In the second semi-final, the USA took on Mexico. It was a miracle itself that Mexico got this far. The Mexican baseball federation had a feud with the several Mexican winter leagues, who did not want to lend their players. For a long time it looked like that Panama would take the place of the Mexicans but in the very last moment the Mexican baseball federation came up with a team of players from the USA with Mexican ancestors.
Where Mexico ended in the fourth spot of group B, they had to face the winner of group A, Canada in the quarter finals. Totally unexpected, the Mexicans won by beating Canada 4-3.
In the semis, Mexico faced its northern neighbour. In the first three innings the teams did not score, but in the top of the fourth inning, Mexico took a 1-0 lead over the USA when catcher Humberto Sosa hit a solo shot that cleared the left center field wall. For half an inning the Mexicans could hope for a good ending but in the bottom of the same inning, USA bounced back.
With one out Matt McBride hit a single through the left side of the infield, followed by a double down the right field line, hit by Dan Black. But McBride was too eager in trying to get to home plate and was tagged out near homeplate after an 9-4-2-5. With only one out to go to get out of the inning, Mexican starter Mark Serrano could not get out of the inning. He gave up the game tying hit to Adam Frazier, who drove in Dan Black and a walk to Tyler Pastornicky, which signaled the end of his appearance in this game. Gerardo Sanchez took over but didn’t get out of the inning before he had given up a double to Dan Rohlfing and singles to Tyler Pastornicky and Elliott Soto and Jacob May that drove in four more runs for the Americans.
One inning later the USA scored one more to reach the final score of 6-1.
Zeke Spruill earned the win after five innings in which he gave up one run on four hits. He gave up two walks and struck out three.
Best hitter for the USA was Adam Frazier, who went 3 for 4 with an RBI and a run scored.
It is not that the USA out hit Mexico; Mexico collected seven hits and the USA nine, but the Americans were much more effective than their neighbours.
The USA will meet South Korea in the final on Sunday in the Tokyo Dome.
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