WBC brawl will go unpunished
The violent misdeeds of the Mexican and Canadian baseball teams will go unpunished. The World Baseball Classic decided no players will be...
PHOENIX — The violent misdeeds of the Mexican and Canadian baseball teams will go unpunished.
The World Baseball Classic decided no players will be suspended in the aftermath of Saturday's nasty brawl between the teams. Video of the fighting spread across the globe, giving the WBC a major-league dose of unwanted attention.
The organizers said Sunday that while the mayhem "runs counter to the spirit of sportsmanship and respectful competition," suspensions would not be appropriate because both teams did not advance to the second round.
The organizers, in a statement attributed to World Baseball Classic Inc., said punishment would be inappropriate because of the format of the tournament, which is now held every four years.
The organization said it spoke with representatives of the Canadian and Mexican federations Saturday night.
"We are aware of the perspectives held by both sides in a competitive environment," the WBC said. "Nevertheless, we relayed to both teams that such an altercation is inappropriate under any circumstances and has no place in baseball."
Canada manager Ernie Whitt said the WBC "did the right thing."
Meanwhile, in Tokyo, two-time defending champion Japan hit a record-tying six home runs, scoring in all seven innings Sunday to rout the Netherlands 16-4 and reach the semifinals.
Japan outhit the Dutch 17-6. The Netherlands plays Cuba on Tuesday, with the winners joining Japan in the semifinals at San Francisco on March 17 or 18,
In San Juan, Puerto Rico, Miguel Cabrera and Pablo Sandoval hit consecutive home runs for Venezuela in an 11-6 victory over Spain that came too late to matter at the World Baseball Classic.
Venezuela, which finished 1-2 in Group C, was eliminated from the competition Saturday night with a 6-3 loss to Puerto Rico. So the win over Spain (0-3) was of little consolation to the South American team loaded with major league All-Stars and considered a top contender.
Also at San Juan, the Dominican Republic won 4-2 over Puerto Rico but both teams advance out of Group C.
• Trying to revive his career with the Miami Marlins, Chone Figgins had a big day against the Atlanta Braves.
Figgins, signed to a minor league deal after his release by Seattle, was 4 for 4 with two RBI in Sunday's 10-2 win over the Atlanta Braves.
"I'm smiling again," said Figgins, a bust during three seasons with the Mariners after signing a $36 million, four-year contract as a free agent. "It was tough in Seattle, really tough. But I feel like everything is good now."
• The Boston Red Sox will shut down designated hitter David Ortiz for several days with sore left heel.
• Matt Kemp had his first two hits of the spring and Clayton Kershaw allowed only two hits in five innings as the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Colorado Rockies 6-1.
Kemp was 0 for 11 with five strikeouts in his first four Cactus League games.