Rondon rejoins Cubs after emotional Classic

Rondon rejoins Cubs after emotional Classic

MESA, Ariz. -- Hector Rondon's two outings for Venezuela did not go well, but the reliever rejoined the Cubs on Sunday and said the World Baseball Classic was a good experience and he was ready to pitch in a Spring Training game.

Rondon served up home runs to Adam Jones and Eric Hosmer in the eighth inning as Team USA rallied for a 4-2 victory over Venezuela. He also gave up two runs on two hits, including a homer, in one inning against Puerto Rico on Saturday.

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"Any moment you go to represent your country, and be there for those fans, it's fun," Rondon said Sunday. "I know I had a bad outing that day [against Team USA]. ... It is what it is, and I enjoyed playing with those guys."

"He was really upbeat when I spoke with him," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "He says he feels great, and that's all I want to hear. We'll fine tune the location of his pitches."

The problem wasn't velocity, but location against Team USA, he said.

"They got me, but I'm happy," Rondon said. "I know we lost those games, but I was really happy to be there.

"It was a little tough for me because I missed the location and my balls went up. My arm feels good, and everything was good. My mind is really good, and I'll take that experience coming here and keep working. I'm really happy where I am right now."

The games at Petco Park were emotional, Rondon said.

"[Emotions] were really high, especially when you're representing your country," Rondon said. "Those hitters, they're really good. They know me, I don't know that much about [Jones], but now I know. I'm really happy, I'm really happy. I know I didn't have the success I wanted, but in my heart and my mind, I'm really happy."

The World Baseball Classic runs through Wednesday. In the U.S., games air live exclusively in English on MLB Network and on an authenticated basis via MLBNetwork.com/watch, while ESPN Deportes and WatchESPN provide the exclusive Spanish-language coverage. MLB.TV Premium subscribers in the U.S. have access to watch every tournament game live on any of the streaming service's 400-plus supported devices. The tournament is being distributed internationally across all forms of television, internet, mobile and radio in territories excluding the U.S., Puerto Rico and Japan. Get tickets for the Championship Round at Dodger Stadium, while complete coverage -- including schedules, video, stats and gear -- is available at WorldBaseballClassic.com.

Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.