Team USA defeated Team Japan 4-3 in round two of the WBC. Alex Rodriguez hit a single in the bottom of the 9th to guarantee victory. Chipper Jones and Derrek Lee also hit HRS to account for Team USA's other runs.

The game had some controversy. Japan appeared to have broken a 3-3 tie on a sac fly, only to have the play overturned because the runner left early. Replays showed that the umpires got the call wrong, so Japan should have been ahead late.

Until Rodirguez's clutch hit in the bottom of the ninth, Team USA's was 0-for-8 with RISP. Both A-Rod and Derek Jeter grounded into key double plays early, allowing Japan's starter, Koji Uehara, to hold the U.S. to one run despite giving up seven hits. Team USA faces Korea next.


Mon 03/13/06, 3:49 pm EST



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