U18 European Championship: Kingdom of the Netherlands Recovers From Loss vs Italy

After the loss vs Italy on Wednesday night, there was need for a quick recovery. That recovery came in today’s game vs France in which the Dutch beat Les Bleus 11-7.

U-18 European Baseball Championship 2021

An eight-run third inning made the difference today. The French team managed to score seven runs in total. You may say “A lot of runs for such a small baseball country,” but unlike in the Netherlands, baseball is still a growing sport in France. So that may explain the seven runs they scored.

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In the first inning, the French took a 1-0 lead when Joseph Toubeaux drew a walk and advanced to second on a wild pitch. He scored from second base on a fielding error by the Dutch second baseman.

But the Dutch bounced back in the second inning. Three consecutive singles and a sacrifice bunt drove in the game-tying run, followed by a single up the middle, hit by Raidley Legito, that allowed Mart Blijleven and Matis Crouwel to score. But France countered with two runs in the bottom of the second. A single up the middle drove in the second French run before Ethan Kekenbosch scored on a stolen home plate.

Then in the third, the Dutch had this monster inning. French pitcher Arthur Bidaut recorded a quick out but then things went quickly downward for the French. An HBP, a walk, a double, a single and another double, led to four runs. That was the moment in which Bidaut was relieved. Then a wild pitch, a single, an error, and another single led to four more runs.

Eventually it was good the Dutch had this inning, otherwise they might have lost again as the French score four more runs in the fourth frame.

In the remainder of the game, neither team did score again.

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Winning pitcher for the Netherlands was Mathijs Oosterbeek. He lasted four innings in which he gave up seven runs (six earned) on seven hits and a walk and struck out five. Koen van ‘t Klooster pitched the final three innings for the save. He gave up two hits, walked one and struck out one. Arthur Bidaut took the loss. In 2.1 innings he allowed eight runs on seven hits and two walks and struck out one.

Jesse Velders was the best hitter for team Kingdom of the Netherlands. He went 3 for 4 with a double, an RBI and a run scored.

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