Blue squad edges Red 4-2 in second content of Junior National Team Trials
JNT Trials team to meet Team Premier Aug. 17 to begin three-game exhibition series
August 16, 2007
Box Score | Scoreboard/Results
JOPLIN, Mo. - With Harold Martinez (INF; Miami, FL), Eric Hosmer (INF; Cooper City, FL) and Riccio Torrez (INF; Phoenix, AZ) registering two hits each, the Blue squad overcame an early deficit to post a 4-2 win against the Red in an intrasquad contest at the USA Baseball Junior National Team Trials Aug. 16 at Joe Becker Stadium.
The game was the second contest between the two teams at the Trials, which continues through Aug. 19. The 33 players who comprise the Red and Blue squads will now join forces as the JNT Trials team for a three-game exhibition series. The series begins Aug. 17 when the Trials squad meets Team Premier. That matchup will be followed by a game against the Chinese Taipei Junior National Team Aug. 18 and a contest against Canada's Junior National Team Aug. 19. All three games will start at 7 p.m. (Central time) at Joe Becker Stadium.
In the Blue-Red contest, the Red squad jumped to a 1-0 lead in the second inning only to see the Blue team rally to score three straight runs to take control of the nine-inning contest. Neither team scored in the final four innings.
The Red grabbed its early advantage when Robbie Grossman (OF; Cypress, TX) laced a leadoff triple to center field in the second inning and then scored on a wild pitch.
But the Blue squad answered with two runs in the home half of the inning to take the lead for good. After Preston Tucker (OF; Tampa, FL) drew a leadoff walk, Hosmer's first of two doubles moved Tucker to third base. Tucker tallied on an infield single by Torrez with Hosmer taking third. Hosmer scored on a sacrifice fly by Kaleb Merck (INF; Keller, TX).
Team Blue made it 3-1 an inning later. Martinez legged out an infield single to plate Garrison Lassiter (INF; High Point, NC) who started the frame with an infield single and had moved to third base on an error and a groundout. The Blue squad tallied its final run in the fifth inning on Tucker's RBI grounder, which knocked in Lassiter.
The Red squad's other run came in the fourth inning when Kyle Buchanan (INF; Auburn, WA) and Tyler Hibbs (INF; Odenton, MD) notched back-to-back doubles.
Five hurlers saw action on the mound for each team. Red pitchers allowed eight hits while issuing four walks and striking out eight. Meanwhile, the Blue staff permitted seven hits, issued eight walks and fanned 11.
Following the evaluation of players during the Trials, a final 20-player Junior National Team roster will be selected Aug. 19. On Aug. 23, the team will depart for Ixtapa, Mexico, where the JNT will compete in the Confederation of Pan American Baseball Federations "AAA" Pan Am Junior Championships Aug. 24-Sept. 2. The Junior National Team competes in two major events in bi-yearly cycles - the COPABE Pan Am Championships and the International BAseball Federation World Championships. The Pan Am Championships serve as a qualifier for the ensuing year's World Championships.
The USA Baseball Junior National Team is a perennial power on the international baseball scene. Only once in the 22-year history of the IBAF World Junior Championships has the United States failed to capture a medal. During this time, the JNT has earned five gold medals, 10 silver medals and six bronze medals.