Team Canada will look to upset the Team USA in a win and you’re in scenario at the World Baseball Classic. Canada will have 21 year old Jameson Taillon on the bump while Team USA counters with Derek Holland.
Team Canada defeated Team Mexico a day earlier in a heated affair that saw Canada beat up on Team Mexico literally after the benches cleared in the ninth inning.
Team USA asserted themselves against Team Italy backed by a David Wright grand slam setting up the all-important matchup.
In 2006, Team Canada pulled off a huge upset against the American squad but did not advance to the second round due to run differential. The Americans returned the favor in the 2009 tournament in a one run game.
The Canadians will be in a tough spot facing the lefty Holland as seven of their starting nine hitters bat from the left side. Team Canada is missing some key right handed bats in Brett Lawrie, Jason Bay and Russell Martin.
The American contingent will face Pittsburgh Pirates prized prospect Taillon for the first time. The 21 year old Taillon ended the season in double A last year and is currently ranked as the 19th best prospect in baseball by Baseball America.
Canada hopes to carry the momentum from their dust-up yesterday with Team Mexico and catapult themselves out of the first round for the first time in their tourney history.
Clayton Richer covers the Toronto Blue Jays for Rant Sports. Follow and interact with him on Twitter at @MLBHotCorner.