Game Notes: The 2007 IBAF World Cup
Team USA shuts out Panama, 7-0
Nov. 8, 2007 at Intercontinential (Taichung, Taiwan)

Box Score »


Game Date WP LP SV
USA 3 - MEX 0 11/7/07 Karstens (1-0) Rodriguez (0-1) Booker (1)
USA 7 - PAN 0 11/8/07 Wright (1-0) Pinto (0-1) None

Game One Wednesday, November 7 6:00 p.m. Mexico (Intercontinental)
Game Two Thursday, November 8 12:00 p.m. Panama (Intercontinental)
Game Three Friday, November 9 12:00 p.m. Italy (Taichung)
Game Four Saturday, November 10 6:00 p.m. Japan (Intercontinental)
Game Five Sunday, November 11 6:00 p.m. Spain (Taichung)
Off-Day Monday, November 12
Game Six Tuesday, November 13 12:00 p.m. South Africa (Taichung)
Game Seven Wednesday, November 14 6:00 p.m. Chinese Taipei (Intercontinental)
Off-Day Thursday, November 15
Quarter-Finals* Friday, November 16 TBD
Semi-Finals* Saturday, November 17 TBD
Finals* Sunday, November 18 TBD
*If Necessary

In a gesture of goodwill Team USA and Team Panama exchanged gifts before the game. After pre-game introductions and both countries anthems, Team USA presented Panama with pins and in return Panama gave the US players flags. After that is was all business for Team USA and they jumped on Panama starter Elpidio Pinto for a run in the first and three in the second, chasing Pinto after just 1 2/3 innings. In the first, with two outs, Andy LaRoche singled, Delwyn Young walked and Evan Longoria ripped a single to center scoring LaRoche. In the second Tyler Colvin led off with a double then after two quick outs centerfielder Colby Rasmus knocked in Colvin with a single to center, Jayson Nix was hit by a pitch and LaRoche ripped a double to right scoring Rasmus and Nix to make it 4-0 USA. The score remained the same until the bottom of the sixth when after singles by shortstop Michael Hollimon and second baseman Jayson Nix Andy LaRoche once again provide the power by doubling off the centerfield wall, scoring both runners and making it 6-0.

In the seventh, DH Evan Longoria hit Team USA's first home run of the tournament, when he connected on a 2-2 pitch off Panama reliever Ramon Ramirez to push the lead to 7-0.

Starter Matt Wright was great, scattering three hits over six scoreless innings while striking out five and walking none. Relievers Steven Shell, Chris Perez and Jeff Stevens each pitch a scoreless inning apiece to nail down the win for Wright (1-0) and push the USA to 2-0 and still un-scored on in the World Cup.

Andy LaRoche went 3-4 with 4 RBI and a run scored. Evan Longoria was 2-3 with a HR, 2 RBI, 1 Run scored and a walk. Team USA pitchers have combined for 18 straight scoreless innings so far in the IBAF World Cup. The U.S. plays Italy tomorrow at noon (local time) at Taichung Stadium.

Australia took a 2-1 lead into the bottom of the ninth against nine-time defending champion Cuba yesterday and with two outs and two strikes on Cuban leftfielder Frederich Cepeda he crushed a game tying homer off Australian reliever Thomas Brad. Then Cuban DH Osmani Urrutia sent everyone home with a game ending walk-off in the bottom of the 10th.

Five of the seven games played during day one of World Cup play all ended in shutouts. USA blanked Mexico 3-0; Panama and Korea both beat Spain and Canada 5-0; Venezuela scored seven runs in their final three innings to shutout Germany 8-0 and Netherlands crushed Thailand 16-0 in a seven inning game that was called due to the 10-run rule.

A 9:00 a.m. bus ride from the Howard Prince Hotel for their noon game against Panama turned into a hilarious impromptu Karaoke session for Team USA. When the players boarded, the bus television was playing Karaoke with Chinese music and English lyrics across the screen. Several players belted out their versions of the songs as coaches and staff laughed hysterically during the fifteen minute trip to Intercontinental Stadium.