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2010 Intercontinental Cup

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The 2010 Intercontinental Cup was held from October 23 to October 31, 2010 in Taiwan. It was the 17th Intercontinental Cup though the IBAF administration indicated it would be the last such event. Ten teams played: Flag of Cuba Cuba, Flag of Japan Japan, Flag of South Korea South Korea, Flag of Chinese Taipei Chinese Taipei, Flag of Czech Republic Czech Republic, Flag of Nicaragua Nicaragua, Flag of Thailand Thailand, Flag of Hong Kong Hong Kong, Flag of Panama Panama and Flag of Netherlands Netherlands.

Contents

[edit] Competing Nations

  • Flag of Cuba Cuba has won the event a record 16 times. They are looking for their first international title since the 2007 Pan American Games, a stretch of five tournaments, their worst run ever.
  • Flag of Czech Republic Czech Republic had never played in an Intercontinental Cup before, but had appeared in the 2009 Baseball World Cup as one of the host nations. It marks their first major tourney outside of Europe.
  • Flag of Hong Kong Hong Kong had never played in a major tournament outside of Asia previously - at least on the men's side. They have sent clubs to the Women's Baseball World Cup on occasion.
  • Flag of Italy Italy had never finished higher than 6th in 11 prior appearances, but was coming off a Gold at the 2010 European Championship, their first European title in over a decade.
  • Flag of Japan Japan won the event in both 1973 and 1997. They were sending a squad of prospects with minimal professional experience.

[edit] Rosters

See 2010 Intercontinental Cup (Rosters)

[edit] First-Round Games

[edit] October 23

[edit] October 24

[edit] October 25

[edit] October 26

Rob Cordemans and Shota Oba engaged in an excellent pitching duel. In the third, the Orange got on the board when DH Bryan Engelhardt singled and RF Danny Rombley tripled him in. After an out, LF Eugene Kingsale grounded to 3B Taishi Nakagawa, who threw to first to get Kingsale, then 1B Masashi Nohara fired home to get Rombley at the plate.

In the 6th, CF Itaru Hashimoto bunted his way aboard. 2B Tetsuya Kokubo hit into an error by veteran 3B Raily Legito. Cordemans retired #3 batter Taishi Ota, then was relieved by Diegomar Markwell after having given up 2 hits and no runs in 5 1/3 IP. RF Takahiro Iwamoto singled to load the bases. Nohara grounded to 1B Curt Smith, who duplicated Nohara's play earlier by gunning home to get leadoff man Hashimoto at the plate. Markwell whiffed Nakagawa to end the inning.

With one out in the 9th, Nohara singled. Boston Red Sox minor leaguer Dennis Neuman was summoned by Jim Stoeckel to relieve Markwell. Nohara stole second, but Neuman struck out Nakagawa to move within an out of the save. His control let him down as he plunked SS Tetsuya Tani. Neuman got a 1-2 count on C Tubasa Aizawa and was a strike away from ending it when Aizawa delivered a clutch 2-run double to left to give Japan its only runs.

In the bottom of the 9th, Gregorius struck out against Yusuke Uemura, but C Sidney de Jong walked. Dwayne Kemp pinch-ran and Cardinals farmhand Curt Smith singled him to third. Up came Legito, the all-time Dutch national team leader in games played. He couldn't deliver this time, though, grounding into a game-ending 6-4-3 double play.

[edit] October 27

  • Flag of South Korea South Korea 9, Flag of Czech Republic Czech Republic 0. Wong-jun Ko allows one hit and no runs in six innings while Martin Schneider gives up 3 in 3 as South Korea beats the Czechs for the last spot in the Medal round. C Ji-young Lee goes 4 for 4 with a double, run and 2 RBI for the winners, while the Czechs muster just two hits following their rout of Hong Kong a day earlier.

[edit] First-Round Standings

[edit] Pool A

  1. Flag of Cuba Cuba, 4-0
  2. Flag of Chinese Taipei Chinese Taipei, 3-1
  3. Flag of South Korea South Korea, 2-2
  4. Flag of Czech Republic Czech Republic, 1-3
  5. Flag of Hong Kong Hong Kong, 0-4

[edit] Pool B

  1. Flag of Netherlands Netherlands, 3-1
  2. Flag of Japan Japan, 3-1
  3. Flag of Italy Italy, 3-1
  4. Flag of Nicaragua Nicaragua, 1-3
  5. Flag of Thailand Thailand, 0-4

[edit] Second-Round Games

[edit] October 28

  • Flag of Cuba Cuba 6, Flag of Netherlands Netherlands 3. The Netherlands gave Cuba a scare before falling in a rematch of the Gold Medal game from the 2006 Cup; they had beaten Cuba in a game at the 2007 Baseball World Cup.

