United States Wins College Opener Against Japan

The United States national team has scheduled two international exhibition series.  The first is a series against a college all star team from Japan that will be played in Japan.  The second is a series against Cuban players from the National Series professional league that will be played in the United States.

The United States won their opener against Japan 6-3.  Japan took the early lead after a 2-out RBI single in the first inning by Ryutaro Umeno made it 1-0.  Daichi Osera made that lead stick through the first five, striking out five in the first two innings.  The United States thought they had a run in the second inning after a bases loaded two out pitch hit Austin Cousino.  The Japanese umpire felt Cousino did not make an attempt to get out of the way of the pitch and ruled it a strike.

The United States team finally got to Osera in the sixth with three consecutive hits to tie the game at 1-1.  Matt Chapman stroked the game tying hit.  The Japanese bullpen could not put out the fire.  Reliever Masaji Rokumo committed a throwing error on a sacrifice bunt that allowed two runners to score.  Grayson Greiner topped an infield single to score the fourth run of the inning.  The United States would not relinquish the lead.

Alex Bregman contributes an RBI single in the eighth with a second run scoring after an error by the Japanese left fielder.  This made the score 6-2.  Ryan Burr was impressive in the ninth inning.  After walking the leadoff hitter he struck out the last three Japanese hitters to pick up the save.

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