Archive for the 'Canada' Category

Premier 12 Set for 2019

Wednesday, December 19th, 2018

The top 12 teams from the Premier 12 will compete in November 2019 for two spots in the 2020 Olympics. The 12 teams will be broken out into groups of four similar to the World Baseball Classic. These games will be held November 2-8 in Mexico, Taiwan and Korea. Two teams from each of these these groups of four will advance to the finals in Tokyo. They will play the games November 11-16 in the Tokyo Dome and Chiba Marine Stadium in pool play. On November 17 the finals will be held with the top two teams playing against each other and the third and fourth place teams competing for the bronze. This could be rather anticlimactic since the top two teams have already qualified for the Olympics and third place only gets you a bronze medal. But athletes play for pride.

The 12 teams that are eligible to compete are (in order of ranking):

1) Japan, 2) United States, 3) Korea, 4) Taiwan, 5) Cuba, 6) Mexico, 7) Australia, 8) Netherlands, 9) Venezuela, 10) Canada, 11) Puerto Rico, 12) Dominican Republic

Just missing from qualifying for the event are Panama, Colombia and Nicaragua, which finished 13-15 in the rankings.

Korea is the defending champions of the only Premier 12 to be played to date. The United States finished second and Japan third. The November time frame has been established to allow the countries to bring their top players to compete in this event. The professional leagues from Japan, United States, Taiwan and Korea will be over. Cuba will postpone their Nacional Series schedule as they do for the World Baseball Classic. It will be the best baseball has to offer outside of the World Baseball Classic.

Top 14 Countries for Women’s Baseball

Wednesday, December 5th, 2018

There are not as many countries that participant in woman’s baseball. Japan is the most dominant, currently carrying a 30 game world cup winning streak. Canada, the number two rated team came the closest to beating Japan in the World Cup, losing 2-1 in a Super Round game. Taiwan jumped three spots after finishing second in last year’s World Cup. Most of the top United States players are encouraged to play softball because of a lack of baseball programs for women. They dropped a notch after failing to medal the last two years. Below are the top 14 countries for woman’s baseball:

1. Japan - 2000 points
2. Canada - 1300
3. Taiwan - 1297
4. United States - 1094
5. Venezuela - 989
6. Australia - 904
7. Cuba - 537
8. Korea - 500
9. Dominican Republic - 433
10. Hong Kong - 363
11. Netherlands - 311
12. Puerto Rico - 267
13. India - 104
14. Pakistan - 67

United States Puts Exclamation Point to Under 18 Pan Am Championship

Monday, December 3rd, 2018

Myworld cannot recall such a dominant performance in a international tournament. The United States were in another league. After beating Panama in the Super Round 9-8 they got their chance to play them again in the gold medal round and won 17-2. Other than the 9-8 game no team got within seven runs. They outscored their opponents in the nine games 131-27, an average of about 12 runs more per game. It is the fifth straight Pan Am championship for the United States 18 and under team.

Bobby Witt Jr. was the big bat hitting for the cycle in a 4 for 5 day, driving in three runs. Corbin Carroll only collected one hit, but it was a homerun. He also drove in a team leading four runs. Tyler Callihan continued to be a hitting maching, going 2 for 4 with three RBIs.

With all the good hitting it is easy to ignore the pitching efforts. Jack Leiter pitched four innings of no hit ball, striking out nine.

In the bronze medal game Canada downed Nicaragua 5-3. LaRon Smith slugged a clutch two out two run homer in the eighth inning to break a 3-3 tie.

The United States, Panama, Canada and Nicaragua all qualify for the 18 and under World Cup that will be held in Korea in 2019. It will be interesting to see if the United States keep the same roster. Many of these players will be drafted in the first round of the major league draft. The United States won the last four 18 and under World Cup in 2017, 2015, 2013 and 2012.

Cuba did not get into the Super Round and failed to qualify for the 18 and under World Cup. The last time they won the event was in 2004.

Romak Leads Wyverns to Second Win

Wednesday, November 7th, 2018

The truly international baseball star Jamie Romak has been a slugging stud since his arrival in Korea. His 43 homeruns during the regular season was tied for second in the KBO. Yesterday he slugged two homeruns, his third and fourth of the playoffs to lead the SK Wyverns to a 7-2 win over the Doosan Bears. They now lead the best of seven series two games to one.

