Press Release International Baseball Federation (IBAF), www.ibaf.org
Cuba, Panama, Netherlands, Canada improve to 4-0 – USA, Italy, Venezuela with 3 Wins
Panama City, Panama. The favorites at the 2011 IBAF Baseball World Cup didn’t miss a beat after the off day and continued to surge on Thursday as the competition resumes with eight games. In Group 1 three teams sit at the top of the standings with perfect 4-0 records, as Panama, the Netherlands and Canada cruised past Japan, Puerto Rico and Chinese Taipei. Additionally defending champion USA went to 3-1 with a shutout over Greece. In Group 2 Cuba edged out Olympic champion Korea to remain at the top as the lone undefeated team. Venezuela and Italy follow after victories in key matchups against continental federation rivals Dominican Republic and Germany. Australia ended its scoreless and winless streak against Nicaragua.
Netherlands 5 – Puerto Rico 0
The Netherlands didn’t miss a beat after the off day and shut out Puerto Rico 5-0 on Thursday afternoon at Rod Carew Stadium in Panama City. It was their fourth victory in as many games at the 2011 IBAF Baseball World Cup. A dominant performance by starting pitcher Tom Stuifbergen (W, 1-0) and homeruns of Sidney de Jong and Bryan Engelhardt led the way for the European powerhouse. Puerto Rico dropped to 1-3 with their only win coming from a thrilling contest against Team USA.
USA 3 – Greece 0
It took the USA two offensive innings to get a 3-0 win against Greece in the first game after the day off at the 2011 IBAF Baseball World Cup. A good performance by Greek starter pitcher Thedor Bourdaniotis, and his reliever Panagiotis Sikaras, with both able to stop the powerful United States bats, limiting them to runs in the first and fourth. The second BWC homerun by Matt Clark secured the American win.
Japan 2 – Panama 6
Not even the presence of Japan’s Ambassador to Panama, Ikuo Mizuki, could help the Asian baseball powerhouse in their meeting with Panama on Thursday evening at Rod Carew Stadium in Panama City. The hosts improved to 4-0 with a 6-2 victory. They scored three runs in the first three innings and three in the ninth to seal the deal, as they are on the verge of clinching a spot in the second round.
Canada 4 – Chinese Taipei 0
Canada picks up the fourth win in the Baseball World Cup and is still undefeated (4-0). The Maple Leafs collected eight hits on the day, however they were only able to covert these to runs four times. That was enough to beat Chinese Taipei who could not manage to push any runs across the plate . Canada was lead by two power shots over the fence, a solo-homer by Jaime Romak and a two-run homer by Tim Smith, and strong bullpen action to close the game.
Nicaragua 3 – Australia 4
Three pitchers led Australia to their first win in the IBAF World Cup. The Aussies beat (4-3) Nicaragua at the end of a very close game, in which the Central Americans lacked the timely hitting that could have reversed the trend of the game. Ryan Searle earned the win pitching 5 innings and allowing 3 runs, while Andrew Russell (3 innings) and Brendan Wise (who got the save) went scoreless. Nicaragua’s manager Dennis Martinez sent 4 pitchers to the mound. Reliever Juan Serrano suffered the loss.
Venezuela 6 – Dominican Republic 3
Venezuela went 3-1 in the tournament after a solid performance against the Dominican Republic. The Venezuelans scored 6 runs between the second and the fifth inning, forcing the Dominican staff to make two changes on the mound. On the other side, Venezuelan starter Yozmar Carreño allowed only two singles and two walks until the sixth, when, after two walks and a single, Jorge Guzman took the mound, but could not prevent the Dominicans from scoring three times on a sac fly by Dionys Cesar and a 2-run single by Juan Richardson, but the Caribbean comeback ended here.
Italy 7 – Germany 2
Italy collected their third win of the IBAF World Cup beating (7-3) Germany. A defensive error kept alive the first at bat of the Azzurri that took clear advantage of it, scoring four runs and setting the pace. A home run by Jairo Ramos in the sixth opened the score. The only inconvenience for Italy was a game delay of 30 minutes due to the danger of an electrical storm that spoiled Italy’s pitching plan and forcing them to go pretty deep into the bullpen.
Cuba 4 – Korea 1
A beautiful pitcher’s duel between Cuba and South Korea was sparked off by a two-run homer hit by second baseman Yulieski Gourriel in the fourth, after Alfredo Despaigne’s single off reliever Lim Hyun Jun, who had just entered the game, replacing Lee Chang Ho. Korea avoided the shutout in the sixth, but a two-run double by Alexei Bell secured the 4-1 victory in a rematch of the 2008 Olympic final in Beijing. Impressive defensive plays highlighted the contest.
Team Japan is solely relying on amateur players to compete in the Baseball World Cup. 23 players are from clubs in the Industrial League, Hiroya Kawamitsu came straight from University to Panama….The Netherlands won the first six games of the 2009 Baseball World Cup….The Japanese Ambassador to Panama, Ikuo Mizuki attended the game between Japan and Panama at Rod Carew Stadium…..Germany’s Donald and Sascha Lutz are brothers and collected one single apiece against Italy on Thursday.
Puerto Rico 1-3
Chinese Taipei 0-4
Dominican Republic 2-2
The luck of some of the undefeated teams in the 2011 IBAF Baseball World Cup will end over the next couple of days, as we are entering the final stretch of the first round. Since the teams will keep wins and losses from games against fellow qualifying teams, the weekend will be crucial. On Friday Panama and Canada will meet in a matchup of 4-0 clubs at Rod Carew Stadium in the evening. At the same time Team USA and the Netherlands will square off in Aguadulce. Also in Group 1: Japan vs. Chinese Taipei and Puerto Rico vs. Greece. In Group 2 Italy will try to dethrone Cuba in Chitre. Additionally Germany is playing vs. Venezuela, the Dominican Republic vs. Australia and Korea vs. Nicaragua.
Schedule, Friday, October 7
14h00 Japan – Chinese Taipei
14h00 Puerto Rico – Greece
14h00 Germany – Venezuela
14h00 Dominican Republic – Australia
19h30 Canada – Panama
19h30 USA – Netherlands
19h30 Italy – Cuba
19h30 Korea – Nicaragua
(local times Panama)
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