For Canada’s National Baseball Team at their World Baseball Classic qualifier in Germany, it’s so far so good.
A dominant 11-1 pounding of Great Britain in the tournament’s opener has them in strong position moving forward.
So what happens next for manager Ernie Whitt and company?
First, they will face the winner of Friday’s match-up between Germany and the Czech Republic in a Saturday contest (at 1 p.m. ET if it’s against the Czechs, and 7 p.m. ET if against the Germans).
If they win that, then they go straight to the finals at 7 p.m. ET for a chance to advance to the actual WBC in March.
Should the Canadians lose on Saturday then things get a little more complicated.
As a result of today’s victory, they can still lose their next match-up and make it to the finals (hence the “double-elimination format”).
To take that route they would have to win in a game on Sunday against the winner of Saturday’s game between Great Britain and the loser of tomorrow’s Czech Republic-Germany match-up.
The finals would then be a re-match of Saturday’s game.
Another note is that Shawn Hill, Canada’s starting pitcher against Great Britain, is ineligible to play anymore in the tournament.
This is because WBC qualifier rules state that no pitcher may throw more than 85 pitches for the duration of the tournament unless he needs more to complete a batter’s plate appearance.
All of Canada’s games will be televised on Sportsnet One.