TEAM USA WINS OPENING GAME VS. BRAZIL, 12-0

August 5, 2006

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  • BARQUISIMETO, Venezuela - The 2006 Youth National Team opened its COPABE PAN-AMERICAN Championship play, with a convincing 12-0 win over Brazil, in a game stopped in the middle of the seventh inning due to the scoring margin – a lead of at least 10 runs after seven innings.

    Kyle Winkler dominated Team Brazil’s hitters en-route to the win (6 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 1 BB, 8 K), and offensively for Team USA, L.J Hoes (4 RBI) and Jaff Decker (3 RBI) each homered. There were three different innings when Team USA scored 4 runs and batted around – the second, fourth and sixth innings, accounting for all 12 of its runs.

    Team USA starting pitcher Kyle Winkler (Sugar Land, TX) earned the win, and had his no-hitter broken up in the fifth inning, on a one-out single by Fernando Tanaka (he took second on a Hoes fielding error on the play). Winkler didn’t allow a Brazilian batter to reach until there were two outs in the third inning (first eight batters were retired), when he allowed a walk, having struck out four straight batters spanning the second and third innings prior to that walk.

    Team USA christened the scoring with a four-run second inning in which they batted around. Tyler Rahmatulla (Mission Viejo, CA) had an RBI double inside third-base, scoring Max Stassi (Yuba City, CA) who was hit by a pitch and had taken second on a wild pitch by starter Augusto Sano. Following a Mychal Givens (Tampa, FL) single to center, which advanced Rahmatulla to third, Kyle Winkler hit a sacrifice fly to left, scoring Rahmatulla, pushing the lead to 2-0. Leadoff hitter, L.J. Hoes (Mitchelville, MD) homered to left, a two-run shot, making it 4-0. Jaff Decker (Phoenix, AZ) and Harold Martinez (Miami, FL) followed with singles, but were stranded to end the second.

    The fourth inning mirrored the fruitful second, as Team USA scored four runs and batted around again. Mychal Givens and Kyle Winkler collected back-to-back singles chasing Team Brazil starter Sano. Reliever Espildora issued a wild pitch to L.J. Hoes, advancing the runners, and two pitches later, Hoes singled in both Givens and Winkler, making it 6-0. Jaff Decker followed with an opposite field two-run homer to left-center, extending the lead to 8-0. The first five batters reached base in the fourth.

    The sixth inning was eerily similar to the second and fourth innings, as the team batted around, scoring four runs. Kyle Skipworth’s triple to left scored Max Stassi (who reached on an error). Skipworth scored on a Tyler Rahmatulla single up the middle, boosting the lead to 10-0. Pinch-hitter Mac Williamson (Wake Forest, NC) singled over the left-fielder’s head scoring Rahmatulla, pushing the margin to 11-0. Jaff Decker reached for a fourth straight appearance, on an RBI single to left scoring Givens, and ultimately ending the scoring at 12-0. Tyler Johnson (Trussville, AL) pitched a clean seventh, with two strikeouts to wrap it up.

    Team USA pitching coach Gary Hatch spoke glowingly about starter Kyle Winkler’s performance – "his breaking ball was working, and he commanded the inside which allowed him to get that (the outside). Kids were flailing at some pitches."

    Head coach Garye LeFevers remarked, "he (Winkler) was ahead of batters, he worked ahead in the count, he threw all four pitches for strikes…a good opening day performance. Offensively, we made adjustments to each pitcher. We’re not accustomed to seeing that international style of pitching (off speed)."

    Team USA will play Venezuela at 7pm on August 6th in its second game.

    Team Brazil……….0000000
    Team USA………...040404

    WP: Kyle Winkler (1-0)
    LP: Augusto Sano (0-1)

    STANDINGS
    USA 1-0
    MEXICO 1-0
    VENEZUELA 1-0
    ARUBA 0-1
    BRAZIL 0-1
    CUBA 0-0
    COLOMBIA 0-0
    DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 0-0