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Sandoval homers before leaving Giants for Classic


SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Pablo Sandoval trotted off to the World Baseball Classic in style.

The Giants third baseman launched a solo home run Saturday at Scottsdale Stadium in his final at-bat before leaving camp to join Team Venezuela in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

It was the first Cactus League homer for Sandoval, who is hitting .500 (7-for-14) with two doubles and three RBIs in his first six spring games.

Sandoval is hopeful his production continues into the Classic. Team Venezuela is in Pool C, which is stacked with talented teams -- the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Spain. Even though Sandoval readily admitted his is probably the toughest pool in the tournament, he's eager to play for his country.

"One of the things when I went to play winter ball was try to get ready for the [World Baseball Classic],' Sandoval said. "I wanted to be ready to show my country that I'm ready for it 100 percent."

With such a stacked pool, Sandoval and Team Venezuela can't look too far ahead. But the third baseman said he has thought of the possibility of playing in the championship round at AT&T Park.

"It's going to be fun," Sandoval said. "A lot of stuff happened for me on that field, the [World Series] championship and [maybe] playing in the finals for the [World Baseball Classic]."

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