U-18 Championships: USA into Semis

The USA finished pool play 6-0 and are into the semis of the U-18 tournament being held in Venezuela.

The Semifinals are today: USA v Panama (who they destroyed 14-0 in pool play).  The other semi-final will be Cuba v Venezuela.

1st and 3rd place games tomorrow.  I’ll summarize the tourney once the championship game has been played in a final post with final stats for our guys.

Bryce Harper has really not looked very good at the plate in this tournament.  The team stats through pool play show that Castellanos and Machado are really the hitters driving this team.

Games 4-6 in pool play summaries are below:

Game 4: USA d Columbia 19-0 (box/gamer)in a mercifully shortened 7-innings.  Harper highlights: caught, batted 3rd, 1-5 with a homer and 3 runs scored.  Every USA position player had a hit in the onslaught.

Game 5: USA d Cuba 9-5 (box/gamer).  The USA finally played some tough opposition in this tourney and had to use a 6-run eighth inning to overcome Cuba.  Harper highlights: playing Catcher, went 0-5 with a run and an rbi.  It was a slopppy game; USA only had 5 hits and none of our big hitters really contributed to the win.

Game 6: USA d host Venezuela 6-3 (box/gamer).  Harper: 1-3 with a walk, playing CF and was replaced in the lineup later in the game.  Manny Machado was the star of this game, hitting his 2nd HR and reaching base 4 times.

  1. #1 by Sec 204 Row H Seat 7 - October 2nd, 2009 at 16:05

    It seems to me that Harp is 50-50 to “regress” in Junior College. He may not be the sure lock for number 1 in the 2010 draft that he is made out to be.

  2. #2 by Mark - October 2nd, 2009 at 16:35

    He’s only sixteen – he could still play next year and blow everyone away. Plus five or six games in international competition does not prove much. I don’t know who Machado is…. anyone?

  3. #3 by estuartj - October 2nd, 2009 at 20:03

    This is Harpers first tournament with wood bats and that will require some adjustment, but more than anything a handful of games is nothing to get too worked up about and certainly not enough to diminish the potential that has pushed him to the top of everyone’s draft projections.

  4. #4 by estuartj - October 2nd, 2009 at 20:21

    Just to prove myself correct, this is Harper’s line today vs Panama (and 18-2 6 inning mercy rule slaughter);

    3 for 3 with 3 runs scored 5 rbis a double, HR and 2 walks.

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