additional runs and won by 6 points.
Cuban starting pitcher Jose Rodriguez gave up 5 hits and 1 walk in 3 innings and endured with 1 run.
Last year, Rydel Martinez, who recorded 4 wins, 3 losses, 39 saves, 5 holds, and an average ERA of 0.97 in Japanese professional baseball, took the top spot in saves. Rydel Martinez took the mound as the second pitcher in this game and delivered clean pitches with 2 strikeouts and no runs in 1 inning.
In the batting line, first hitter center fielder Roel Santos and fifth hitter first baseman Yadir Drake each got three hits, showing good hitting feeling.
Cuba is scheduled to play a practice game against the Yomiuri Giants at Naha Cellular Stadium on the 21st.
Cuba was drawn in Group A with Chinese Taipei, the Netherlands, Italy and Panama in the first round of the 2023 WBC. If Korea advances to the quarter-finals with first or second place in Group B, it can compete with Cuba for the right to advance to the quarter-finals.