The Classic is almost upon us. Yeah, baseball!!! So I'm going to get my predictions out early, so I can prove how smart I am, and how I know more about baseball than anyone else. Because that's what its really about, isn't it.
Round 1 - Pool A
China vs. Japan
Japan over China. The Japanese are already practising as a team, and they're ready for this. They've won it before, and they plan on winning it again.
Chinese Taipei vs. South Korea
South Korea over Chinese Taipei. The Taiwanese just played a 9-game series vs the Australian team, and finished 2-6-1. South Korea is a becoming a baseball nation, and this isn't the Little League World Series.
Game 2 Loser (Chinese Taipei) vs. Game 1 Loser (China)
China over Chinese Taipei. I'm going with the upset special and taking the Chinese. There is a lot of national pride involved in these games, particularly in Asia. Taiwan isn't playing well, and the pressure might be too much. This could go either way, but in the end, it doesn't really matter. One of these teams will win one game, and the other won't win any. It's a toss-up, but I'm taking the upset.
Game 1 Winner (Japan) vs. Game 2 Winner (South Korea)
Japan over South Korea. This could be an upset, but not a major one. Four years from now, it might just happen. I think the Japanese will win, but again, a lot of national pride, and it might be the best game of the Classic.
Game 3 Winner (Chinese Taipei) vs. Game 4 Loser (South Korea)
South Korea over Chinese Taipei. It might be a game, but I don't see the Koreans losing this one. Regardless of the past, South Korea is the 2nd best team in Asia.
Game 4 Winner (Japan) vs. Game 3 Loser (China)
Japan over China. National, regional, and Asian pride on the line, with the final in Tokyo. There are no sure things in life, but it would take an epic melt-down for the Chinese to win this game.
The final results:
Japan 3 - 0
South Korea 2 - 1
China 1 - 2
Chinese Taipei 0 - 3
Japan and South Korea advance to the second round.