Japan vs. Japan: U-18 National Team falls 4-1 to College National Team ahead of WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup

Japan vs. Japan: U-18 National Team falls 4-1 to College National Team ahead of WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup
01/09/2022
A solo home-run by clean-up hitter Yuta Utsumi in the fourth (pictured above) gave the U-18 Samurai Japan their only run.

The Japanese Collegiate National Team defeated the country's U-18 National Team, 4-1, in a preparation game for the U-18 Baseball World Cup at the ZOZO Marine Stadium in Chiba.

In the fourth, the U-18 National Team scored their only run on a solo homer by clean-up hitter Yuta Utsumi.

"It's great hitting home runs," commented manager Shiro Mabuchi, "what I expect from this team is the ability to manufacture runs. Today we couldn't get on base so we couldn't display our baseball."

U-18 starter Kazuki Kozai struggled with control in the first, then displayed his power and pitch repertoire.

Akiya Miyahara took over for Kozai in the fourth and the game was tied at one after five.

The collegiate Samurai Japan got to Tetsusei Morimoto in the sixth and opened up the score.

World No. 1 Japan will compete in group B in the U-18 World Cup, where they will face No. 2 and defending U-18 World Champions Chinese Taipei, No. 4 Mexico, No. 10 Australia, No. 13 Panama, and No. 17 Italy in the opening round.

The XXX WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup opens on Friday, 9 September, in Sarasota and Bradenton, Florida.

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