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The Dutch knock out Dominicans

March 11, 2009|Associated Press

Stunned twice by a pesky Netherlands team, the Dominican Republic is done at the World Baseball Classic.

Eugene Kingsale singled in the tying run and scored the game-winner in the 11th inning Tuesday night as the Netherlands rallied for a 2-1 victory over the heavily favored Dominicans, earning a surprise spot in the second round.

After an error by first baseman Willy Aybar allowed the winning run to score, Netherlands players rushed out of the dugout in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and piled all over each other in a raucous celebration that resembled a World Series finale.

"This is a miracle. The Dominican Republic is one of the best teams in the world," Netherlands Manager Rod Delmonico said with tears in his eyes. "It is difficult to describe what took place. These kids have fought for three days. I have never had a team with this much passion."

Jose Reyes, Robinson Cano and other Dominican stars slumped quietly in the dugout, staring ahead in shock.

It was the second time in four days that a Netherlands squad made up of little-known players upset the Dominican Republic, considered one of the favorites coming into the 16-team tournament thanks to a roster filled with major league All-Stars.

Even without injured Alex Rodriguez, the Dominicans featured David Ortiz, Hanley Ramirez, Miguel Tejada and Pedro Martinez, just to name a few. But in two games they couldn't solve an unheralded Netherlands pitching staff coached by former big leaguer Bert Blyleven.

The Netherlands won, 3-2, in the teams' tournament opener Saturday.

Venezuela 10, Italy 1 -- Bobby Abreu and Miguel Cabrera hit consecutive home runs at Toronto to start a four-homer outburst in the fifth inning that powered Venezuela into the second round. Jose Lopez added a two-run shot, Ramon Hernandez followed with a mammoth drive and Venezuela eliminated Italy with its second win over the Italians in four days.

Cuba 5, Australia 4 -- Cuba advanced to the second round by scoring two runs in the top of the eighth inning at Mexico City.

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Schedule

All times Pacific; all games on MLB.TV, ESPN Deportes

ROUND 1

POOL B

Foro Sol Stadium, Mexico City

Tuesday

Cuba 5, Australia 4

Tonight

Mexico vs. Australia, 7, MLBN

POOL C

Rogers Centre, Toronto

Tuesday

Venezuela 10, Italy 1

Today

Venezuela vs. USA, 3:30, MLBN

POOL D

Hiram Bithorn Stadium, San Juan, P.R.

Tuesday

Netherlands 2, Dominican Rep. 1 (11)

Today

Netherlands vs. Puerto Rico, 2, ESPN2

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Source: mlb.com

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