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Puerto Rico vs Dominican Republic summary: scores, stats and highlights | 2023 World Baseball Classic

Miami (United States), 15/03/2023.- Players of Puerto Rico celebrate during the 2023 World Baseball Classic Pool D match between the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico at LoanDepot Park baseball stadium in Miami, Florida, USA, 15 March 2023. (República Dominicana, Estados Unidos) EFE/EPA/CRISTOBAL HERRERA-ULASHKEVICH

Puerto Rico 5-2 Dominican Republic

Puerto Rico outduels Dominican Republic in 5-2 win

The Dominican Republic came into the WBC as the favorite to win Pool D, perhaps even winning it all. With one of the best lineups in the game, their advancing to the quarterfinals was seen as little more than a formality.

In the end it was not to be. In a clash of giants, Puerto Rico came out on top and will advance to the quarterfinals to face Mexico. The Dominicans' WBC campaign now comes to a screeching halt.

Christian Vázquez started it all off with a home run off Johnny Cueto, kicking off a massive four-run third inning. Juan Soto opened up the bottom half with a solo shot of his own, but that was all the response that the DR could muster.

In one of the strangest plays you will ever see, Lindor's shot to center squirted under the glove of Julio Rodríguez, rolling all the way to the wall. Lindor sprinted around the bases and scored without a throw. An inside the park home run.

The rest of the game was routine on both sides, but the worst moment came about at the end of the game. After shutting down the side in the bottom of the ninth, Edwin Diaz was jumping with the rest of the team in celebration. Suddenly, the crowd parted and Diaz was on the ground holding his right knee. Faces were ashen and his brother Alexis was in tears as Diaz was carried off the field with a clearly injured knee.

Without knowing what will happen to Diaz, the rest of the team will have a day off before lining up to do it again against Mexico.

That is going to do it for our live commentary of the Puerto Rico vs Dominican Republic game. Thank you for joining us, we hope that you enjoyed it as much as we did! Our live commentary of the USA vs Colombia game is currently over here

Have a great evening!

That is a bittersweet ending to a celebratory moment. Celebrating the win, Diaz's knee gave out and now it could have repurcussions far beyond a simple ball game.

Both teams are on the field looking concerned for Diaz. The Dominicans as much as the Puerto Ricans are hoping that it isn't as bad as it looks.

Edwin Diaz injured

Edwin Diaz is on the ground at the center of the celebrations on the mound. The Puerto Ricans back away and hold their heads. He is on the ground holding his right knee.

It looks as if in their celebrations and jumping around, his knee buckled. He is now being carried off the field. It looks bad.

Diaz can't put any weight on that knee at all and a wheel chair is brought out for him.

Ball Game

Puerto Rico win! They are headed through to the quarter finals!
3 out

Finally, on the 10th pitch of the at-bat, a slider dips in on the top inside corner for a called strike three.

The payoff pitch is fouled off, then fouled off again. And again.

Hernandez gets the full run of fastballs and sliders, both inside and out, before the count runs full.

The Dominican Republic are down to their last out and they will call upon Teoscar Hernandez, pinch hitting for Francisco Mejia.
2 out

Segura gets ahold of a few to foul them off. He runs the count to 2-2 before chasing a low slider for strike three.

Jean Segura will now come up to pinch hit for Jeimer Candelario.
1 out

And so it is. Marte gets three strikes and that makes one away.

Ketel Marte will lead off and he is going to face nothing but slider and fastball. And even knowing that, you still can't hit it.

Pitching change

Puerto Rico will now lean on Edwin O Diaz, perhaps the best late-inning reliever in baseball to slam the door shut.
3 out

Vazquez gets all heat and swings through strike three to end the inning. The Dominican Republic will have just three outs to get back in the game

Christian Vazquez will now see if he can get something started here
2 out

Rosario fights off a few pitches before going after a low splitter and coming up empty. Two away

Eddie Rosario will stand in now
1 out

The 2-2 delivery is ripped to third on the ground. Machado fields it cleanly and makes the play at first for out number one.

