August 11, 2006

  • Box Score   |  Scoreboard/Results
  • BARQUISIMETO, Venezuela – Team USA hammered the Dominican Republic 17-1, in a 5-inning run-rule enforced game (15 + run margin after 5 innings), stampeding into this weekend’s medal-play with the #1 seed and an undefeated record (7-0). Team USA erupted for 14 1st inning runs – a Team USA record, featuring homers from Tyler Rahmatulla (2-run HR), D.J. Hicks (3-run HR), and Kyle Skipworth (grand slam). The first 12 batters scored in the 1st inning, as the team batted around twice. Hicks added his second homer in the 3rd inning (solo HR). Skipworth finished (4-4, HR, 6 RBI).

    Jaff Decker (Phoenix, AZ) was the starting and winning pitcher for Team USA on a partly cloudy morning with the wind blowing out toward left.

    In the top of the 1st inning the left-hander walked the second batter Luigui Jaque, but Decker picked him off to end the inning.

    Team USA took immediate command of the game, with 14 1st inning runs. The Dominican Republic started right-hander Franci Perez. L.J. Hoes (Mitchelville, MD) walked to begin the game. Dominican head coach Francisco De La Cruz was ejected by the home plate umpire for arguing about the balls called in the at-bat. Tyler Rahmatulla (Mission Viejo, CA) christened the scoring with a 2-run home run to left, for a 2-0 Team USA lead. It was Rahmatulla’s tournament leading 3rd homer. Jaff Decker was hit by the next pitch. Harold Martinez (Miami, FL) followed with a walk. With two on and no outs, Kyle Skipworth (Riverside, CA) lashed an RBI single to right-center, scoring Decker for a 3-0 lead. Dominican starter Rodriguez, was taken out after allowing the first five batters to reach. Lefty Ambioryx Tavares replaced him. Max Stassi (Yuba City, CA) popped a single to short right, as the wind played havoc with the ball, which allowed Martinez to score for a 4-0 advantage. D.J. Hicks (Altamonte Springs, FL) then pumped the score up to 7-0 with a 3-run homer to right. Mychal Givens (Tampa, FL) walked on four pitches, bringing up Ronnie Richardson (Eagle Lake, FL) the 9th place hitter, and there were still no outs. L.J. Hoes walked, loading the bases for Tyler Rahmatulla, who had already homered in the inning. The Dominican Republic made another pitching change, bringing in Aneudys Merejos, a right-hander. Rahmatulla was hit by a breaking ball, scoring Givens for an 8-0 lead. Jaff Decker lined a single to center, scoring Richardson for a 9-0 lead. Harold Martinez struck out swinging; the first out of the inning after the opening 12 batters reached – and would all score. Kyle Skipworth then ripped a grand slam homer to right, increasing the lead to 13-0. Team USA’s third homer of the inning. Max Stassi grounded out. D.J. Hicks walked, was balked over to second, and scored on a Mychal Givens line drive single to right, for a 14-0 margin. The fourth Dominican pitcher hit the mound in the inning – Joel Estrella, a righty, who struck out Ronnie Richardson to mercifully end the 14-run 1st inning – a Team USA record.

    Jaff Decker worked a perfect 2nd inning, with a strikeout.

    In the bottom of the 2nd, Team USA added 1 run, for a 15-0 lead. L.J. Hoes popped out to first. Tyler Rahmatulla struck out swinging on a high fastball. Jaff Decker smashed a liner past the second baseman that reached the fence for a double. Harold Martinez grounded a single off the pitcher, sending Decker to third base. Kyle Skipworth, having hit a grand slam in his previous at-bat (and was the only player with two hits in that fruitful 1st inning), smacked a double to center, driving in Decker for a 15-0 lead. Max Stassi struck out on a high fast ball to conclude the 2nd.

    Brock Duke (Salem, UT) started the 3rd inning on the mound for Team USA, and worked a perfect frame with a pair of strikeouts.

    In the home 3rd, Team USA struck for two more runs. D.J. Hicks opened with his second homer of the morning; an opposite field fly that cleared the fence. Team USA increased the lead to 16-0. Dimitri De La Fuente (West Covina, CA) batted for Givens, and doubled down the third base line. Brock Duke struck out swinging. L.J. Hoes grounded out to shortstop, sending De La Fuente to third base. Tyler Rahmatulla’s grounder was mishandled by the shortstop for an error, scoring De La Fuente, making it 17-0. Jaff Decker singled to left-center, pushing Rahmatulla to third base. Tyler Johnson entered the game, and struck out swinging, ending the inning.

    Matt Purke entered the game in the 4th, as Team USA’s pitcher. Santiago led off with a bloop single to center. Santiago took second on defensive indifference. Jaque grounded out to short, advancing Santiago to third base. A Purke wild pitch allowed Santiago to score the 1st run of the game for the Dominican Republic. Purke retired the next two batters to end the inning at 17-1.

    Lefty Eury De La Rosa pitched the 4th for the Dominican Republic. Kyle Skipworth earned his second consecutive 4-hit game, with a bloop hit to left. Skipworth was picked off first base for the first out. Max Stassi struck out swinging on a high fastball for the second out. D.J. Hicks, having already homered twice, bounced out to shortstop to finish the inning.

    Alex Panteliodis (Tampa, FL) pitched the 5th for Team USA, working a perfect inning, and ending the game. A 17-1 Team USA victory over the Dominican Republic.

    Head Coach Garye LaFevers commented on his team’s overwhelming performance – "Rahmatulla continues to get the hit that ignites our offensive production. Today it came in the first inning. Anytime you can get out and score a couple in the first inning, you have to feel good, but sending 18 batters to the plate doesn’t happen too often. Skipworth has seen the ball very well. He’s on a streak (back-to-back 4 hit games). Hicks hit two homers today – one to left, one to right. He’s made adjustments to off-speed pitches. Between those three kids – that’s 13 RBI and 4 home runs (7 hits). Pitching-wise, we threw kids out there to get some work, and set-up the rotation for the weekend. I like our chances (heading into the weekend), but it’s going to be a battle, that’s why I’m already nervous."

    Team USA (#1 seed) will play the 4th seed (undetermined at this time) at 3pm on August 12th, in its first medal-play game.

    Team USA………................................(14)120

    WP: Decker (1-0); LP: Perez (0-1)

    USA 7-0
    MEXICO 5-2
    CUBA 4-2
    BRAZIL 2-5
    COLOMBIA 1-5
    ARUBA 1-6