Team USA Prevails In Extra Innings…
Tokyo, Japan – Nick Ramirez’ (Cal State Fullerton) single in the 11th inning scored Ryan Wright (Louisville) from second base giving USA a thrilling 8-7 win over Chinese Taipei in pool play Sunday night at Meiji Jingu Stadium.
The game took two tie-break extra-innings to produce a winner, where both squads scored a run in the 10th before USA won the game in the bottom of the 11th. The International Baseball Federation’s (IBAF) tie-break rule, which was implemented in July of 2008, starts in the 10th stanza and each inning needed thereafter, base runners are placed on first and second with no outs.
With Wright on second and George Springer (Connecticut) on first, Ramirez celebrated his birthday by lacing a 1-0 offering from Wen Hsu back up the middle, easily scoring Wright for the walk-off win.
The 3-hour, 58-minute affair saw five lead changes and a combined 33 hits. Brian Johnson (Florida) notched the win working three innings of relief where he fanned five and allowed one run (unearned) on four hits. Starter Gerrit Cole (UCLA) fanned eight over six innings giving up two runs (one earned) on six hits. Noe Ramirez (Cal State Fullerton) and Scott McGough (Oregon) each tossed an inning of relief where they were touched for two runs.
Wen Hsu absorbed the loss allowing two runs on two hits in an inning of relief. Kuan Chen went five innings, surrendering two runs on six hits. Tsung Tseng and Yu Lin each gave up two runs on four hits in their outings on the bump.
Trailing 6-5 going to the bottom of the ninth, Wright knotted the game at six when he stroked the first pitch he saw from Yu Lin over the left field wall, sending the game into extra innings.
In the 10th, Wei Chen reached on bases loaded infield single that plated Chun Lin for a 7-6 advantage. Chinese Taipei started the frame with Hung Lai on second, Chun Lin on first base and Huang Chih at the dish. Chih singled to short loading the bases for Wei Lin, who reached on a fielder’s choice when Jason Esposito (Vanderbilt) gunned down Hung Lai at the plate.
Jackie Bradley, Jr. (South Carolina) tied the game in the bottom half of the tenth on his base knock through the left side that scored Mikie Mahtook (LSU) from second base. USA place Mahtook on second and Drew Maggi (Arizona State) on first and set their batting order to have Brad Miller (Clemson) leadoff the 10th, under the IBAF tie-breaker rules.
Chinese Taipei took an early 1-0 advantage in the first Chen Hung’s ground out to short that scored Hsien Yang, who doubled off Cole on the first pitch of the contest. Yang moved to third on a passed ball and trotted home during Hung’s at-bat.
Maggi gave USA a 2-1 lead in the third thanks to a two-RBI single through the left side that pushed across Peter O’Brien (Bethune-Cookman) and Mahtook.
After Chinese Taipei tied the game at two in the third inning, the game remained tied until the seventh when Yin Lan singled home Wei Chen and Chen Hung drove home Lan on a base hit to left before being put out at second base when he tried to stretch his single into a double, putting the score at 4-2.
Miller’s two-RBI pinch hit double in the bottom of the seventh scored O’Brien and Mahtook and tied the game at four with one out. New Chinese Taipei pitcher Yu Lin struck out Bradley, Jr. for the second out before Wright doubled home Miller for a 5-4 advantage.
In the ninth, Chinese Taipei took a 6-5 lead Kuan Yang’s single up the middle that plated Yin Lan, who doubled to right center scoring Yi Huang for the first run of the stanza, setting up the dramatic extra two innings.
The Collegiate National Team will be back on the diamond Monday, Aug. 2 when they square off against Canada at Yokohama Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 5 a.m. (EST).
(USA Baseball Release)