Top 9th

Javi Baez leads off for Puerto Rico and he fouls four off before taking a couple balls.

Pitching change

The Dominican Republic will bring on Hector Neris to see if he can shut down Puerto Rico and give his team a chance to come back.
3 out

The payoff pitch is tapped to third. Rivera gobbles it up and throws him out to retire the side.

Wander Franco comes to the plate and shows good disciline, working the count full.
2 out

Eloy Jimenez gets three sinkers and goes down swining for the second out.
1 out

Bottom 8th

Rafael Devers will lead off and chops one to Javi Baez at second. The throw to first is in time and it is one away.

Pitching change

Puerto Rico will call on Duane Underwood Jr. to take over on the mound
3 out

Emmanuel Rivera jumps on the first one, but the best he can do with it is a slow roller to short. Marte throws it to first to retire the side
2 out

He fights off some fast ones, one even at 102 again, before getting called out on a beautiful cutter at the top of the zone. Two down

MJ Melendez will step up to the plate now.
1 out

The fireballing continues from Doval. He has almost unhittable heat. It isn't just the speed, it is the ride. Kike gets three of them, the last one at 102mph. One down.

Top 8th

Kike Hernandez will lead off and Doval will stay out on the mound for the DR
3 out

With the count full, Machado gets jammed. His bat shatters on the swing and the ball bounces to third for the routine throw to first to end the inning.

Manny Machado now gets similar treatment. Lopez has such great movement on his pitches and he is painting the edges of the strike zone.
2 out

Julio Rodriguez now in and watches a called strike three for the second out.
1 out

Soto gets frozen on a change up that dips into the bottom of the zone for a called strike three.

Bottom 7th

Lopez will face the meat of the order here with Juan Soto leading off.

Pitching change

Puerto Rico will tap Jorge Lopez to replace Nicholas Padilla on the mound.
3 out

Doval feeds Lindor nothing but fire. 100mph strike, 100mph strike, 101mph ball, 101mph strike.

What a way to get out of trouble.

Francisco Lindor will face Doval with Maldonado on first and two outs here in the seventh.

Pitching change

Rodney Linares will head out to the mound to make the pitching change. He signals the bullpen and calls for Camilo Doval to replace Diego Castillo.

Martin Maldonado comes to the plate and a pitch inside clips his elbow. Maldonado takes first base on the HBP
2 out

Vimael Machin jumps on the first pitch and hits it out to center for Rodriguez again. Same place, same result. Two away.
1 out

Vazquez hits one to straightaway center field and Rodriguez pulls it in for the first out.

Top 7th

Christian Vazquez will lead off for Puerto Rico in the seventh and face Diego Castillo.
3 out

Mejia stands in now and attacks the first pitch and lines one out to right field. Melendez tracks it down and puts it away for the third out.

Candelario now comes to the plate and pooches one back to the pitcher. He beats it out for an infield single. Jimenez advances to third.
2 out

Marte rips a laser beam to right field and Melendez charges it and makes the catch. What a play! Two outs.
1 out

Wander Franco jumps on the first pitch and it goes straight up the middle. With the runner on second, Lindor is positioned right there. He grabs it and it spins him around, but Lindor makes the throw to first for the out.

He missed a home run by about a foot.

Bottom 6th

Eloy Jimenez will lead off the Dominican Republic here in the sixth. He crushes one off the wall in left center field for a stand up double to start the inning!

Pitching change

Puerto Rico will dip into their bullpen and grab Nicholas Padilla to take over on the mound.
3 out

He smacks the payoff delivery back to center field. Julio Rodriguez gets under it and retires the side.

He works the count full

Eddie Rosario comes to the plate now
2 out

Javi Baez jumps on the first pitch and hits it to the gap in left. Long, near the warning track, Julio Rodriguez is on his horse and makes the diving catch! Two away. What a great catch!
1 out

Top 6th

Emmanuel Rivera will lead off for Puerto Rico here, and he gets three sliders that he whiffs at for the first out.

