World Baseball Classic Pool D: Puerto Rico – Panama 7-0
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Former MVP and World Series winner Pudge Rodriguez led Puerto Rico to an easy 7-0 shutout versus Panama in Pool D of the 2009 World Baseball Classic. They now will face the Dutch team on Monday, as the reigning European champion upset the Dominicans earlier on Saturday. Panama will fight against the team of manager Felipe Alou on Sunday, as both teams face elimination with a loss.
Rodriguez started behind the plate for the Puerto Ricans and went four-for-four with a walk, two homeruns, three runs scored and four RBI. He missed the cycle by a triple. Carlos Delgado (3-4, 2 runs scored) had opened the scoring in the second with a solo homerun. Panama’s leadoff hitter Luis Durango had a single and two walks in four plate appearances. Javier Castillo (2-4) and Carlos Ruiz (1-2, BB), who later had to leave the game, after tripping over his mask on a pop up, each reached base twice.
Javier Vazquez (W 1-0) picked up the win with 4 1/3 innings, allowing four hits and a walk. Nelson Figueroa, Saul Rivera and Carlos Gutierrez closed out the victory. Bruce Chen (L 0-1) gave up four hits, two runs and three base on balls in four innings.