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Baseball, Men

Date17 – 27 September 2000
StatusOlympic
LocationBlacktown Baseball Stadium, Blacktown Olympic Park, Blacktown, New South Wales / Sydney Baseball Stadium, Olympic Park, Sydney, New South Wales
Participants192 from 8 countries
FormatRound-robin tournament followed by semi-finals and final.

Cuba was still the dominant international team, but less so than in 1992 and 1996. Several of the Cuban players were defecting to the United States, lured by huge dollars from Major League baseball teams. And the International Baseball Association (IBA) opened up the Olympic tournament to professionals. Major league baseball did not release its players, however, so the USA team was made up of minor leaguers, several of whom were former Major Leaguers. The United States’ manager was Tommy Lasorda, formerly manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers. The first sign of Cuba’s weakness was shown in the round-robin play. The Dutch team upset the Cubans 4-2, with a 3-RBI double by former Major League player Hensley Meulens accounting for Cuba’s first ever Olympic defeat.

The final game saw the USA play Cuba, with Ben Sheets pitching for the Americans. He threw a 3-hit complete game shutout, and the United States won, 4-0. Lasorda, who had managed two World Series’ champions with the Dodgers, later commented that nothing could compare to winning an Olympic gold medal.

PosNrTeamNOCWLPtsRFRA
1United StatesUSA81164916Gold
2CubaCUB72145321Silver
3Republic of KoreaKOR54104530Bronze
4JapanJPN4584229
5NetherlandsNED3461929
6ItalyITA2543343
7AustraliaAUS2543041
8South AfricaRSA1621173

Round-Robin (17 – 24 September 2000)

Round-robin pool.

PosNOCWLPtsRuns
1CUB611250–17
2USA611242–14
3KOR43840–26
4JPN43841–23
5NED34619–29
6ITA25433–43
7AUS25430–41
8RSA16211–73
Game #117 Sep 11:30CUB 16 – 0
7-inning mercy rule
RSA
Game #217 Sep 12:30USA 4 – 2
13-innings
JPN
Game #317 Sep 18:30KOR 10 – 2ITA
Game #417 Sep 19:30NED 6 – 4AUS
Game #518 Sep 11:30CUB 13 – 5ITA
Game #618 Sep 12:30AUS 5 – 3KOR
Game #718 Sep 18:30USA 11 – 1
7-inning mercy rule
RSA
Game #818 Sep 19:30JPN 10 – 2NED
Game #919 Sep 11:30ITA 13 – 0
7-inning mercy rule
RSA
Game #1019 Sep 12:30JPN 7 – 3AUS
Game #1119 Sep 18:30USA 6 – 2NED
Game #1219 Sep 19:30CUB 6 – 5KOR
Game #1320 Sep 11:30JPN 6 – 1ITA
Game #1420 Sep 12:30NED 4 – 2CUB
Game #1520 Sep 18:30AUS 10 – 4RSA
Game #1620 Sep 19:30USA 4 – 0KOR
Game #1722 Sep 11:30KOR 2 – 0NED
Game #1822 Sep 12:30CUB 1 – 0AUS
Game #1922 Sep 18:30JPN 8 – 0RSA
Game #2022 Sep 19:30USA 4 – 2ITA
Game #2123 Sep 11:30RSA 3 – 2
10-innings
NED
Game #2223 Sep 12:30KOR 7 – 6
10-innings
JPN
Game #2323 Sep 18:30ITA 8 – 7
12-innings
AUS
Game #2423 Sep 19:30CUB 6 – 1USA
Game #2524 Sep 11:30NED 3 – 2ITA
Game #2624 Sep 12:30KOR 13 – 3
8-inning mercy rule
RSA
Game #2724 Sep 18:30CUB 6 – 2JPN
Game #2824 Sep 19:30USA 12 – 1
7-inning mercy rule
AUS

Semi-Finals (26 September 2000)

Single-elimination.

Game #126 Sep 12:30CUB 3 – 0JPN
Game #226 Sep 19:30USA 3 – 2KOR

Final Round (27 September 2000)

Medal round.

Game 1/227 Sep 19:30USA 4 – 0CUB
Game 3/427 Sep 12:30KOR 3 – 1JPN