The bi-annual baseball World Cup finished over the weekend, with the USA defeating the Cubans 10-5 in the final to take their second consecutive title (and second consecutive victory over Cuba in the final). Cuba has generally dominated this competition for the past half century, winning the title 21 times since 1950.
For those interested in recapping the tournament, the home page is here, the link to daily results and box scores is here. This was a long tournament, running from September 9th til yesterday September 27th and was held in several european countries.
Final: USA d Cuba 10-5
3rd place: Canada d Puerto Rico 6-2
5th place: Australia d Netherlands 4-1
7th place: Venezuela d Chinese Taipei 6-3
The only Nationals farmhands that I know of who played in the 2009 Baseball World Cup is 25-yr old Luis Atilano, who pitched decently for Harrisburg (7-8, 4.16era, 1.48whip), got called up and went 2-0 in 2 starts for Syracuse before going off to represent Puerto Rico. Alex Cintron was on the Puerto Rico roster as well, but the Nationals DFAd him in May and he got picked up by Seattle.
Atilano got the start and win against 1st round host Spain on 9/13/09 in Barcelona, going 5innings, giving up 4 hits and 2 runs on 85 pitches. This earned Puerto Rico a spot in the 2nd round.
Atilano went again 9/19, beating Venezuela, going 6 1/3 innings, 6 hits, 2 runs on 84 pitches. Puerto Rico finished pool play 6-1, tied for 1st along with the Netherlands and Cuba.
Atilano threw in the 3rd game of the final pool play on 9/24, pitching a 9 inning complete game victory over Chinese Taipei. 7 hits, 2 runs (1 earned) and 4Ks on 103 pitches. This was his last start; he finished the tourney 3-0 and pitched pretty well, albeit against none of the real powers of the tournament.
Coincidentally, Justin Smoak has hit 9 hrs, 22rbis and was named the tourney mvp. Teammate and fellow high-end prospect Pedro Alvarez hit 5hrs through the course of 14 games the tournament. A Cuban named Alfre Despaigne hit 11 to lead the tourney (perhaps the next big defectee?)
#1 by AlexVa - September 28th, 2009 at 13:53
What’s the recent story on the Cuban pitcher that defected and was trying to get international residency in Denmark(?)
#2 by Todd - September 28th, 2009 at 14:22
You mean Aroldis Chapman? http://article.wn.com/view/2009/09/26/Let_the_bidding_begin_Cuban_defector_Aroldis_Chapman_becomes_m/? He setup residency in Andorra (no taxes) and has been declared an available free agent by MLB. 22yr old Lefty with a 100-mph fastball. He projects as a reliever though in the majors. He has New York written all over him; I cannot imagine the Nats getting involved in the bidding there.