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Minor League Ball Gameday, Thursday, March 23rd, 2017

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United States defeats Puerto Rico to win World Baseball Classic, and other news items from around baseball

World Baseball Classic - Championship Round - Game 3 - United States v Puerto Rico Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Good morning everyone and welcome to the Minor League Ball Gameday discussion thread for Thursday, March 23rd. Here are some baseball items worthy of your attention as the regular MLB season approaches.

****As you most likely know, Team USA defeated Team Puerto Rico 8-0 last night to win the 2017 World Baseball Classic. To be completely honest, this was the first year that I paid any real attention to the WBC and I found I enjoyed it. How did you feel about it? Had you paid less (or more) attention in previous WBCs?

****Today’s Spring Training scoreboard

****Next big project around here is a revised Top 200 list reflecting spring events. ETA is Monday.

****Baltimore Orioles prospect Chance Sisco hit a homer yesterday in the Orange Birds 7-4 win over the Tampa Bay Rays.

"We're not going to keep him here unless we can catch him," Orioles manager Buck Showalter told "And that's what we can do now. ... He's going to come in and catch three or four innings almost every day. ... The experience he's getting here is immeasurable.”

****Joe Clarkin at Beyond the Boxscore examines Rays lefty Blake Snell, breaking down his impressive stuff with charts and video.

****This looks interesting: Rahul Setty at Halos Heaven begins an introductory series of articles about Sabermetrics, beginning with the very basic question: why are sabermetrics important?

****At Fangraphs, Eno Sarris writes about Chicago Cubs infielder Addison Russell and “the perils of improvement.

****At The Hardball Times, Bruce Markusen has this marvelous article about the career of right-handed pitcher Bill Hands, viewed through the lens of his Topps baseball cards. The Topps airbrushing attempts of the 1970s are highlighted.