With one mighty swing, Turner slams USA into semifinals

4:43 AM UTC

MIAMI – Jason Varitek did it in 2006. David Wright did it in 2013. 

A decade had passed for the reason that excellent Team USA player had hit an out of this world slam in the World Baseball Traditional. And when Trea Turner did it in the eighth inning on Saturday night at loanDepot park, he clinched a 9-7 comeback victory, punched the United States’s designate to the semifinals and handed Venezuela its first loss of the match.

USA will proceed its pursuit of consecutive WBC titles when it faces Cuba on Sunday (7 p.m. ET, FS1). 

“This day changed into as soon as electric,” acknowledged Turner. “The vitality is in the stadium, and we are able to feel it as gamers and I know the followers feel it as effectively.”

USA trailed 7-5 after Venezuela capitalized on the pitching miscues of Daniel Bard for a four-lumber fifth inning, and Luis Arraez hit his 2nd homer of the game in the seventh.

Tim Anderson opened the eighth inning by drawing a stroll against José Quijada, and Pete Alonso delivered a pinch-hit single. Quijada hit J.T. Realmuto to load the bases with none out for Turner, who had been 0-for-3 on the night.

Venezuela known as for a pitching exchange to possess Silvino Bracho face the shortstop. As Turner took the steps toward home plate, he quietly reminded himself of a crucial mantra because the stadium blared around him.  

“‘You’re honest sufficient for this,’” he recounted. “The self talk’s there. I know all individuals does their very possess factor, but just strive to compete. I did no longer know great about the pitcher throwing, so for me just strive no longer to develop too great. I’ve obtained Mookie [Betts] and [Mike] Trout in the encourage of me, so the lineup’s loopy. Or no longer it is just preserve the road transferring and develop honest selections and just react.”

Demonstrating point of curiosity, Turner didn’t receive rattled by an 0-2 count. When he noticed an 85.5 mph changeup from Bracho, he crushed it 407 feet deep into the left-field seats. Bases cleared, and USA jumped ahead on the scoreboard.

“Trea Turner stepped up just with a 0-2 absolute bomb,” acknowledged supervisor Imprint DeRosa.

Turner, 29, has regarded in 43 playoff video games in his immense league occupation, including the 2019 World Sequence with the Nationals. He has linked for three home runs in 185 at-bats. For all those electric moments in October, his necessary slam in mid-March had a sure significance. 

“Personally, I mediate right here is doubtlessly the best hit that I’ve had,” he acknowledged. “… As a workforce, I mediate you hiss a aim – and we resolve to maintain the final factor. … We’re no longer performed but. … I am contented we won and we are able to roughly preserve striving for that aim. However in my belief, it changed into as soon as roughly, it changed into as soon as lovely immense for me in my belief.”

Turner, who signed an 11-one year deal price $300 million with the Phillies in December, is absorbing the playoff-stage vitality in the WBC two weeks sooner than the regular season begins. 

“Here is lovely great a postseason atmosphere, and we’re getting it honest in the center of Spring Coaching,” acknowledged Turner. “Or no longer it is a necessary workforce over there, and it practically makes me roughly decide to head play in iciness ball a little bit bit and survey how rowdy these followers receive. It appears to be like with out a doubt fun, and I changed into as soon as contented to be a phase of it.”

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