Reporting Mark Seelig
SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – It started to look like spring at AT&T Park on Friday as the stadium prepared for near capacity crowds expected to watch the final games of the World Baseball Classic starting on Sunday.
The tournament colors red, blue, yellow and green streamed everywhere in and around the ballpark, even the palm trees in Willie Mays Plaza.
Upwards of 100,000 fans are expected to jam the stadium starting Sunday night with the first of three games, said an official with the San Francisco Giants.
Japan, the Netherlands, the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico have all secured berths in the final three games.
Seven Giants players are participating in the competition overseen by the International Baseball Federation and Major League Baseball. Giants players were on the line-ups of the US, Puerto Rican, Mexican and Venezuelan teams.
Baseball fans with fresh memories of the Giants winning the World Series said they were expected a World Cup atmosphere around the ballpark as teams and players from all over the world arrived in the city.
“It’ll be similar to post-season. It’ll be people coming out either with or without tickets just to be part of the atmosphere and the feeling of what’s going on,” said Kevin Callahan, assistant general manager at Mijita and the Public House.
The two teams that survive the semi-final games on Sunday and Monday will compete for all the marbles in the final game on Tuesday.
AT&T Park officials said tickets are still available online as of Friday night.
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