Cuba traveled to Asia last week to kick off preparations for the 2017 World Baseball Classic. The past two days they played Chinese Taipei in a pair of exhibition games in Taichung. On Monday Cuba prevailed 6-2. Roel Santos with a two-run triple and Yosbany Alarcon with a solo home run provided the offensive highlights in the game. Yosbany Torres (CUB) and Kuan-Yu Chen (TPE) were the starting pitchers.
In the second game on Tuesday Chinese Taipei stunned the record world champion by a score of 4-2. A sac fly in the sixth inning broke a 2-2 tie. Vladimir Banos pitched five-plus innings for Cuba, but got charged with the loss. Wei-Lun Pan got the starting nod for Chinese Taipei. He was relieved by former Detroit Tigers prospect Fu-Te Ni, who stifled Cuba’s bats in three scoreless one-hit innings.
Cuba is going to play another warm-up game against the CPBL club Brothers Elephants on Wednesday. Chinese Taipei already departs for South Korea. Cuba is also travelling to South Korea for a couple of warm-up games against Korea prior to their first-round date at the Tokyo Dome.