World Baseball Classic Pool A: Korea – Japan 2-14 (7)
JPN 350 122 1 14 14 0 KOR 200 000 0 2 4 1
Japan scored eight runs in the first two frames en route to a 14-2 rout against Korea in seven innings. They are the first team to advance into the second round and will wait for their opponents at PETCO Park in San Diego, California. Korea now needs a win against Chinese Taipei on Sunday to follow Japan.
Team Nippon’s offense had a dream start into the game, highlighted by a three-run homerun by Shuichi Murata in the second, his second in the WBC overall. Tae Kyun Kim hit a two-run homer for Korea in the bottom of the first, cutting the deficit to a run. But Japan came right back to decide the outcome early.
They scored in each of the seven periods besides the third. Kenji Johjima (3-4, 3 runs, 2 RBI) added a two-run shot. Ichiro Suzuki ended his hitting slump with a three-for-five performance with three runs scored.
Daisuke Matsuzaka (W 1-0) allowed four hits, two runs and two walks in four innings, striking out one. Kwang-Hyun Kim (L 0-1) gave up seven hits, eight runs and two base on balls in just 1 1/3 innings.