Do­mini­cans win World Base­ball Clas­sic

The Pak Banker - - INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS/SPORTS -

Tony Pena passed around the shiny tro­phy and let all of his play­ers of­fer their be­si­tos, or lit­tle kisses. Robin­son Cano passed around a phone as his team­mates took turns re­ceiv­ing con­grat­u­la­tions from Do­mini­can Repub­lic Pres­i­dent Danilo Me­d­ina.

''We ap­pre­ci­ate that from the pres­i­dent,'' Jose Reyes said. ''This win is all about the Do­mini­can Repub­lic. They were hun­gry wait­ing for this moment, and we did it.''

Cheers of ''Do­mini­cana! Do­mini­cana!'' rang out through the rain at AT&T Park all the way to the lively streets of Santo Domingo.

Ed­win En­car­na­cion hit a two-run dou­ble in the first in­ning that held up, and the Do­mini­cans capped a dom­i­nant, un­beaten run through the WBC with a 3-0 win against Puerto Rico for the cham­pi­onship Tues­day night.

''To­mor­row will be a na­tional hol­i­day,'' said Moises Alou, the proud Do­mini­can gen­eral man­ager. ''It was a tremen­dous win.''

Cano earned MVP hon­ors, Erick Ay­bar added an RBI dou­ble to back win­ner Sa­muel De­duno, and the demon­stra­tive Do­mini­can righty threw his arms into the air in de­light af­ter watch­ing a run-sav­ing de­fen­sive gem by cen­ter fielder Ale­jan­dro De Aza in a tough fifth.

The Do­mini­can fans - fa­nati­cos, in­deed - didn't let the Bay Area's wet weather keep them from danc­ing in the stands, wav­ing flags and toot­ing horns. Flags be­came makeshift pon­chos. It was fit­ting, too, per­haps, con­sid­er­ing the World Se­ries cham­pion Giants clinched the NL pen­nant against the Car­di­nals in a down­pour on this very field last fall.

Some 50,000 more sup­port­ers gath­ered to watch on televisions in­side and out­side of Es­ta­dio Quisqueya in the Do­mini­can cap­i­tal city.

''We want to en­joy ev­ery sin­gle moment, be­cause we don't know if this group will be to­gether again. I doubt it,'' Do­mini­can man­ager Tony Pena said.

Now, the Do­mini­cans get their long-awaited fi­esta. A party they fig­ured to have in 2009, when the Nether­lands spoiled the plan by beat­ing them twice for a stun­ning first-round exit.

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