Detroit Tigers pitcher helps in biggest upset in World Baseball Classic history

In the first game of Pool B play at the World Baseball Classic, Australia caused one of the biggest upsets in WBC history by defeating powerhouse Korea, 8-7. The game started with 22-year-old left-hander Jack O'Loughlin, a Detroit Tigers prospect, taking the mound for Australia. He pitched two perfect innings, retiring all six batters he faced. Later in the game, Robbie Glendinning and Robbie Perkins, hit three-run homers to secure the win.

Detroit Tigers Opening Day Alex Herrera Casey Mize Tarik Skubal

Key points:

  • Australia caused a major upset by beating Korea, 8-7, in the first game of Pool B play at the World Baseball Classic.
  • Jack O'Loughlin, a 22-year-old left-hander who pitches in the Detroit Tigers organization, played a significant role in the win by pitching two perfect innings.
  • Robbie Glendinning, a minor leaguer with the Kansas City Royals, hit a three-run home run to put Australia ahead, and later made a smart defensive play to help secure the win.
  • Robbie Perkins, who last played in the U.S. in Class-A ball back in 2018, hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning to extend Australia's lead.

Detroit Tigers P Jack O'Loughlin is living the dream

“It was a roller coaster of emotions,” O'Loughlin said, speaking on the phone from his hotel room in Tokyo. “Every time you think you're at the peak, every time you get to what you think is the high point, all of a sudden, it gets higher. You get flooded with the emotions of excitement and nerves.”

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“There are emotions every time you look up and see the crowd,” O'Loughlin said. “Every time you look down at your catcher, you can see he has the green and gold on, and you're like, ‘Wow.' Everything starts from the get-go. It can sway things in the direction you want them to go, or it could go the opposite way.”

“Look, Australian baseball is rising,” O'Loughlin said. “We weren't ranked as high as Korea. We haven't performed as well as Korea in the past, but this is one of those times where we're a special group of guys, and we're making a push to show everybody else in the world just how good we are.”

The Big Picture: Australia Aims to Be Cinderella Story of 2023 WBC

The upset win over Korea is a significant boost for Australia's chances of success at the 2023 World Baseball Classic. The win gives them a 1-0 record in Pool B and sets them up well for the rest of the tournament. If they continue to perform well, they could become the Cinderella story of the tournament. For Jack O'Loughlin, the win represents the biggest moment of his career so far and could be a stepping stone to bigger things in the future.

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