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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Let’s start todays blog with the game against Team USA. First of all I was very nervous. I got the adrenaline flowing as soon as I woke up that day. Just to let you know, I couldn’t eat before the game. I was so pumped for that game and now the people in Mexico know what kind of quality we have. Team USA got away with a win. We both have good pitching staffs and the game was very close, but they were a little better on that day.
Next up for us was South Africa. Everything went well for us and we won 10-4. I hit my first home run of the Classic. I am starting to get into that rhythm and get in season shape. The rest of the lineup is getting loose with the bats and looking relaxed at the plate and thankfully we hit well against South Africa. We hope it’s the beginning of good things to come and we score a lot of runs. Today’s game with Canada will be a great match just like the game against the USA.
Today we win or we go home, it’s just that easy. And I don’t think anyone wants to go home yet. Whoever wins is going to the next round for sure, and Canada doesn’t want to lose to us. So we we’re going to go out there and bust our butts. Everyone is going to do his part and hopefully we do it together and wrap it up.
The best part has been the Mexican fans. They come from back home to support us and they realize what kind of baseball we are playing. They have been really supportive and that’s the most important thing for me. I want to thank all the Mexican fans, because we are playing for them and our country.
Its been a great adventure and the WBC is a great event. It’s unbelievable and I’m just so proud to be playing for my country. In the back of my mind I feel bad leaving my team behind in Tampa, but they are supporting me and even our new manager Joe Maddon is supporting me while I’m here and playing against all these all stars. It doesn’t get any better than that and I’m enjoying every single minute of it
We played and exhibition game in Tucson against the Diamondbacks and it was great. The whole stadium was for Mexico. It’s right there on the border and that’s what we want. The support out here has been great and we want to take advantage of that. It’s going to be huge and we are excited about it and we are going to do our best.
I have a lot of family coming out for this. My family and friends are all going to be here all with the big sombreros rooting for the team. They got in late last night and got to mingle with the players from the USA and Canada and South Africa and that’s a thrill for them as it is for me. That’s the beauty of baseball. You never know where you are going to be and in what situation..
We play the USA today and it is going to be a great game. Both teams are strong and have strong pitching and the best team is going to win.
Hello to my fellow MLBloggers. I’d like to welcome you to this new blog. Interacting with all the fans is something I’m looking forward to, and I’m interested in what you have to say through your comments here.
I am excited about starting another year of baseball with the Devil Rays, and this will be extra-special for me because I will be playing in the World Baseball Classic.
First of all, it?s going to be a great honor that I?m going to be with Mexico. Second, playing in the WBC, it?s not just baseball, it?s the whole country of Mexico. Hopefully people will realize there?s something more to Mexico than soccer.
I was asked here at Spring Training if I have any early predictions for this first-ever event. We?re hopefully in the semifinals: United States, Dominican, Venezuela and Mexico.
I am here with the Devil Rays at Spring Training in Florida now, and then I go to Team Mexico’s training camp from March 3-6 in Tucson, Ariz. Then comes our first game against the U.S. team on March 7 at Chase Field in Phoenix. I will be sharing my thoughts here during the WBC so I hope you’ll join me and feel free to leave comments.