Team USA Finishes Summer with Tie, Loss Against Japan
OMAHA, NE - The USA Baseball Collegiate National Team's 2011 summer slate came to an end Friday at TD Ameritrade Park, with the club going 0-1-1 on the day.
The teams tied, 1-1, in a 10-inning affair in the first game, then Team USA dropped a 6-2 decision in the second game. The two games puts USA's final record at 11-2-1, while Japan tallied a 1-3-1 mark.
DJ Baxendale of Arkansas was saddled with the loss in game two to finish the summer with a 0-1 record in three starts. He allowed five runs, all of which were unearned as Team USA committed four errors during his five innings on the mound.
Brian Johnson of Florida highlighted Team USA's offense in game two with a solo home run in the ninth. It was his third home run with the club but came too late in the four-run loss.
Deven Marrero of Arizona State drove in the club's other run, in the sixth, on a single through the right side of the infield.
Japan took a 1-0 lead in the third then jumped out to a five-run lead with a four-run fifth, which was highlighted by a two-run home run off the bat of Yoshihiro Ikeda.
Tajahiro Fujioka picked up the win in two innings of relief for Japan. Daichi Osera started but did not go the required five innings, instead lasting just two, to give Fujioka, the first reliever out of the pen, the victory.
Game 1 Recap
The first game of the day saw the clubs play to a 1-1 tie after resuming play in the bottom of the third. The game originally started Wednesday but was delayed to Friday after rain deluged the Kannapolis, North Carolina area.
Daichi Suzuki put Japan up, 1-0, on a single to left in the fourth but Nolan Fontana of Florida, batting in the leadoff spot for Team USA, drove a sacrifice fly to right in the top of the eighth to tie the game.
Brady Rodgers of Arizona State started for Team USA and worked six innings, allowing three hits and an unearned run. He struck out two.
Branden Kline of Virginia, Hoby Milner of Texas and Marcus Stroman of Duke combined to throw four innings of scoreless relief, allowing just one hit with three strikeouts.
Nao Higashihama started for Japan and threw six innings, scattering five hits with seven strikeouts.
Josh Elander of Texas Christian and Matt Reynolds of Arkansas both finished with two hits while Japan's Ryosuke Obuta tallied two as well.
The game was halted after 10 innings to allow the originally scheduled game to start on time. Each team used the IBAF tiebreaker rule in the 10th - runners placed on first and second to start the inning - but each stranded what would have been the winning run on base.