Pitching change

The Dominican Republic will ask Diego Castillo to take over on the mound.
3 out

Rafael Devers stands in and hits one straight up in the air. Just behind third base and Rivera gets under it to haul it down and end the inning.
2 outs

A hard chopper to short and Lindor flips it to Baez who throws to Machin for the double play. 6-4-3

Mejia scores on the play and Soto moves to third.

The Dominican Republic need runs, and this is just the guy to give it to them. He is one of the best there is.

Manny Machado at the plate now with the bases loaded.

He puts a soft liner into left field. The runners all advance a base, but it was too shallow to score on, so the DR have runners on all three bases with nobody out.

Rodriguez has just been the goat in the last inning, can he redeem himself here?

Runners now at first and second with Julio Rodriguez at the plate.

Another ball and Soto walks. Maldonado has to settle Diaz down.

Juan Soto comes to the plate and Diaz is still having trouble hitting the zone. 3-1

On four straight pitches, Diaz walks Mejia

Bottom 5th

Francisco Mejia will lead off for the Dominican Republic

Pitching change

Alexis Diaz replaces Yacksel Rios on the mound for Puerto Rico.

Kike tag at third

This was really, really close

Francisco Lindor inside the park home run

This is something you don't see too often at this level.
3 out

He goes down swinging to end the inning, but Puerto Rico are just grinding away. They are really having fun now!

MJ Melendez comes to the plate now with two outs and the bases empty.
2 out

The call on the field is upheld. That was really close. He was probably safe, but it could not be definitively overturned.

Kike Hernandez rips one into the gap in right. He comes around two and tries to stretch it to third. They call him out. PR are going to challenge it.
PR score

Francisco Lindor lines one to center field. Rodriguez charges it, then hesitates. The ball gets by him! Lindor is off to the races! He rounds second, heads to third. The cutoff is bobbled and Lindor heads home!

1 out

Top 5th

Martin Maldonado will lead off and lines one to left, but directly at Soto. One down.

Pitching change

Yimi Garcia replaces Rafael Montero on the mound for the Dominican Republic.
3 out

He rips a bullet to first, directly at Machin, who grabs it for the third out!

Jeimer Candelario will now take his chances at the plate

He finally gets the change up and Marte slaps it through the middle infield into center for a two-out single.

Ketel Marte comes to the plate and gets all fastballs. He fouls them off to get to 0-2
2 out

Franco lines one to short for the second out. Francisco Lindor went up and nabbed it.

Wander Franco now for the DR
1 out

He hits a hard bouncer to third and Rivera makes the throw across the diamond to get the first out

Bottom 4th

Eloy Jimenez will lead things off for the Dominican Republic in the 4th
3 out

After attacking the plate with fastballs, a change up is offered which Machin flies out into left center. Soto shses it down and makes the catch to end the inning.

Vimael Machin stands in now
2 out

The payoff pitch is a four seamer, foul tipped stright into the catcher's mitt for out number two.

Fastballs and sinkers run the count full to Vazquez

Christian Vazquez comes to the plate now.
1 out

Top 4th

Eddie Rosario will lead off for Puerto Rico and jumps on the first pitch. A long fly ball to right field will be taken by Eloy Jimenez for out number one.

Pitching change

Rafael Montero replaces Bryan Abreu on the mound
3 out

Rafael Devers comes to the plate and attacks the first pitch for a hard ground ball to second. Javi Baez makes the play at first to retire the side.
2 out

A great cutter gets Machado swinging for the second out.

Machado fouls them off for 0-2

Rios is a fireballer and comes with straight heat, all at 100mph

Manny Machado will be the first hitter to face Rios.

Pitching change

Moran has done well, but Yadier Molina makes the walk out to the mound. It looks like that is going to be the end of his evening. Yacksel Rios will get the call to take over
1 out

Rodriguez gets a steady diet of fastballs, which he fouls off, before a nasty little change up gets him to chase for strike three.

