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World Baseball Classic | Ohtani excels on the mound and Japan beats China

(TOKYO) Shohei Ohtani allowed one hit in four innings, five strikeouts and an 8-1 victory over Japan in Thursday’s World Baseball Classic Group B game at the Tokyo Dome.

Ohtani hit a two-run double in the fourth inning to give Japan a 3–0 lead.

The 41,616 fans in the stadium saw what they expected: Ohtani throwing, kicking and not disappointing.

The battle was close until the Japanese exploded for four runs in the eighth inning.

Australia 8 – South Korea 7

Robbie Perkins hit one of his team’s three homers, and he helped South Korea beat South Korea 8-7 in another Group B game.

Leading 5-4 in the top of the eighth inning, the Australians were out of contention when Perkins hit a long ball with two teammates.

Photo by Shuji Kajiyama, Associated Press

Australia were leading 2-0 in the first half of the fifth innings.

Australia took a 2-0 lead in the first half of the fifth innings, but South Korea clawed back three runs at the next turn of the batting. All three of those runs were the result of Yuji Yang’s home run.

South Korea added a run in the sixth, but their rivals responded by scoring three times in the seventh on Robbie Glendinning’s home run.

Aided by five walks and a hit batter, the South Koreans scored three runs in the eighth to make it 8-7 in Australia’s favor. However, they could not get the point that allowed them to level the score.

Netherlands 3 – Panama 1

In Taiwan, the Netherlands secured their second win in Group A on Thursday with a 3-1 win over Panama.

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Xander Bogaerts hit a solo homer in the third inning to give the Netherlands the lead. Two laps later, his teammate Juriksson Broffer followed suit.

A single by Erasmo Caballero allowed Panama to cut into the Netherlands’ lead, but a bad pitch by gunner Alberto Baldonato allowed Bogarts to cross the plate in the eighth inning.

On Wednesday, the Netherlands opened the tournament with a 4-2 win over Cuba.

Panama beat Chinese Taipei 12-7 in their first game.

Canada lost to the Cubs

Canada will compete in Group C, which includes the United States, Mexico, Great Britain and Colombia. Canada plays Great Britain in its first match in Phoenix on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Canada played a season opener against the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday afternoon, losing 11-7.

In the loss, Damiano Palmegiani, a Toronto Blue Jays player, had two hits in as many visits to the plate, including a three-run homer in the ninth inning.

Canada opens another season opener against the Seattle Mariners on Thursday.