USA are the team to beat in the 2017 U-12 Baseball World Cup and they make it pretty clear with an impressive 27-6 win over Korea, another baseball world power. Korea struggles with the pitching and the americans take full advantage of it, displaying power and an agressive running game.
Korea starter Jang Jeongu has his struggles with control and after he walks 3 in one inning plus one batter (Olivera, to open the second), manager Kim Junghan gives the ball to Ji Seungwon. It doesn’t prove a good move. Olivera steals second and gets to third on right fielder Egan base hit blooper to right. USA players find it easy to run on catcher’s Lee Kang arm and also Egan steals second. Then Ji walks third baseman Arambula to load the bases and second baseman Abel to force the first run of the game. Shortstop Caranto triples to the gap in right center to clear the bases and put USA ahead 4-0. It’s not all: catcher Atomanczyk fires a rocket to center field for a 2 run homer that extends the lead to 6-0 and sends Ji to the showers. So Changhyun is a new pitcher with already seen control issues. His game is over when Olivera homers to right in his second at bat of the frame. Yung Juchan walks to the rubber in an attempt to stop the bleeding. At the end of the first half of the second inning the score is 10-0.
Korea has no intention of giving up. In the bottom of the second they load the bases against starter Henry Benny on base hits by left fielder Lee Jinjung, first baseman Woo Jeonggyu and pitcher Jung Yuchan. Shortstop Kim Jiwook singles in 2 runs to cut the lead.
They still fight back after USA scores 5 in the top of the third and force a change, with Butt taking over for Benny. The newcomer puts himself into trouble with a hit batsman and a walk. At the end of the frame, the gap sticks to 10 runs, since Korea scores 3.
The defending champions are not done with homers. Left fielder Burns goes deep to left for 2 runs in the top of the fourth against Yook Sunyeop, the sixth pitcher sent to the mound by Korea. Left hander Jang Seongmu moves from right field to become the seventh with one out and the bases loaded in the fourth. He can’t stop USA from extending the lead to 27-5.
In the bottom half of the inning Korea manage to score one more run but have anyway to surrender to the tournament’s mercy rule.