Current and former Blue Jays players team up to demolish Great Britain in World Baseball Classic
The 2023 World Baseball Classic has already been so action packed, I'm not sure how anyone is even going to make it to the end of this thing.
On one side, Japan is destroying everything in their path. With Shohei Ohtani on the squad, this was to be expected. Team Japan is 4-0 after the latest 7-1 victory over Australia.
Then there's the Czech team, who is currently 1-2 and Puerto Rico, who is in the midst of a blowout as this article is being written. José Berríos took the mound for PR in the current game against Venezuela and had a hard time, allowing five earned runs in just one inning of work.
The biggest game to happen so far in the Classic was Sunday's matchup between Great Britain and Team Canada.
Now being referred to as "one of the worst baseball games I've ever seen" on Twitter, this game featured a combined 25 base hits, 26 runs, 20 men left on base, 23 walks and 19 strikeouts between the two. Canada emerged victorious, winning the game in 18-8 fashion thanks to contributions from multiple current and former Toronto Blue Jays players.
Otto Lopez, the lone current Blue Jay participating in the game, went two-for-five with two runs scored and an RBI. He played the full game, which ended after seven innings thanks to a mercy rule, at shortstop.
Tyler O'Neill of the St. Louis Cardinals went off, going four-for-four with four runs scored, four RBI and two walks.
On the mound, three of the six pitchers for the Canadian team have Blue Jays ties.
Phillippe Aumont, 34, had a four-year big league career with the Philadelphia Phillies from 2012-2015. He was acquired by the Jays in 2015 and made five appearances of 6.00 ERA-ball in 18 innings in Triple-A.
Curtis Taylor, 27, was a part of the Blue Jays organization in 2021, making 30 appearances and posting a 5.71 ERA in 34.2 innings, striking out 10.6 batters per nine innings.
Then there's John Axford, the lone former Jay who has played in the big leagues for the club.
Axford, now 39, was a relief ace in the making for the Milwaukee Brewers all the way back in 2011 but never quite replicated his successes from that year. He played for the Jays in 2018 and made 45 appearances with a 4.41 ERA and 97 ERA+.
He's had such an up and down career filled with roadblocks but seeing him on the mound for Team Canada was the perfect cherry on top for a largely successful big league career.