Venezuela, already out, beats Spain at World Baseball Classic
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- Venezuela broke out the bats too late.
Venezuela, which finished 1-2 in Group C, was eliminated from the competition Saturday night with a 6-3 loss to Puerto Rico. So the win over Spain (0-3) was of little consolation to the South American team that was loaded with major league All-Stars and had been considered a top contender.
Venezuela had more hits Sunday (16) than in its first two games combined. Cabrera went 3 for 5 with three RBIs and scored three runs. Omar Infante also had three hits and Elvis Andrus knocked in two runs.
Cabrera and Sandoval connected in the eighth inning.
Venezuela also lost its opener to the Dominican Republic, 9-3. The star-studded lineup finally got rolling Sunday, but it was too late.
Spain started strong, scoring three runs in the first inning, but Venezuela had seven hits and six runs in a big fourth inning that included a two-run single by Andrus. All the runs scored with two outs.
"We started well today, contrary to the other times. But we have to play throughout the game," Spain manager Mauro Mazzotti said. "The rules of baseball say that you have to avoid a big inning, and we had one with two outs, with six runs. That killed the chances for us."
Starting pitcher Ramon Ramirez got the win for Venezuela. He allowed three runs, four hits and struck out four in four innings.
Still, the Venezuelan team was understandably disappointed with its overall performance. The club did not make it past the first round for the first time in three editions of the WBC.
"We did not play well," Gonzalez said. "We did not seize the opportunities or create opportunities for ourselves."
The Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico played later Sunday to determine the winner of Group C. Both teams are headed to the next round in Miami.