Canada faced a tougher challenge than expected in their World Baseball Classic opener Tuesday evening. After giving up three runs during an eighth inning South African rally, Ernie Whitt’s team found themselves heading to the ninth trailing by a run. Fortunately the team exploded, scoring four in their next series while creating some breathing room for Minnesota Twins Jesse Crain to close out the 11-8 victory. Former Blue Jay Corey Koskie homered for the Canadians.
Canada will be up against a much stronger opponent this afternoon, as the Florida Marlins’ Dontrelle Willis will take the mound for a powerful American side. The United States beat Mexico 2-0 on the back of some phenomenal pitching in their tournament opener. Their seven pitchers combined for a team WHIP rating of 0.44 in the four-hit victory. Blue Jay fans will get to see star outfielder Vernon Wells take the field for the US team. The game can be seen at 4pm on Rogers Sportsnet.