Romak hit his first shot in the opening frame, a three run blast that ultimately gave the Wyverns all the runs they would need. He added a solo shot in the eighth to flatten any hopes of Bears fans that they would come back. Merrill Kelly made the runs hold up allowing just two unearned runs in his seven innings of work. He gave up four hits, walked two and struck out five.

Lee Jae-Won hit a two run homerun for the Wyverns in the eighth to cap their scoring.

Jamie Romak is a Canadian who has played baseball in the major leagues, Japan and Korea, as well as winter ball in the Dominican Republic and Venezuela. His success in the major leagues (.167 average) and Japan (.113) were lacking, but he seems to have found a home in Korea. Or perhaps his bat is finally finding the sweet spot a bit more. He is still a strikeout waiting to happen, as his 123 whiffs in the KBO will tell you, but his batting average improved (.242 to .316) and his whiffs dropped from last year.

He has won a gold medal for the Canadian team in the 2011 Pan American games and bronze medals playing for the Canadian team in the 2007 and 2011 Baseball World Cups. The 2011 Canadian baseball team was voted to the Canadian baseball Hall of Fame. During his minor league seasons he did consistently hit 20 or more homeruns per year. In 2017 when the Padres sold his contract to the Wyverns he had hit 11 homeruns in just 25 minor league games with a .800 slugging percentage. So the Wyverns must have seen that power coming more to life when they scouted him.

Top Thirteen Baseball World Rankings

Friday, September 28th, 2018

The World Baseball and Softball Confederation has come out with their rankings of the top world baseball teams. The rankings go 73 deep but below is the top thirteen. The Top 12 teams are invited to the Premier 12, which is an Olympic Qualifier event.

1. United States (5515 points)

2. Japan (5245)

3. Korea (4534)

4. Cuba (3495)

5. Taiwan (3165)

6. Mexico (2672)

7. Netherlands (2263)

8. Australia (2233)

9. Canada (2142)

10. Puerto Rico (1849)

11. Venezuela (1809)

12. Dominican Republic (1481)

13. Panama (1475)

Japan picked up 146 points on the United States to close the gap on first place. Taiwan earned the most points in 2018. Latvia and the British Virgin Islands sit at the bottom of the rankings with one point each.

Japan Women’s World Cup Champs

Saturday, September 1st, 2018

Japan shutout Taiwan 6-0 to win the Women’s World Cup in baseball. Ayami Sato gave up six hits in her five innings of work but did not allow Taiwan to score. Akino Tanaka twirled the last two innings to close out the victory. Sato tied for first in wins with three, allowing just one run in her 19 innings of work.

The big bats of Lori Miura and Yuki Kawabata each drove in two runs to lead the Japan offense. Miura led the tournament in RBIs with 12.

In the bronze medal game Canada got some revenge on the United States and beat them 8-5 in 10 innings. Daphnee Gelinas blasted a three run homer in the fifth inning to give Canada a one run lead. Malaika Underwood tied the game with an RBI double in the bottom of the seventh.

Despite being able to place runners on first and second neither team scored for two innings. Canada erupted for five in the tenth inning, Daphnee Gelinas singling up the middle to score the first run of the inning. Ashley Stephenson ripped a two run single to close out the scoring.

The final standings for the tournament:

1) Japan, 2) Taiwan, 3) Canada, 4) United States, 5) Venezuela, 6) Dominican Republic, 7) Australia, 8) Cuba, 9) Puerto Rico, 10) Korea, 11) Hong Kong, 12) Netherlands

Women’s World Cup - Taiwan to Play Japan for Gold

Friday, August 31st, 2018

The United States won their game to stay alive, but Taiwan beat Canada to earn their trip to the gold, busting the hearts of the American girls. The United States will have to be satisfied with a bronze medal match against Canada.

Taiwan 6 Canada 4

Both teams erupted for seven runs in the first inning. When the dust settled Canada had a 4-3 advantage. Amanda Asay had the big hit for Canada with a two run double. Canada collected four of their nine hits in the first frame. Taiwan loaded the bases with one out in the second inning but failed to score. They scored a run in the third after a Canadian error to tie the game. Shih-Yun Lee rapped a single to break a 4-4 tie. Taiwan added another insurance run in the inning and held Canada scoreless after the first inning to come away with the victory.

Taiwan loaded the bases again in the fourth but could not score and put two runners on in both the fifth and sixth innings and again failed to score. They ended the day stranding 14 runners in only six innings, four less than the maximum. Chiao-Yun Huang recovered after a disastrous first inning and went the full seven innings to get the win.