Julio Rodriguez now steps to the plate

That was 448 feet, which ties Shohei Ohtani's mark for the longest home run hit in this WBC
DR scores

Soto skies one to deep center field. It floats and floats and it is gone! Well, you wanted an answer? There is your answer! The DR claw one back.

Bottom 3rd

Juan Soto will lead off for the Dominican Republic.

Maldonado bunt single

As promised, here is that bunt. Watch it. Then watch it again. It is that good
3 out

Another low slider for a swing and miss to end the inning. My oh my was that a huge inning for Puerto Rico! The Dominican Republic have to find an answer immediately or it is going to be a long night.

He fights off two more with fouls before getting a ball to take the count to 1-2

Javi Baez comes to the plate now and chases two quick low sliders to get into a hole, 0-2
2 out

Emmanuel Rivera hits a pop fly to shallow center field. It is taken by by Rodriguez for the second out.
1 out

On the payoff, Kike takes off. Melendez rolls a soft ground ball to second. There is no chance for the double play, so Marte goes to first to get the out. Lindor scores from third and now you have Kike on second with one out.

He works the count to full.

MJ Melendez now stands in and gets a 99mph fastball for a strike.
PR scores

He chops a huge one over the head of Machado and into left. Maldonado scores from second and Lindor slides into third base. Safe! Puerto Rico add to their lead. 3-0 with nobody out. Runners at the corners

Maldonado pulls up at second and now Kike Hernandez will come to the plate with runners on first and second. This stadium is rocking!
PR scores

Lindor lines one into center for a base hit. Machin hustles around third and scores! 2-0 Puerto Rico.

Francisco Lindor will face Abreu and gets a slider for a strike.

Pitching change

That is going to be it from Johnny Cueto. Bryan Abreu gets the call for the DR

I will look on twitter and see if I can find a video of that play, because describing it is not enough. You have to see it!

Maldonado squares a bunt past Cueto on the first base side. It is fielded by Candelario and there is some confusion over who is going to cover the bag. Cueto runs that way and Maldonado dives headfirst and beats it out. Everybody safe! That is insane!

Martin Maldonado now comes tot he plate with nobody out and a runner on first.

Vimael Machin now at the plate and he takes a high fastball the other way to the gap in left for a single. The Dominican Republic is on the ropes.
PR score

Top 3rd

Christian Vasquez leads off and gets a fastball that he likes. He whacks a bomb into deep left field! It is GONE! Puerto Rico strike first!
3 out

Moran's delivery is a change up in the dirt that fools Mejia! Swing and miss for strike three. Maldonado applies the tag to end the inning and Puerto Rico dig themselves out of a hole there!

If he loses Mejia, Juan Soto is on deck.

Moran comes with three change ups and a fastball to make it 2-2
Wild pitch

The second pitch from Moran is in the dirt and it squirts past Maldonado. Both runners advance!

Francisco Mejia will face Moran now with runners on first and second and two outs.

Pitching change

Yadi comes out to the mound and takes the ball off of Cruz. It just wasn't his night. He definitely has good stuff, but when it ain't working, it just ain't working.

Molina signals for the left-hander Jovani Moran to take over.

Candelario draws the walk on four straight pitches and that looks like it is going to be it from Cruz.

Jeimer Candelario is up now and Cruz is still having trouble finding that pitch. The Dominicans are happy to be patient and the count runs to 3-0
2 out

Ketel Marte chases the first pitch and skies it to shallow right. Malendez camps out under it for the second out.

Wander Franco sees a couple of splitters and then a fastball that he hacks into the gap in left. It drops in for a single.
1 out

Bottom 2nd

Eloy Jimenez comes to the plate in the 2nd and hits one hard to center field, but not a problem for Kike, who pulls it in for the first out.
3 out

Eddie Rosario comes to the dish and check-swings a low breaking ball, rolling it softly to second for the easy putout at first to end the inning.
2 out

Javi Baez comes to the plate and bangs a hard shot to third. Machado comes up with it and goes to second. 5-4-3 double play!

