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Braun leads USA to victory in World Baseball Classic

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Milwaukee Brewers left-fielder Ryan Braun had two singles and scored twice Tuesday night as the U.S. crushed Puerto Rico 7-1 in the second round of the World Baseball Classic.

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Braun helped set the tone when he walked in the first inning and then hustled home on a double by Joe Mauer to the wall in left center.

Brewers catcher Martin Maldonado played first base for the Puerto Ricans. He went 0 for 2 with a pair of strikeouts.

Gio Gonzalez pitched five innings for the win as the Americans stayed undefeated after four games. They're in a Pool 2, a double-elimination bracket, and will face the unbeaten Dominican Republic Thursday night in Miami. The winner will earn a place in the semifinals in San Francisco.

Brewers crushed by Texas

Mark Rogers had another shaky start Tuesday as the Milwaukee Brewers got crushed by Texas 12-3 in an exhibition at Surprise, Arizona.

Rogers, who's competing for a spot in the Milwaukee rotation, had his third straight rough outing. He went one and one-third innings and gave up six runs, three earned, on three hits and four walks.

Rogers is putting Milwaukee in a rough spot because he's out of minor league options. He might have to go to the bullpen if the Brewers want to keep him. He's now 0-1 this spring with an ERA of 7.5.

Sean Halton drove in Milwaukee's only runs with a three-run double in the ninth inning.

Jeff Baker homered and drove in two runs for the Rangers. He now has a seven-game hitting streak and a .529 spring batting average.

The Brewers are now 7-9 in the Cactus League. They'll play their first night game of the spring against Arizona Wednesday evening.

UW-Whitewater the favorite in women's softball

UW-Whitewater is the pre-season favorite to win its first WIAC regular season softball title since 2009. Defending champion Eau Claire is picked to finish second in a poll by the league's coaches and sports information directors.

River Falls is projected to take third, followed by Platteville.

Whitewater has had 30 or more wins in four of the last five seasons. They return all nine starting position players from a year ago, including Emily Epifanio who was the league's player of the year. She batted .388 in 2012 with eight homers and 32 RBIs.

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