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World Baseball Classic open thread: Canada at Dominican Republic in Miami

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The first of the World Baseball Classic games to be played in Miami is tonight between Canada and the Dominican Republic.

MLB: Baseball Hall of Fame-Induction Ceremony Gregory J. Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

The Orioles may have been off today, but their teammates who have gone to play in the World Baseball Classic are not. The Dominican Republic team that features Manny Machado and also has Welington Castillo will be in action tonight at Marlins Park in Miami, playing Canada.

Although none of the Canadian players in the World Baseball Classic were involved in any way in the incident of someone throwing a beer can at Hyun Soo Kim last year, Canadian baseball must nonetheless suffer for this and therefore all good people of Birdland should be rooting for the Dominican Republic even though Jose Bautista is on that team.

The Dominican Republic lineup:

  1. Jose Reyes - SS
  2. Manny Machado - 3B
  3. Robinson Cano - 2B
  4. Jose Bautista - LF
  5. Carlos Santana - 1B
  6. Nelson Cruz - RF
  7. Adrian Beltre - DH
  8. Gregory Polanco - CF
  9. Welington Castillo - C

Carlos Martinez is the starting pitcher for the DR.

I like the look of Machado batting second, although I don’t expect to see it very often when he’s back with the O’s. And how ridiculous is a lineup where Beltre is the #7 hitter? The Dominican team won the last WBC and you have to figure they’re one of the favorites this time around. This will be the first of three pool games they will play.

The Canadian lineup:

  1. Dalton Pompey - CF
  2. Justin Morneau - DH
  3. Tyler O’Neill - LF
  4. Freddie Freeman - 1B
  5. Eric Wood - 3B
  6. Rene Tosoni - RF
  7. George Kottaras - C
  8. Pete Orr - 2B
  9. Jonathan Malo - SS

Ryan Dempster is the starting pitcher for Canada.

I follow baseball very closely and I have never heard of a number of those guys. Which doesn’t mean the Canadian team can’t win this game, of course, but on paper is what it is for a reason, because most of the time what’s on paper is going to play out on the field in some way.

This game gets underway at 6pm on MLB Network. If you’re an MLB.tv subscriber in the US, you can also watch the game there.

Later, Mexico and Italy will play with a scheduled 9pm start. The Mexican team features Oriole Vidal Nuno, although I don’t know whether he’s expected to pitch today or not.