The 2-2 delivery is smacked hard up the middle for the first base hit of the game, and Rivera leads off with a single.

Top 2nd

Emmanuel Rivera will lead off in the second
3 out

The 2-2 pitch is that gorgeous change up and Devers hacks away but comes up empty handed to end the inning.

Rafael Devers stands in and gets a good fastball. He takes a healthy cut but comes up empty. Cruz lis now finding a bit more control over that pitch. Another fastball is slightly up buts gets called a strike. Devers can't believe it.
2 out

Manny Machado comes to the plate now and he has been the real weapon for the DR. He pops the first pitch straight into the air. Machin comes in and makes the catch, onluy about three or four feet in front of the plate. Out number 2
1 out

A beautiful little change up gets Rodriguez to chase again for strike three.

His slider is working better for him and he gets Rodriguez to chase. It is 2-2

Julio Rodriguez comes to the plate now and Cruz is still having some trouble. I'm not sure if there is a problem feeling the seams or if there is an issue with the feel for the ball, but that four seamer is just flying away, all up, and way up above the zone.

That pitch got away from him and just sailed high for ball four. That is the second one and it looks like he is having trouble finding his groove.

A change up misses inside and Cruz is down in the count 3-1

Soto watches a first pitch strike before taking two that missed the zone. 2-1

Bottom 1st

Francisco Cruz will take the mound for Puerto Rico and face Juan Soto to start things off in the bottom of the first.
3 out

MJ Melendez comes the plate and gets fastball, slider, fastball. Foul, foul, called strike. And just that quickly, the inning is over!
2 out

He gets jammed and nubs a high popup to shallow left for Soto. He brings it in for the second out.

Kike Hernandez will stand in and face that little shimmy that Cueto does.
1 out

First Pitch

Johnny Cueto will face Francisco Lindor to get going and he delivers straight heat, getting an out in only three pitches!

It is a glorious evening in Miami as these two powerhouses of baseball face off. In neighboring Caribbean islands, baseball is more than a sport, more than a passion, it is almost a religion, and Puerto Rico against the Dominican Republic is a do-or-die game is one of life's great events. A true bucket list event.

This game is going to go off!

The heart of baseball

This is baseball in its truest form

Dominican Republic lineup

Soto LF

Rodríguez CF

Machado 3B

Devers DH

Jiménez RF

Franco SS

Marte 2B

Candelario 1B

Mejía C

Puerto Rico Lineup

Lindor SS

Hernández CF

Melendez RF

Rivera 3B

Báez 2B

Rosario LF

Vázquez DH

Machín 1B

Maldonado C

Starting pitchers

The Dominican Republic will call on 37-year-old Johnny Cueto to lead the charge into this affray. A hard fastballer, the White Sox pitcher signed a one-year deal with Miami last month and will lean on a four-seamer, sinker, and slider. He is a career 3.44 ERA pitcher with 1812 strikeouts over 2192.2 innings pitched.

Puerto Rico will give the nod to Cincinnati Reds starter Fernando Cruz. Dreafted as an infielder back in 2007, he made the switch to pitcher over a decade ago and has spent most of his career in independent leagues and the Mexican league. Signed by Cincinnati last year, he was called up at the end of the season where he posted a respectable 1.23 ERA and 21 strikeouts in only 14.2 innings pitched.

There perhaps has never been a more anticipated matchup between any two rivals than tonight’s game between these two baseball-obsessed islands. The atmosphere at loanDepot park will be unlike anything most people have seen. Think of a World Series Game 7 but with even more passion. This will be baseball in its purest form.

Welcome to our LIVE coverage

Welcome to the live commentary coverage of the Puerto Rico vs Dominican Republic game here with Diario AS USA.

This is a win-or-go-home game for both of these teams. With Venezuela stunning Pool D and going undefeated, both the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico are sitting at 2-1. A win sees either of them claim the second quarterfinal spot in the pool. A loss and they pack their bags for home.

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