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Netherlands defeats Israel 12-2 in second round of World Baseball Classic

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Team Netherlands got so far ahead of Team Israel in Monday morning’s World Baseball Classic game that the “early termination” rule was invoked, ending the game in a 12-2 victory after eight innings. The rule ends the game after completion of an inning in which a team leads by 10 or more runs after the seventh inning.

Netherlands scored early and often. It took a 2-0 lead in the second inning on a two-run single by Yurendell Decaster, then scored four more in the third on a two-run single from Wladimir Balentien, and RBI doubles by Didi Gregorius and Shawn Zarraga. In the fourth, Netherlands scored four more on another Balentien single and a three-run home run by Gregorius, pushing the score to 10-0.

Israel pushed a run across in the fourth inning on a Nate Freiman solo home run and again in the seventh inning on a Blake Gailen RBI single, reducing the deficit to eight runs.

However, in the eighth, Netherlands was able to invoke the “early termination” rule after scoring two more runs on a Gregorius sacrifice fly and a Zarraga RBI single. Israel was unable to score in the bottom half of the eighth, so the game ended.

Starter Jair Jurrjens pitched six outstanding innings for the Netherlands, giving up just the one run on five hits with no walks and five strikeouts while tossing 74 pitches. Juan Carlos Sulbaran, Jim Ploeger, and Orlando Yntema got two outs apiece to carry the team through the eighth.

Netherlands and Israel are now tied in Pool E with identical 1-1 records. Netherlands will face Team Cuba on Tuesday night while Israel will take on Team Japan on Wednesday morning.

Report: Brewers have made formal contract offer to Yu Darvish

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Yahoo Japan reported on Sunday (Monday there) that the Brewers have made a formal contract offer to free agent pitcher Yu Darvish. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic has confirmed Yahoo Japan’s report. The length of the offered contract and the value are not known at the moment.

Darvish recently said on his personal Twitter account that the Rangers, Yankees, Cubs, Astros, Twins, and “one more team” have been in the running for his services. The unnamed team was believed to be the Dodgers, but it may well be the Brewers.

The Brewers could certainly use Darvish’s arm. Chase Anderson and Zach Davies currently lead the starting rotation and the club added Jhoulys Chacin and Yovani Gallardo this offseason.

Darvish, 31, posted a 3.86 ERA with a 209/58 K/BB ratio in 186 2/3 innings between the Rangers and Dodgers in the regular season last year. He faltered in the playoffs, specifically in the World Series, where he gave up nine runs in 3 1/3 innings across two starts. Darvish was apparently tipping his pitches, however, which is a correctable issue.