WBC: Cuba 12, China 0

March 4, 2013 at 9:32 AM

FUKUOKA, Japan, March 4 (UPI) -- Jose Abreu and Alexei Bell hit home runs Monday in powering Cuba to a 12-0 rout of China that put the Cubans in the second round of the World Baseball Classic.

Abreu hit a grand slam in Cuba's sixth-run fifth inning and Bell hit a two-run homer that fueled a four-run rally in the fourth inning. The game was called after seven innings under the mercy rule.

Cuba improved to 2-0 in Pool A and will play Japan (2-0) Wednesday for the group title. Both are assured of moving into the next round, which begins Friday in Tokyo. China (0-2) and Brazil (0-2), the other Pool A teams, won't advance.

Cuban starters Danny Betancourt, 1-0, allowed one hit and struck out eight over 4 2/3 innings. China managed just three hits on the day.

Xin Lin (0-1) was charged with five runs on eight hits over 3 1/3 innings.

Frederich Cepeda opened the scoring with an RBI triple in the first inning and Abreu added an RBI double in the third. Bell's two-run home run and a two-run double by Alfredo Despaigne in the fourth made the score 6-0.

Jose Fernandez, who scored four runs, singled in two runs in the sixth before the Abreu grand slam.

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