It was an amazing afternoon of baseball at MCU Park, as pitching dominated that matchup between Brazil and Israel, that many would consider a game for the ages.
Corey Baker got the start for Israel and threw an amazing 5 shutout innings, allowing just 1 hit. His lone inning of trouble came in the Top of the 4th, when he issued two walks of his three walks in the day, but got Bo Bichette to ground out to end the inning.
Israel got their lone run in the Bottom of the 4th. Nate Freiman led off with a double to left off Brazil starter Bo Takahashi. Ike Davis, the former Brooklyn Cyclone, grounded the ball to first baseman Dante Bichette Jr., who misplayed the ball and was charged with an error. With runners at the corners, Cody Decker hit a deep fly ball to center, which allowed Freiman to score, giving Israel a 1-0 lead over Brazil.
Jared Lakind, Jeremy Bleich and Ryan Sherriff combined to throw 3 shutout innings before closer Brad Goldberg threw a perfect 9th inning to earn his 2nd save and send Israel to the Championship Game on Sunday night.
In the night game, Pakistan was once again at the mercy of the blowout rules, as they failed to score a run for their second straight game and the entire tournament.
After a scoreless 1st, Great Britain took an early lead in the Top of the 2nd, as Chris Berset hit a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Albert Cartwright.
Kyle Simmons led off the Top of the 3rd with a walk from starter Muhammad Zohaib. With Champ Stuart up, Simmons swiped 2nd & took 3rd on a throwing error by catcher Umair Imdad Bhatti. Stuart, the Mets farmhand, drew a walk as well. Jasrado Chisholm singled to right, scoring Simmons and moving Stuart to 3rd. Todd Isaacs grounded into a double play, but scored Stuart to make it 3-0. Jordan Serena flew out to end the inning.
Great Britain added another in the Top of the 4th off reliever Asrar Ahmad, as Chavez Young singled in Cartwright.
Great Britain blew it wide open in the 5th inning. Chisholm led off with a single to center. Isaacs struck out, but Serena stole 2nd. A triple by Cartwright scored Serena to make it a 6-0 game. Berset drew a walk and Young singled, scoring Cartwright and moving Berset to 2nd. Muhammed Asif came in to pitch and issued a single to Reshard Munroe, scoring Berset, sending Young to 3rd with Munroe taking 2nd on the throw. Simmons walked and Stuart singled in Young to make it 9-0. Chisolm, who came up for the 2nd time in the inning, struck out for the 2nd out. Isaacs reached on an error, scoring Munroe. Serena struck out to end the inning.
Pakistan continued to issue runs in the 6th, as 0inch-hitter Richard Klijn (pronounced Klein) popped out, before Mitch Evans was hit by pitch. Young popped out for the 2nd out, but Munroe drew a walk, moving Evans to 2nd. Nateshon Thomas hit for Simmons and doubled to left, scoring Evans and moving Munroe to 3rd. Stuart reached on an infield hit, scoring Munroe and Thomas. Chisholm struck out to end the inning with a 13-0 lead.
Another run was added in the Top of the 7th, as Maikel Azcuy hit for Isaacs and led off with a double to right and took 3rd on an error. A sac fly by Serena scored Azcuy and make it 14-0.
Pakistan’s offense was limited to two hits and the game was called after 7 inning due to mercy rules, ending their chance at making the World Baseball Classic.
Tonight’s game will feature Great Britain and Brazil at 8:00 PM. Gates open at 6:30 PM.
The winner will take on Israel this Sunday night at 6:00 PM. The loser goes home.