Martin Muzik hit a three-run homer in the top of the ninth inning to lift the Czech Republic to an 8-5 win over China at the World Baseball Classic on Friday in Tokyo.
The Pool B game was the opener for the Czech Republic while China fell to 0-2.
After Muzik's blast gave the Czechs a 7-5 lead, Petr Zyma doubled and Filip Smola singled for an insurance run.
Matej Mensik hit a solo homer and a double for the Czech Republic, which got four scoreless innings from starting pitcher Daniel Padysak. Marek Minarik tossed 2 2/3 shutout innings for the win.
Jinjun Luo, Pei Liang and Jin Yang hit RBI singles in a four-run seventh inning as China rallied from a 4-1 deficit to take the lead.
Japan 13, South Korea 4
Boston Red Sox outfielder Masataka Yoshida had a two-run single in the third inning to highlight a three-hit, five-RBI performance for Japan in Pool B action in Tokyo.
Kensuke Kondoh belted a solo homer and drove in three runs as part of Japan's 13-hit attack. Los Angeles Angels star Shohei Ohtani and St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Lars Nootbaar each had two hits and scored two runs for Japan (2-0).
The high-octane offense helped Japan overcome a sluggish start by San Diego Padres right-hander Yu Darvish, who allowed three runs (two earned) on three hits in three innings.
Eui-ji Yang launched a two-run homer in the third inning for South Korea (0-2).
Cuba 13, Panama 4
Yadir Drake went 4-for-4 with two RBIs and three runs scored as Cuba belted out 21 hits in Pool A action in Taichung City, Taiwan.
Chicago White Sox star Yoan Moncada and Yadil Mujica each had three hits and drove in four runs for Cuba (1-2), which snapped a two-game losing skid in the tournament.
Former big leaguer Ruben Tejada launched a two-run homer as part of a four-run second inning for Panama (1-2), which has lost two in a row.
Taiwan 11, Italy 7
Chin Chen scored on Kuo-Chen Fan's infield single to snap a tie in the seventh inning and lift Taiwan to victory in Pool A action in Taichung City, Taiwan.
Former Cleveland Guardians minor leaguer Kungkuan Giljegiljaw added insurance with a three-run homer in the eighth inning for Taiwan (1-1).
Padres catcher Brett Sullivan had three hits and Kansas City Royals infielder Nicky Lopez had three RBIs for Italy (1-1).
--Field Level Media