In a somewhat unexpected turn of events, the American squad has advanced to the finals of the World Baseball Classic to face off against the powerhouse team out of Puerto Rico. Team Puerto Rico has yet to lose a game in 2017’s tournament, beating the U.S. five days ago with the same starting pitchers going then who are set to square off tonight. oing then
Pitching for Puerto Rico is the Mets’ right-handed swing man Seth Lugo, who has pitched surprisingly well in the WBC. If you want to know more about Lugo, just watch this:
Happy Lugo Day!— #Statcast (@statcast) March 22, 2017
Puerto Rico's #WBC2017 starter has fired 104 of the 200 highest-spin curves tracked by #Statcast. https://t.co/4So1Djoagh pic.twitter.com/M94GcuJnGw
Blue Jays’ groundball machine Marcus Stroman will toe the rubber for Jim Leyland’s Team USA squad.
Getting significantly more playing time than fellow first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, Eric Hosmer is the only representative on either squad from the Royals (Danny Duffy will not pitch tonight), though recent Royal Reymond Fuentes plays center field for Puerto Rico and former Royals great Carlos Beltran is their designated hitter.
Team USA, who holds a 5-2 record in tournament play, hopes to continue their tight-rope walk through the Classic, but Puerto Rico would seem to be the odds-on favorite given their dominant run to reach the final.
The teams will align themselves thusly: