The WBC has finished up the first round and the surviving teams are Japan, Korea, USA, Venezuela, Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Netherlands. Puerto Rico had a game against the Netherlands yesterday, which they won 5-0. What stands out about that game is that no one in particular stood out. It wasn't one players dominating performance that put the PR team ahead. Instead, several players up and down the lineup did what they needed to do to score some runs. No player had more than one hit, and no player drove in more than one run. It was a complete team effort. Why is this important? Well, the New York Yankees of 2008 never understood this, and I'm wondering if the Yankees of 2009 will be any better. We'll have to see once the season starts.
Venezuela bested USA yesterday making them the Pool C winners, and now Team USA will be taking on Team Puerto Rico this Saturday. Should be an exciting game. Pudge Rodriguez won the Pool D MVP after batting .545 with 2 homeruns and 5 RBI's. Someone should risk signing him, though it shouldn't be us. Posada, Molina, and Cash are plenty catchers for now.
Back in Yankee land, CC Sabathia had a rough start against the Tigers. I suspect he's washed up. In all seriousness, I'm only worried if pitchers are still getting lit up in their last two starts of the spring. A couple things to note, it seems like our power hitters are experiencing a power outage. We had no extra base hits yesterday, and in general guys like Berroa and Gardner are hitting more homeruns than guys like Teixeira or Posada. This is part of why I hate spring training. Veras and Bruney had great outings yesterday going one inning with 2 strikeouts and no hits or walks. Melky drew a walk, stole a base, and scored a run in the game, but he is lagging far behind Gardner this spring. I haven't looked at his stats, but I wonder if he's hit anything beyond a single yet this spring. Meanwhile, Gardner is showing some pop in addition to his speed.