United States 8 Dominican Republic 1

The United States scored six runs in the opening frame to glide to their win. All six runs were scored after two were out. The United States collected four of their seven hits in the first inning and had back to back to back hit batters to circle the bases. The Dominican Republic pitchers drilled six batters in the game. The United States countered with only one hit batsman. Kelsie Whitmore gave up an unearned run in the first inning but went four to get the win.

Japan 10 Venezuela 0

A game Japan did not have to win but they won with ease. Ririka Tabata drove in four runs to lead the Japanese offense. Japan used four different pitchers to prevent Venezuela from scoring, limiting the innings pitched so players could be available for the gold medal game.

Women’s World Cup - United States Stays Alive with Win Over Canada

Thursday, August 30th, 2018

Japan has clinched a spot in the Gold bracket with their win over Taiwan. The United States has to hope that Canada can beat Taiwan and the United States must still beat the Dominican Republic to send second place into a three way tie. The goal to break the three way tie is to win by as many runs as possible.

United States 5 Canada 1

Jade Gortarez got things started for the United States in the second inning with a booming three run homer to left field to erase an early 1-0 Canada lead. Megan Baltzell led off the top of the third with a blast over the centerfield wall to make it 4-1. The United States added another run in the third and from there cruised to a win, giving Canada their second loss in the Super Round.

Martina Sementelli gave up a run in the first but then shut down the Canadian bats for five innings. Megan Meidlinger closed out the ninth allowing one hit. In the last six innings Canada could only get one runner as far as second base.

Japan 2 Taiwan 1

In a game to clinch a gold medal appearance Japan squeaked out a victory. Chihiro Funakoshi drove in both runs with a single in the third to erase an early 1-0 Taiwan advantage. Asaka Tsuru tossed four innings of shutout relief to secure the win.

Taiwan scored their lone run in the second when Yu-Ying Hsieh tripled to drive in a run. Hsieh later tried to steal home and was caught stealing. Taiwan loaded the bases in the top of the third but failed to score. They also put two runners on in the top of the seventh but squandered that opportunity as well.

Venezuela 12 Dominican Republic 2

In a battle of the winless Venezuela prevailed. Back to back five run innings in the second and third put the game out of reach. Freymar Suniaga drove in four runs for Venezuela. The 8th and 9th hitters in the order Yohelis Colina and Esquia Rengel each drove in three runs.

Japan Shuts Out United States in World Cup

Wednesday, August 29th, 2018

Japan 3 United States 0

The United States bats have gone cold facing some of the talented Asian pitching. They scored only three runs when Taiwan upset them in their last game of pool play. In their first game of the Super Round Ayami Soto silenced the United States bats on one single. She went through the minimum 23 hitters in the complete game victory. Megan Baltzell finally touched her for a single in the seventh inning for the lone hit.

Japan scored their three runs early. The first scored on a sacrifice fly in the first inning by Lori Miura. Tomomi Nakada had started the game early with a single, stole second and advanced to third on a ground out.

Sloppy play led to two Japanese runs in the second inning. An error to lead off the inning, stolen base, bunt single and wild pitch scored the first run. Another United States error allowed the second run to score. The loss eliminates the United States from any gold medal participation.

Taiwan 2 Dominican Republic 1

When the Dominican Republic did not score in the top of the eighth after a failed bunt and a ground into double play, Taiwan took advantage. They successfully bunted to move the runners over. The Dominican Republic chose to intentionally walk the next hitter to load the bases, but another walk forced the winning run home to give Taiwan a 2-1 win. Yu-Ying Hsieh pitched all eight innings for Taiwan to get the win.

Canada 5 Venezuela 0

Amanda Asay pitched seven innings of one hit ball to lead Canada to victory. Veronica Boyd drove in the only run Asay needed with a double in the third. Kelsey Lalor drove in a run with a single in the fifth and Katherine Psota put the game away with a two run double in the sixth.

Women’s World Cup Super Round

Tuesday, August 28th, 2018

Taiwan upset the United States in pool play and advance to the Super Round undefeated. The one loss they had in pool play was erased because that team did not qualify for the Super Round. This leaves Taiwan and Japan as the only two undefeated teams in the Super Round.

The United States and Canada are tied for second at 1-1, while the Dominican Republic and Venezuela bring up the rear at 0-2.

In the opening Super Round games Taiwan plays Dominican Republic, Canada plays Venezuela and the United States has an opening draw against the favorites Japan. A loss to Japan would knock them out of any gold medal consideration.