MIAMI -- The dream matchup happened. Ninth inning. Two outs. One-run game. The best player on the planet, Shohei Ohtani, on the mound for Japan. His teammate and good friend, Mike Trout, at the plate for Team USA.
The count went full. Ohtani unleashed a vicious slider. Trout swung through it. And with it, Samurai Japan won the World Baseball Classic.
In a tense, anxiety-riddled game with a storybook ending, Japan capped a perfect WBC with a 3-2 victory over the U.S. in front of 36,058 at LoanDepot Park. The Japanese team held a potent U.