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WBC Semi Finals: USA vs. Japan

Sportsbook.com Preview: WBC Semifinals

Team USA is battered, but not broken

Team USA has advanced to the Semifinals of the World Baseball Classic despite suffering an avalanche of injuries.

There are only four teams left in the Classic as the semifinals get ready to start Saturday night in Los Angeles with Venezuela playing Korea at 9 pm ET.USA will open up against Japan at 8 pm ET on Sunday. The winners meet Monday night for the title.

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The story of Team USA has been a great one as injuries have decimated their numbers but not their spirit.

Gone from the team already are Boston’s Kevin Youkilis (ankle) and Dustin Pedroia (left oblique), Florida’s Matt Lindstrom (right rotator cuff) and Atlanta’s Chipper Jones (right oblique).

In addition, Milwaukee’s Ryan Braun is battling a rib cage injury, and the Mets’ David Wright has a bad toe. Those two sluggers are expected to be ready to go but the team still needed to summon Tampa Bay’s Evan Longoria to replace Jones.Bet on Baseball at sportsbook.com

Longoria’s addition is kind of a downer because they really wanted Cubs’ first baseman Derrek Lee. Adam Dunn is a big bopper with the bat but he’s terrible in the field and could cost them the tournament with his balky glove.

Team USA is certain to have enough bats to win the tourney, but pitching is another matter. San Diego’s Jake Peavy is expected to be the starter on Sunday and he gave up six runs in just two innings in an embarrassing 11-1 loss to Puerto Rico last Saturday.

That game got so out of hand that the ‘mercy rule’ was put into effect after the 7th inning, something usually reserved for Little Leaguers. USA did exact revenge on Puerto Rico with a dramatic, 6-5 comeback win on Tuesday in the 9th inning.

That ensured that the Americans would advance, but they still have their work cut out for them to win the whole thing.

Korea, Japan and Venezuela are all healthier right now, and each team has captured the attention of their respective countries.

Venezuela went 3-0 in the last round and is the top hitting team left in the tournament. Defending champion Japan has a miniscule ERA of 1.20, while Korea has also pitched well.

Any of the four teams have a good chance to win this event, so place your bet at Sportsbook.com now and get ready for an exciting three nights of baseball.


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About DaveB

Dave B has been a Fantasy Football writer for us for 10 years. A couch potato wannabe, Dave’s insights have been read by 10’s of people for years. He hope’s for world peace + global relaxation. Enjoy and remember only smoke things that are completely natural.