A few days before the start of the World Baseball Classic, Team Israel’s backup catcher Nick Rickles tweeted out a photo of Team Israel and used the hashtag #ShockTheWorld.
That is exactly what happened this week, as Team Israel defied the odds of many, who thought Israel would not win a single game in Korea.
Israel would get out to an early lead in the Bottom of the 1st, as Ty Kelly drew a 1-out walk, Ike Davis singled him to 2nd & a double by Nate Freiman made it 1-0. Zach Borenstein grounded out, but score Davis & moved Freiman to 3rd. Lavarnway got another RBI by hitting a single to score Freiman to make it 3-0 Israel.
Randolph Oduber lead off the Top of the 3rd with a walk. Andrelton Simmons lined out, but a double by Jurickson Profar made it 2nd & 3rd. Xander Bogaerts grouned out, but score Oduber to make it 3-1.
Israel would get that run back in the Bottom of the 6th, as Israel loaded the bases and Borenstein did a perfect Tim Tebow impression by hitting into a double play, but getting an RBI in the process to put Israel up 4-1.
The Netherlands would get another run in 8th, but Josh Zeid managed to maintain the lead, giving Israel a 4-2 win over The Kingdom of the Netherlands and a sweep of Pool A.
Following the game, Peter Kurz, President of the Israel Baseball Association was so proud of how Team Israel played, before adding how interesting it would be to celebrate Purim with his players overseas. Tom Gamboa credited a lot of the good play to SS Scott Burcham.
They will begin pool play in Tokyo on Sunday, March 12th.