Thursday, November 15, 2007

USA places 1st, Aussies 2nd in respective divisions

Josh Hill
Josh Hill

USA 10 at Chinese Taipei 7

WP: Gronkiewicz (1-0) LP: Shen (0-1) SAVE:Booker (3)
HR: USA: Nix, (2) Ruggiano

Josh Outman (Philadelphia) struck out 8 over 5 innings, limiting hosts Chinese Taipei to 1 earned run on 3 hits to help Team USA to first place in the Group A Division standings.

Both teams played well, and the game was not determined until Team USA used a 3-run 7th inning to take the lead for good.

Jayson Nix (Colorado) cruashed a 0-2 fastball over the left field wall in to top of the 1st for the early lead. But Chinese Taipei answered back, with Chh-Sheing Lin singling his way onto base and then coming home on Chin-Feng Chen's double to center.

Evan Longoria (Tampa Bay) and Delwin Young (LA Dodgers) hit back-to-back doubles in the 4th and Justin Ruggiano (Tampa Bay) followed up with a single give Team USA a 2 point lead. They'd not hold it long though as a throwing error by Longoria combined with 2 singles and a double brought one, with a second runner coming in off Chai-Hsien Hsieh's sac fly.

Colby Rasmus (St Louis) lead off walk in the fifth was following up by Nix's single. The pair then pulled off a double steal before Andy LaRoche (LA Dodgers) knocked a ball into the right-center field gap to score the pair. Longoria would plate LaRoche to give Team USa a 3 run lead.

Chinese Taipei would not answer back until the bottom of the 6th, when Steve Shell (LA Angels) took over and got into trouble, hitting a batter and then giving up a single before issuing a walk to load the bases. Shell would be lifted in favor of Jerry Blevins (Oakland) to get Chai-Shien Hsieh to work to a full count before he ripped a double into left-centerfield to clear the bases and tie up the game again. Lee Gronkiewicz (Toronto) would come into shut down Chinese Taipei before they could do more damage.

Longoria kicked off what would be the decisve 7th inning with a line drive, and Young walked to follow him one bases. Ruggiano then hit a home run to bring in 3.

The teams would exchange 9th inning runs with Ruggiano hitting his second home run of the night for Team USA.

The tournament heads into elmination rounds on Friday. There is a note up that fourth ranked Panama is being reviewed for eligibilty issues.

Panama defeated South Africa 13-3, Mexico would defeat Italy 11-2 and Japan downed Spain, 4-3 to pick up 3rd place in Group A.

Team USA

Australia 7 at Canada 6

WP: Bright (2-0) LP: Richmond, S. (0-2)

Team Australia captured 2nd place in Group B with a 7-6 win over Team Canada.

Trent Oeltjen (Minnesota) reached on Matt Rogelstad's (Washington) fielding error, then stole 2nd to open up a back-and-forth game between the two teams. Brad Harman (Philadelphia) then ground out but moved Oeltjen to 3rd. Justin Huber (Kansas City) singed Oeltjen in, then came home on Ben Risinger's (San Diego) double to give the Aussies a 2-0 lead.

Team Canada took one run back in the bottom of the 2nd when Jimmy Vanorstrad singled and Jamie Romak (Pittsburgh) walked. A Chris Robinson (Chicago Cubs) double brought in Vanorstrand with 1 out, but starter Adrian Burnside (San Diego) got Sebastian Boucher (Baltimore) to ground out and Rogelstad to strike out to end the inning.

Burnside found trouble in the bottom of the 3rd though when he hit Kevin Nicholson (Independant) by a pitch. Jeremy Ware (Independant) gound into a fielder's choice that took out Nicholson, then advanced to 2nd on Mike Saunders (Seattle) bunt single. The pair then stole 3rd and 2nd respectively. Vanorstrand would single to bring in Ware, tying up the score. Romak would single to bring in Saudners, giving Canada a 3-2 lead before Taylor Green (Milwaukee) would ground into a double play.

Josh Hill (Minnesota) came into the game for the bottom of the 5th, striking out Ware. Saunders would double and advance to 3rd on Vanorstrand's right field fly out, but Romak ground out to end the scoring threat.

Harman lead off the top of the 6th when he reached on a throwing error, advancing to 2nd on the play. Huber's fly out moved him to 3rd. Risinger would get hit by a pitch. Glenn Williams (Minnesota) ground into a fielder's choice which brought in Harman to tie the score up. Team Canada would switch pitchers, bringing in Mike Kusiewiecz with 2 outs on the board. A fielding error allowed Brett Roneberg (Pittsburgh) to reach for Team Australia, moving williams to 2nd. Tom Brice singled to load the bases, but Scott Richmond would come into the game for Team Canada, getting Andrew Graham (Detroit) to ground out to retire the side.

Bourcher would reach on a throwing error by Harman in the bottom of the 6th with 2 outs and would come home on Rogelstad's follow up single to give the lead back to team Canada.

Oeltjen doubled in the top of the 7th, then came home on Huber's line drive with 2 outs to tie the score up again. Greg Wiltshire replaced Hill on the mound for the bottom of the inning, getting three quick outs.

The 8th would see Adam Bright (Colorado) coming in to pitch for Team Australia, but no change in the scoring.

With one out in the 9th, Luke Hughes (Minnesota) doubled and then Oeltjen walked. Harman doubled in Hughes and Huber was issued an intentional walk as well to load the bags. Mike Johnson (Independant) would come into the game for Team Canada to try to hold the Aussie's at bay, but Risinger would single off him to score Oeltjen and Harman, making it 7-4 for the Boys from Down Under.

Bright would walk Rogelstad before Brendan Wise (Detroit) would take over the mound for the the Aussies. Emerson Forstaad would walk and Nick Werglaz singled to bring in Rogelstad as the Canadians began a rally. Brad Thomas (Seattle) was brought into shut down Canada, but would give up a single to Sanders that scored Frostaad. But after a sac-bunt by Vanorstrand and a walk to Romak, Emmanuel Garcia (NY Mets) would hit into a double play, ending the game with the Canadians still down by 1.

The win means that Team Australia will face off with 3rd placed Japan for the initial round of cross over play. Australia has won 2 of the last 3 games between these 2 countries in international play and will manage to avoid both USA and Chinese Taipei for the first of the elmination rounds.

In other Group B play 4th ranked Korea downed Team Germany 8-1. Fomer Miracle Tim Henkenjohann took the loss, giving up 5 runs (all earned) on 9 hits and 3 balls while striking out 5 over 6 innings. Current Minnesota prospect Rodney Gessmann allowed 2 runs (1 earned) on 2 hits and 2 walks in 1 inning worth of play.

Team Netherlands would hand 1st place Team Cuba it's first loss of the tournament, defeating them 2-1 and earning 3rd place in Group B, and Venezuela would knock off Thailand 17-3.

Aussie play-by-play
Australian Baseball

No comments: