Canada looking sharp after win over Blue Jays
DUNEDIN - It may have been an exhibition contest but Team Canada looked in midseason form pounding out 13 hits en route to a 7-1 win over the Toronto Blue Jays to at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.
Canada scored early and often plating runs in each of their first three offensive innings including two in the second and third frames.
Leadoff man Dalton Pompey (Mississauga, ON) and two-hole hitter Justin Morneau (New Westminster, BC) had two hits apiece with Morneau adding a pair of RBI to his totals. Canada also received contributions from the bottom of the order as Rene Tosoni (Port Coquitlam, BC) and Jonathan Malo (Juliette, QC) had two hits each with Malo driving in two.
Canada sent six pitchers to the mound including starter Andrew Albers (North Battleford, SK) who picked up the win with two scoreless innings. Éric Gagné (Mascouche, QC), Kevin Chapman (Coral Springs, FL), Jim Henderson (Calgary, AB) and Ryan Kellogg (Whitby, ON) all followed with scoreless innings as Canada carried a 5-0 lead into the seventh.
Pompey reached base in all four of his plate appearances and also made a diving catch in centre field with two out and a runner on second to save a run.
The Jays scored their lone run of the ballgame in the seventh coming on a sacrifice fly after a pair of walks given up by reliever Scott Mathieson (Aldergrove, BC). Canada went on to add runs in both the eighth and ninth innings with Eric Wood (Oshawa, ON) collecting an RBI single, while Josh Naylor (Mississauga, ON) scored on a wild pitch after leading off the inning with a double.
Canada will play the New York Yankees tomorrow (1:05pm ET) at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa before opening the World Baseball Classic on Thursday against the Dominican Republic.