TEAM USA IMPROVES TO 5-0 BEATING ARUBA 17-0

August 9, 2006

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  • BARQUISIMETO, Venezuela – Team USA crushed Aruba 17-0, in a 5-inning run-rule verdict (15 + run margin after 5 innings). Team USA scored 12 runs in the 3rd inning, highlighted by a Tyler Rahmatulla 3-run homer – he also singled in that fruitful frame. 17 batters came to the plate in the 3rd inning for Team USA, which remained the only unbeaten team in the tournament (5-0), as Aruba dropped to (1-4).

    Tyler Johnson (Trussville, AL) pitched a one-hit shut-out with eight strikeouts, earning the win. He lost his perfect game bid in that final 5th inning, allowing a lead-off single – the only Aruba batter to reach base.

    Ronnie Richardson reached base four times, scored four, and drove in three. Jaff Decker had three singles in the win.

    On the first two pitches of the game, L.J. Hoes (Mitchelville, MD) and Tyler Rahmatulla (Mission Viejo, CA) were hit by Aruba’s starter Amiel Gibbs. Hoes was thrown out at third base on the front end of a double-steal. Jaff Decker (Phoenix, AZ) blooped a single into left giving Team USA two runners again. Harold Martinez (Miami, FL) followed with a walk, loading the bases for Kyle Skipworth (Riverside, CA). Skipworth christened the scoring with a walk, bringing home Rahmatulla for a 1-0 lead. Mac Williamson (Wake Forest, NC) struck out swinging for the second out, and Mychal Givens (Tampa, FL) flied to left to leave the bases loaded.

    In the home 1st inning, Aruba was silenced by Tyler Johnson, striking out twice in a 1,2,3 inning.

    The 2nd inning began like the 1st, with Aruba’s Gibbs hitting the lead-off batter, Ronnie Richardson (Eagle Lake, FL), who stole second base three pitches later. Tyler Johnson walked on four pitches, and the first time through the order, Team USA was hit three times, walked that same number, with a single in the mix. L.J. Hoes reached on a fielding error by the shortstop, which allowed Richardson to score from second for a 2-0 advantage. After Tyler Rahmatulla flied to center, Jaff Decker flied to right, with Johnson tagging to third with two outs. A Gibbs wild pitch scored Johnson, producing a 3-0 lead. Harold Martinez struck out swinging to end the inning.

    The bottom of the 2nd resembled the 1st, a perfect inning pitched by Johnson, with a pair of strikeouts.

    In the 3rd inning, Mac Richardson was hit with one out, marking the fourth Team USA batter that was hit by a Gibbs pitch. Mychal Givens followed with a walk, advancing Williamson to second. Aruba’s Gibbs had issued four walks and hit four batters in 2.1 innings up to that point. Ronnie Richardson drilled a fastball high off the centerfield fence, scoring Williamson and Givens, and boosting the lead to 5-0. After Johnson reached on an error, L.J. Hoes banged an RBI double to right-center, scoring Richardson for a 6-0 Team USA lead. Gibbs was pulled in place of Derward Ruiz as Aruba’s pitcher. Tyler Rahmatulla greeted Ruiz with a blast over the left field fence; a 3-run homer, pumping the lead to 9-0. It was Rahmatulla’s 2nd homer of the tournament, leading the team. Jaff Decker laced a single up the middle, and took second on a wild pitch. Harold Martinez walked. Kyle Skipworth walked, filling the bases for Mac Williamson, who’s single up the middle nearly decapitated the pitcher, driving in Decker and Martinez for an 11-0 margin. Dimitri De La Fuente (West Covina, CA) entered for Givens, and chopped an RBI single to left, plating Skipworth for a 12-0 bulge. Ronnie Richardson’s single scored Williamson, and on the play the right-fielder’s error scored De La Fuente (14-0). Another error from Aruba, their fourth of the inning, scored Richardson for a 15-0 lead. Aruba committed eight errors during the morning game.

    In the bottom of the 3rd, Tyler Johnson maintained his perfect game, adding a fifth strikeout overall.

    Team USA didn’t score in the 4th – Harold Martinez reached on a fielding error by the third baseman. Kyle Skipworth bounced into a double-play (3-6-3). Mac Williamson reached on Aruba’s seventh error of the game, a fly ball mishandled by the right fielder. Dimitri De La Fuente struck out swinging to conclude the inning. It remained 15-0.

    Tyler Johnson eased through the 4th inning, with two more strikeouts, remaining perfect.

    For the 4th time in Team USA’s 5 games, the starter has taken a no-hitter into the 5th.

    In the 5th Team USA scored two more runs. Left-hander Randy Young walked Ronnie Richardson to lead-off the frame. Tyler Johnson popped out. L.J. Hoes singled to right, advancing Richardson to second. Tyler Rahmatulla reached second on a fielder’s choice grounder/error, with the shortstop’s throw wide of first, Richardson was able to score, and Rahmatulla took second. That made it 16-0. Jaff Decker’s RBI single to right drove in Rahmatulla, for the 17th run.

    In the home 5th, Johnson’s perfect game was broken on a leadoff single by pinch-hitter Kelvin Sylvania, who was stranded at second to end the game after five innings.

    Head Coach Garye LaFevers remarked on the carnage – "we got our focus back…we got our approach back. We took big steps in a positive way, to eliminate the game with Mexico. Yesterday we played well enough to win, but we didn’t play real smart – today we showed that we are a very good team, because we took steps to correct the tempo that we played at yesterday. Rahmatulla had another big day, Ronnie Richardson was a big contributor, and Tyler Johnson set the tone on the mound. To lose a perfect game on the first pitch of the 5th inning, could be disappointing and cause you to lose your focus. Tyler made one bad pitch, and went ahead and got the next three batters."

    Team USA will play Colombia at 10am on August 10th, in its sixth game.

    Team USA……………...12(12)02
    Team ARUBA……….....00000

    WP: Johnson (1-0); LP: Gibbs (0-1)

    STANDINGS:
    USA 5-0
    MEXICO 3-1
    VENEZUELA 3-2
    DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 2-2
    CUBA 2-2
    COLOMBIA 1-3
    ARUBA 1-4
    BRAZIL 1-3