The Australians finish the tournament in 7th, defeating the Czechs 2-1. In a tight finish, to what looked like a runaway game, the United States retained the lead to beat Venezuela 5-4. Canada overpowered the defending champions to take 3rd place in the 2019 Men’s Softball World Championship by a score of 2-1. What a show! The 2019 Men’s Softball World Championship came to a close in 10 with Argentina ahead 3-2.
Czech Republic x Australia 1:2 (0:0, 0:1, 1:0, 0:0, 0:1, 0:0, 0:X)
Marek Joska threw 4.0 innings for the Czech Republic giving up 1 earned run off as many hits.
The first run of the game for Australia was unearned as Callum Beashel took his first two bases on an error by shortstop Tomas Petr. The next batter, Brendon O’Bryne would also reach on an inconsequential error by first baseman Matous Kasal. Both men advanced on the bags with a sacrifice by Nicholas Norton that drove Beashel home.
For Australia Andrew Kirkpatrick threw 6.0 innings giving up just 1 run off 3 hits while striking out 8.
In the top of the 3rd Vaclav Svoboda hit a triple to reach before being driven in on a single by David Mertl.
In the 5th Joshua White hit a 2-strike homerun deep to left giving Australia the go-ahead run, and the win.
Venezuela vs United states (0:2, 0:0, 0:0, 0:0, 0:3, 4:0, 0:X)
The USA posted 2 up in the 1st and another 3 in the 5th. That put them ahead 5-0 going into the 6th. In the half inning Venezuela put 4 on the board and we had ourselves a ball game! These are the types of games you hope for in tournament play… as long as you’re not on a team bench.
Matt Palazzo started things off with a 2-run dinger that brought around Erick Ochoa, who had just been walked. In the 5th Ochoa paid it forward sending one over the fence to bring in 2 more. Those two earned their way across the plate, each haven taken a ball to the body to reach.
The bats finally came to life for Venezuela in the 6th. Rafael Flores and Jorge Lima were walked by the States’ new pitcher, Joel Cooley, before Engelbert Herrara reached on a fielder’s choice. Flores was thrown out on the play. John Zambrano hit one over, to bring them both around. Just like that Venezuela was on the board with 3. Rogelio Sequera got on with a single. Carlos Carreno doubled to score him and Cooley’s day was done. That was also the end of the rally for Venezuela.
New Zealand vs Canda 2:1 (0:0, 0:0, 0:0, 1:1, 0:1, 0:0, 0:X)
Patrick Burns pitched the complete game for the Cunucks giving up 1 run off 3 hits while striking out 12. That run was a solo shot by Kiwi Reilly Makea to start the 4th.
The Canadians responded in the bottom of the inning with a one of their own. Stephen Mullaley hit a 2-out triple down the left side with Mathieu Roy on at 1st to tie things up.
In the next inning, the Canadians were busy playing it one hit at a time. Jeffery Ellsworth singled up the middle then stole 2nd. When Bradley Ezekiel singled to left, he scored the go-ahead run.
Argentina vs Japan 3:2 (0:0, 0:0, 0:2, 0:0, 1:0, 1:0, 0:0, 0:0, 0:0, 1:0)
In 146 pitches Huemul Mata pitched a complete game for the Argentines through 3 extra innings. He gave up 1 earned run off 4 hits, walked 6 and struck out 17.
For Japan, the pen work was evenly divided between Hikaru Matsuda and Reo Koyama. Neither pitcher walked a man through 10. Matsuda gave up 1 run off 5 hits, striking out 4. Koyama gave up the other earned run over 3 hits.
At the plate for Argentina tonight Mariano Montero was the only man with more than one hit. He had 2 runs off as many hits, including a double, and an RBI.
Japan’s bats were first to make contact. They put 2 on the board in the 3rd. Takuto Tsutsui singled and Seii Kuroiwa reached on an error. Ryoyu Une was walked next, to load them. Yusuke Morita walked and that scored Tsutsui. Kuroiwa then took advantage of a wild pitch and Japan was up 2-0 having done little more than remain patience at the plate.
Top of the 5th Argentina made their move. Mariano Montero doubled to left and Manuel Godoy drove him in with a single to the same side. To start the 6th, Juan Malarczuk tripled to right before Mariano Montero drove him in with a single up the middle to tie the game.
The score remained 2-2 through 9 innings of play. In the 10th, Montero started on 2nd for Argentina. Manuel Godoy singled to left and Montero scored on an error by leftfielder Yusuke Morita.
In the bottom of the inning with 136 pitches behind him, Japan’s biggest game changer of the tournament, Hikaru Matsuda stepped up to the plate. Huemul Mata took him down with 3 pitches for the second out of the inning. 5 more pitches and the Argentines were World Champions.