Israel advances to next round of World Baseball Classic

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israel remains undefeated in the World Baseball Classic, with its third win on Thursday against the Netherlands.
Both Israel and the Netherlands are advancing to the next round of the WBC. Each played and won two games in their pool, and both South Korea and Chinese Taipei have been eliminated with records of 0-2. 

The Israel-Netherlands game determined who will be seeded higher in the next round, which will take place in Tokyo.

Two teams in each of the four pools advance to the next round.

Israel defeated South Korea in its first game ever in the World Baseball Classic in 10 innings by a score of 2-1. It went on to defeat Chinese Taipei by a score of 15-7.  The team appeared on the field for the national anthem with matching blue kippot.

This is the first year that the Israeli team has qualified for the quadrennial baseball tournament, in which 16 countries are represented. In 2012, Israel’s inaugural WBC team narrowly missed making the tournament.

The game marks the first time that American Jewish baseball players, including several current and former Major League Baseball players, are representing Israel in a world championship. World Baseball Classic rules state that players who are eligible for citizenship of a country may play on that country’s team. Ten current and former Jewish major leaguers representing Israel in the World Baseball Classic visited Israel in December in preparation to represent the country.

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