World Baseball Classic: Trea Turner’s grand slam launches Team USA into semifinals

MIAMI, FLORIDA - MARCH 18: Trea Turner #8 of Team USA wins a Grand Slam in the top of the 8th inning during the 2023 World Baseball Classic quarterfinal game between Team USA and Team Venezuela at CreditDepot Park on March 18, 2023 in Miami, Florida .  (Photo by Gene Wang/Getty Images)
Trea Turner played for Team USA at the eighth inning Grand Slam on Saturday in Miami. (Photo by Gene Wang/Getty Images)

Trea Turner blew up a stadium in Miami on Saturday.

After an eighth inning grand slam off Philadelphia Phillies shortstop, Team USA rallied to beat Venezuela 9-7 to advance to the semi-finals of the 2023 World Baseball Classic.

The Americans entered the half at 7–5 with six outs to eliminate after squandering a three-run lead in the fifth round. Venezuelan pitcher José Quijada, who interrupted the US rally in the previous frame, quickly got into trouble with a walk by Tim Anderson, a single by Pete Alonso and a hit by JT Realmuto.

Venezuela then replaced Quijada with Silvino Bracho, who faced a nightmarish task: the bases were loaded, there were no strikeouts, he was about to take on Turner, Mookie Betts and Mike Trout, and just in case things got bad, Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado loomed. He got off to a good start, beating Turner 0-2, but then he chain-uped and, well, look for yourself:

Turner knew about it as soon as it was done, and he made sure the American dugout knew about it too:

After the game, Turner was asked what role the moon shot played in his career. He said “It’s probably No. 1, wise by Homerand that he couldn’t think of anything better.

Pretty good for a tournament quarter-final that (ostensibly) doesn’t matter.

Venezuela put the US in its place, but it needed to catch up. They were previously on track for what would already have been a wild win as they hit four runs in the fifth inning after Daniel Bard lost his team and opened the door for Venezuela to take the lead. However, they lost stellar second baseman José Altuve to an on-field hand hit.

Prior to Turner’s helmet, most of Team USA’s runs were in the first inning, and they probably should have scored even more. The US started the game with five singles in a row, but Kyle Tucker’s entry to the base lanes gave Venezuela a breather and stopped the bleeding.

The win sets the US up for a semi-final game against Cuba at 7:00 pm ET Sunday (FS1).


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