Taiwan were no match for Cuba in the bronze-medal game of this year’s 18U Baseball World Cup, losing 6-1 at the Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium yesterday to finish fourth overall.
Three runs off a wild Chiang Chen-yen in the opening frame immediately gave the Cubans a lead that chased the Taiwanese starter just two outs into the bottom of the first.
Although replacement Lin Tzu-wei kept things close over the next two innings to give the Taiwanese offense a chance to plate a run in the top of the second, the damage was done. Cuba tacked on a run off Lin in the bottom of the second on an RBI single by Orlando Roas and added two more in the fourth.
Cuba starter Ruben Hernandez held the home team to a lone run on three hits over 2-2/3 innings of play before reliever Vladimir Gutierrez followed with 6-1/3 of scoreless innings of one-hit ball to shut down the Taiwanese offense.
Four different hitters had multi-hit games for Cuba, led by Luis Robert’s 2-for-4 effort with an RBI, while Peng Ming-yu’s pinch-hit triple was the lone highlight for an anemic Taiwanese attack that mustered just four hits on the day.
Gutierrez was credited with the win for his outstanding work.
Venezuela 1, South Korea 6
In the battle for fifth place, South Korea easily handled Venezuela yesterday afternoon.
The Asians took a 5-0 shutout two outs into the seventh before reliever Hwang Young-kuk gave up a bases-loaded walk to Nelson Torres.
Picking up the win for South Korea was starter Park Se-woong, who allowed a run on three hits over 6-1/3 innings.
Japan 2, USA 3
The US came back from a run down and held off a late-game rally by Japan to earn a 3-2 win and gold in this year’s competition.
It was the second straight win over Japan for the Americans, following Saturday night’s 10-4 blowout in the final game of the second round.