Hi, everybody. I have to tell you, this has just been fun traveling around with this team. It’s been a lot of laughs along the way and to be here in Anaheim for the second round of this World Baseball Classic just means everything to us and to the people of Mexico. We are trying to prove to everyone that we are really, really doing it and we are going to make that dream happen.
There are a lot of Mexicans here in Southern California and in Arizona, too, and boy, does that help. We love the support so our fans back in Mexico, watching on TV, realize what kind of fans we have in this country. So far it’s been like a packed house, and for us that just makes it wonderful to play.
I know one thing . . . I heard about the Korean fans, with their cheering sections and their thundersticks. So there’s going to be competition on the field and in the stands, which means the team with the best fans wins. I like a lot of people in the stadium; I like the atmosphere it brings.
People have been asking me if I was shocked that we are seeded over the U.S. in this round. I wasn’t shocked at all. We played hard — it just came down to the combinations with the U.S. and Canada — because I guess we were all tied up. We just played hard, tried to score a lot of runs and our pitching really held up — they didn’t allow too many runs and that got us into first place. We didn’t expect this, but playing hard paid off for us.
I got a call today from my other manager, Joe Maddon, who wanted to know how I was doing, what was going on and what the scenarios are — which is good — I know they are supporting me in Tampa Bay. I think Joe knows that we are facing great pitching here in the tournament from the teams that we have played and that I’m handling it pretty well — especially after the Canada game. I felt like I was ready for the regular season and that’s how you want to feel.
My teammates and I feel like we are in mid-season form right now and we have a great team in the Major Leagues. Everybody is feeling confident and going out there to prove themselves. We really are the dream team from Mexico and we are going to play like that.
I’ll let you know how we did against Korea.
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