Mexico Upsets Japan in Under 23 World Cup

Mexico pulled a big upset beating the previously undefeated and number two ranked team in the world Japan 2-1. They did it with eight innings of one hit pitching from starter Carlos Morales. The bullpen continued to leave Japan hitless through 10 innings. In the top of the tenth Mexico captured the lead with a two run single from Fabricio Macias.

Japan could only counter with one run in the bottom of the 10th. They chose to sacrifice to move the runners into scoring position. A ground out scored one run but that left Japan with only one out left. A walk put the winning run on base. Japan called on Sergio Alvarado to get the last out. He walked the only batter he faced to load the bases. Erick Casillas was asked to save the day. He got a fly out to right and the Mexican celebration began.

Hiroki Kondo pitched well for Japan, throwing eight innings of shutout ball. He gave up seven hits. Mexico strung together three consecutive singles off him in the second, but had a runner gunned down at home to end the inning with zero runs.

Macias had an opportunity to win the game in the seventh, an intentional walk putting two runners on with two out. He grounded out to shortstop to end the inning. Macias did not fail in his second opportunity grounding a single up the middle to drive in two.

Venezuela 5 Korea 4

Venezuela won the bronze medal game. They scored the go ahead run in the bottom of the eighth when Korea tried to turn two but failed, the runner from third scoring on the play.

Nivaldo Rodriguez threw five innings of one hit shutout ball before he departed after the fifth inning. The Venezuelans were leading 3-0 after his departure. In his eleven innings of work Rodriguez had yet to allow a run and had only given up three hits. The Koreans found the servings of the Venezuelan bullpen more to their liking, scoring four in the next two innings to tie the game.

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