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Cuba, Japan, Chinese Taipei and the Kingdom of the Netherlands advance to the second round of the World Baseball Classic

Chinese Taipei vs. Korea Draws Largest Crowd Ever for a Baseball Game in Taiwan. Tickets Now On Sale for Second Round Games at Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan; U.S. to Begin First Round Play on March 8th in Phoenix, Arizona

Chinese Taipei and the Kingdom of the Netherlands have advanced from Pool B in Taichung, Taiwan to join Cuba and Japan, the top two finishers from Pool A that played in Fukuoka, Japan, to advance to Second Round World Baseball Classic games at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan. The crowd of 23,431 that watched Chinese Taipei play Korea in Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium on March 5th was the largest ever for a baseball game in Taiwan.

One game remains in Pool A - Japan vs. Cuba this Wednesday, 7:00pm local time, 5:00amET - which will determine seeding and matchups for the Second Round games in Tokyo that begin on Friday, March 8th.  The first two Second Round games in Tokyo will take place on Friday at 12:00pm local (10:00pmET on March 7th) and 7:00pm local (5:00amET), with matchups posted to shortly after the conclusion of Wednesday's Japan-Cuba game.  Both games will be shown on MLB Network and ESPN Deportes in the United States.  Tickets for Round Two games at the Tokyo Dome are on sale now and can be purchased online at

Additionally, First Round play for Pool C featuring the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Spain, and Venezuela, and Pool D, featuring Canada, Italy, Mexico and the United States, will begin on March 7th. Chase Field and Salt River Fields at Talking Stick in Arizona will host games in Pool D, with Salt River Fields hosting the opening game on March 7th at 1:00pm local (3:00pmET), between Mexico and Italy. Team USA, managed by Joe Torre, will debut on the night of Friday, March 8th vs. Team Mexico at 7:00pm local (9:00pmET), at Chase Field in Phoenix.  The winners of Pool C and D will advance to the Second Round, held at Marlins Park in Miami, Florida, March 12th - 16th.  Two teams will emerge from Japan and Miami and head to AT&T Park in San Francisco for the Championship Round, with the Semi-Finals and the Championship Game to be played from March 17-19.

The World Baseball Classic, which is officially sanctioned by the International Baseball Federation (IBAF), will for the first time in 2013 be recognized as the official national team World Championship, with the winner being crowned the 2013 World Baseball Classic Champion and the IBAF World Champion. In the U.S., all games will air on MLB Network (English) and ESPN Deportes (Spanish).  The World Baseball Classic is being televised by 36 international broadcasters in 13 languages in more than 200 countries and territories around the world.


About the World Baseball Classic

The World Baseball Classic is the premier international baseball tournament, sanctioned by the International Baseball Federation, and features the best players in the world competing for their home countries and territories.  More than 1.5 million fans from all over the world have attended the tournament games, held in March 2006 and 2009. Team Japan is the reigning World Baseball Classic Champion, taking home both the inaugural and 2009 titles. The upcoming World Baseball Classic will be played in March 2013 and will again feature the greatest baseball-playing nations in the world. The tournament will be held every four years thereafter.

About World Baseball Classic, Inc.

World Baseball Classic, Inc. (WBCI) is a company created at the direction of Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) to operate the World Baseball Classic tournament. The tournament, which is sanctioned by the International Baseball Federation (IBAF), is supported by MLB, the MLBPA, Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB), the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO), their respective players associations and other leagues and players from around the world.

About the International Baseball Federation

The International Baseball Federation (IBAF) is the world governing body for baseball, comprising 122 national member federations.  Together with its member federations, the IBAF is dedicated to the promotion, development, and organization of baseball around the world.  The IBAF is the sole entity recognized by the International Olympic Committee for overseeing and sanctioning all national team competition.  The IBAF headquarters are located in Lausanne, Switzerland.