Turner’s Grand Slam lifts the USA to the WBC semifinals over Venezuela

MIAMI (AP) Trea Turner scored a go-ahead grand slam in the eighth inning that led the United States 9-7 over Venezuela and into the semifinals of the World Baseball Classic on Saturday night.

Defending champions Team USA take on Cuba on Sunday night for a spot in the WBC championship.

Venezuelan second baseman and Houston Astros star Jose Altuve retired in fifth with a right hand injury after being hit by a pitch Daniel Barde. The Astros said there would be an update on his status on Sunday.

Trailing 7-5, the United States loaded the bases on a walk in the eighth, single and hit by pitch against the losing pitcher Jose Quijada. Silvino Bracho relieved and then Turner, the ninth batter in the US lineup, sent his 0-2 substitution 407 feet into deep left field for the third Grand Slam in Team USA history.

David Bednarthe fifth US pitcher, won. Ryan Pressly got three outs on defense.

Luis Arraezwho plays with the Miami Marlins at the stadium he will soon call home, hit two home runs for Venezuela.

The US team boasts a lineup of big names that many have chosen to repeat as WBC champions.

All nine batsmen in Team USA’s lineup are All-Stars, including the Los Angeles Dodgers right fielder Mookie BettsMidfielder for the Los Angeles Angels Mike Troutfirst baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals Paul Goldschmidt and Cardinal’s third baseman Nolan Arenado.

The United States is in the top six in the tournament in batting averages (.296), RBIs (34) and hits (48), and every US starter had a hit Saturday night.

Venezuela took a 6-5 lead in a fifth run after Ronald Acuña Jr. sacrificed the flight into deep midfield.

Salvador Perez drove in the tie-run with a line-drive double that sneaked just inside the left foul line.

Arraez hit a two-run drive to right field in the first, his first home run at his new home park, and added another in the seventh to give Venezuela a two-run lead. Arraez, the reigning AL batting champion, was traded to WBC hosts Miami Marlins this offseason after four seasons in Minnesota.

Bard replaces Starter US Starter Lance Lynn with a three-run lead in the fifth and burdened the bases with two walks, an infield hit and a pitch hit that injured Altuve.

Bard was dragged behind Gleyber Torres scored in a wild field to make it 5:3. Venezuela added their last three runs Jason Adamwho managed to get out of the inning in 10 pitches.

Team USA hit five straight singles to start the game. Betts led first with an infield single, then the speedster rocketed from first to third with Trout’s single, forcing Acuña to score through a throwing error.

Kyle Tucker also hit a homer for the USA

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Turner’s Grand Slam lifts the USA to the WBC semifinals over Venezuela originally appeared on NBCSports.com

Source : sports.yahoo.com

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