Venezuela’s first defeat in the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) came in the quarterfinal tournament game. They advanced to the quarterfinals with four consecutive wins in the group stage, but failed to overcome the wall of the United States. The starting second baseman, Jose Altuve (33), suffered a fractured finger due to an injury to the ball, and Venezuela was truly in mourning. 

Venezuela suffered a 7-9 reversal defeat to the United States at the 2023 WBC Round 2 Quarterfinal Tournament held at Londipo Park in Miami, Florida, USA on the 19th (hereinafter Korean time). They led 7-4 until the 7th inning, but collapsed after being hit with a home run by Trey Turner in the 8th inning. 

Venezuela boosted its momentum by beating its Central and South American rivals, the Dominican Republic (5-1) and Puerto Rico (9-6), in Group D of the ‘Group of Death’. After defeating Nicaragua (4-1) and Israel (5-1), they passed the first round group stage with all four wins, but ended the WBC with their first loss to the United States in the quarterfinals.  스포츠토토

What hurt more than the loss was Altuve’s sand dune injury. Altuve collapsed after being hit with a right hand by American pitcher Daniel Bard’s 5th pitch sinker in the 5th inning with no outs and 2-5 behind. It was a fast-flying ball with no bird to avoid, and Altuve was replaced by runner Luis Rengipo and fell into the game. 

According to local reports, including ‘ESPN’, Altuve suffered a fractured right thumb. His team, the Houston Astros, will release the exact injury status of Altuve after an additional examination on the 20th. 

In an official interview after the match, Venezuela coach Omar Lopez said, “I am very worried about Altuve’s injury. He feels sad and frustrated,” he said. “I hoped that all players who participated in this competition were healthy. When Altuve went down, he didn’t look good. At one point, the dugout went quiet. The whole team is praying for Altuve,” he said, hoping it wasn’t a big injury. 

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