Nelson Cruz's homer capped the Dominican Republic's rally and set off bedlam at Marlins Park
From the moment the World Baseball Classic pools were announced, one game was circled on everyone's calendar: Team USA vs. the Dominican Republic, a showdown between the two nations that have produced more active big leaguers than any others.
We finally got to watch it unfold on Saturday night in front of an electric crowd at Marlins Park, with a mind-boggling 51 (!) All-Star appearances combined between the two starting lineups -- and man oh man did it not disappoint.
America struck first, building a 5-0 lead behind timely hitting and some suspect defense from the Dominican outfield. As you might expect from a team so loaded it could afford to hit Adrian Beltre seventh, however, the DR was far from done. A home run from
Team USA manager Jim Leyland called on
Alas, even 6-foot-7 fire-breathing demigods with sliders that alter the known laws of the universe have their off days, and Miller struggled from the get-go, plunking
To fully appreciate the crowd reaction, you can watch the full clip above. Or, for a rough approximation, you could sit inside of a jet engine, crank some thrash metal and watch this GIF:
Or this one:
If you're still not quite sure if the Classic means something, allow Cruz to set you straight: