Korea 2, Chinese Taipei 0

Four Korean pitchers — including former Mets Jae Seo (above) and Randy Johnson-owner Mr. Koo — combined on a 5 hit shutout, setting aside Chinese Taipei in the inaugural World Baseball Classic contest.

The game drew fewer than 6000 fans to the Tokyo Dome, the poor attendence no doubt influenced by Alex Rodriguez’ controversial decision not to suit up for either side.

My own slate of business travel prevented me from watching the start of this one, so I’ll have to take the several dozen emails complaining about Big & Rich’s performance of the respective national anthems on face value.

A caller to Evan Roberts’ WFAN program early this morning declared, “enough about Chinese Taipei, what about Chinese Type B?”

Best WBC preview I’ve seen thus far comes from the New York Sun’s Tim Marchand, who compares calling Taiwan, “Chinese Taipei” to dubbing Team USA, “British Washington”.

Baseball always overcomes the crassness, ineptitude, and sheer stupidity of the people in charge of it, and it will do so again from March 3-20.

If someone had told you 15 years ago that the NBA would be kept afloat as a major sport even in part by guys from places like Croatia, you would have laughed in their face. Who’s to say that the WBC won’t lead eventually to an all-Russian Mets infield, a South African Dodgers rotation or something else strange and unimagineable? This may be a tertiary side effect of Bud Selig’s desire to sell Tony Womack jerseys in Minsk, but that doesn’t really matter.