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World Baseball Classic: Team USA easily beats Canada

Danny Duffy #41 of the United States pitches

Danny Duffy #41 of the United States pitches during a Pool C game of the 2017 World Baseball Classic against Canada at Miami Marlins Stadium on March 12, 2017 in Miami, Florida. Credit: Getty Images / Mike Ehrmann

MIAMI — Apparently, Team USA was just fine having Noah Syndergaard stay back in Port St. Lucie for the World Baseball Classic.

Jim Leyland’s crew wasn’t perfect during this weekend’s first round at Marlins Park, but his starting rotation was excellent, and Danny Duffy continued that trend Sunday night with four scoreless innings in an 8-0 victory over Canada.

Nolan Arenado and Buster Posey homered to help Team USA (2-1) advance to the second round at San Diego’s Petco Park.

Duffy allowed two hits and struck out seven. Team USA’s rotation, which includes Chris Archer and Marcus Stroman, has not allowed a run or a walk in 12 2⁄3 innings. The three have given up five singles and struck out 14.

“Absolutely we feed off each other,” Duffy said. “I feel like I’ve played with these guys for a lot longer than I have. Archer and Stro, they set the table, and I was just trying to follow suit.’’

The Yankees’ Tyler Clippard, one of four relievers in Sunday’s game, struck out four in two scoreless innings.

Ryan Dempster, who came out of a three-year retirement to start two games for Canada (0-3), recorded only one out and got tagged for three runs.

Team USA blew a 5-0 lead in Saturday’s 7-5 loss to the Dominican Republic.“Good teams go about their business,” Leyland said after that collapse. “I don’t expect anybody to have their head down. That’s what bad teams do. Good teams know they’re going to win a game tomorrow.”

“We’re not here to mess around,” Arenado said. “I didn’t sign up for this to just have a good time. I came here to compete and came here to win, and I think we’re doing the best we can. And if we keep having the same attitude like we have, good things will happen.’’

Nimmo strains hamstring. The Mets aren’t getting Brandon Nimmo back from the WBC in the same shape in which he left. He suffered a Grade 1 hamstring strain Sunday in Team Italy’s 9-3 loss to Puerto Rico. Nimmo, who started in centerfield,was 2-for-10 with a home run and two RBIs in two games but now is expected to be sidelined for a few weeks.

Former Hauppauge High School star Nick Fanti, now a Phillies prospect, pitched a scoreless seventh for Italy, allowing two hits. He got former Met Angel Pagan on a flyout and ended the inning by fanning the Mets’ T.J. Rivera.


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