Tom Stuifbergen of the Twins chain started off badly, allowing a leadoff homer to CF Giorvis Duvergel, 2B Héctor Olivera Jr. doubled but was thrown out trying to stretch it to a triple. Stuifbergen then whiffed #3 batter Michel Enriquez and cleanup threat Alfredo Despaigne. In the second, RF Alexei Bell tripled and 1B José Dariel Abreu grounded him in for a 2-0 lead.

The Dutch tied it in the third against Freddy Asiel Álvarez. RF Danny Rombley doubled, grounded over and scored on a single by LF Eugène Kingsale. SS Mariekson Gregorius singled Kingsale to third, then C Sidney de Jong tied with a single.

In the fifth, CF Shaldimar Daantji walked with two outs and Kingsale brought him around with a triple. Jonder Martínez replaced Álvarez and tossed shutout ball for the final 4 1/3 innings. Abreu led off the 7th with a homer off Stuifbergen to tie the game; it was the first run Tom had given up since the first. Arshwin Asjes relieved Stuifbergen an out later. SS Yorbis Borroto singled, then Duvergel hit into an error by 3B Raily Legito. Olivera tripled in both runners for a 5-3 lead. In the 8th, Cuba got insurance when Bell tripled off Red Sox farmhand Dennis Neuman and scored on a wild pitch. Cuba remained the lone unbeaten team.

[edit] October 29

  • Flag of Cuba Cuba 4, Flag of Japan Japan 1. Japan's young bats proved no match for Cuban veterans Yulieski González and Yadier Pedroso, who combined to strike out 16 as Cuba locked up a trip to the finals. Japan got on the board first, though, when C Yuhei Nakamura led off the third with a double. He was bunted over and then scored on a wild pitch for Japan's lone score. The lead was short-lived. In the bottom of the third, SS Yorbis Borroto drew a leadoff walk from Shigeru Kaga and CF Giorvis Duvergel doubled him in. Duvergel advanced on a grounder and scored on a sacrifice fly by RF Alexei Bell. In the 4th, C Ariel Pestano singled in LF Yohandry Urgellés. In the 7th, Borroto singled and was bunted over. 2B Héctor Olivera Jr. singled Borroto to third, the 12th hit off Kaga. Yusuke Uemura relieved and gave up a RBI single to Bell for the last run. González improved to 2-0 and Pedroso notched his second save.

Italy got as close as it would in the second, the only time they scored in 7 innings against Wei-Lun Pan. With one out, C Juan Pablo Angrisano reached on an error and LF Laidel Chapellí singled him to second. 1B Alex Sambucci grounded over the runners, then 2B Alessandro Vaglio (fresh off his rookie season in Italy) singled both men in to make it 3-2.

In the bottom of the second, 2B Po-Ting Hsiao and Lin led off with singles. With one out, Panerati made a run-costing error, then Lo doubled in Lin for a 5-2 score. The game's last run came in the 5th against Royals farmhand Claudio Bavera. Bavera hit the first batter he faced, Liu. A wild pitch advanced him. With one out, Liu (who tied for the 2010 CPBL lead in swipes) stole third, then scored on a sacrifice fly by Hsiao. Hsiao and Che-Hsuan Lin each finished the game with three hits.

  • Flag of Nicaragua Nicaragua 12, Flag of Hong Kong Hong Kong 2. One bright spot for Hong Kong was that it took a lead for the first time in the tournament. 3B Chin-Nam Nau singled against Junior Téllez and stole second. One out later, 2B Tsz-Tung Wu singled and an error by RF Justo Rivas let Nau score. Nicaragua quickly retook the lead, with 3 second-inning runs off Tak-Pong Chow and the rout was on. Rivas reached base four times and scored three runs.

[edit] October 30

In the 9th, Legito led off with a single off Chih-Lung Huang and Rombley grounded him over. Backup DH Bryan Engelhardt walked. Former Rockies prospect Ching-Lung Lo relieved Huang and retired CF Shaldimar Daantji on a double play grounder; it was Taiwan's third double play of the day. Taiwan went ahead in the 10th. With the international baseball tournament rule of two runners starting aboard in extra innings, Orlando Yntema struck out two but walked 2B Yung-Chi Chen and cleanup man Chih-Sheng Lin singled in a run. Chen-Yu Chung also tried to score on the play, but was thrown out at home on a relay from LF Eugène Kingsale to SS Mariekson Gregorius to backup C Shawn Zarraga.

In the bottom of the 10th, the Dutch started with Daantji on second and Kingsale at first. A wild pitch by Lo put the men in scoring position and a passed ball by Kao tied it at three. Gregorius then crushed a full-count offering from Lo over the fence in right for a game-winning homer.

Cuba got all its offense in the bottom of the 5th. C Yulexis La Rosa opened with a single off starter Tiago Da Silva. SS Rudy Reyes doubled him in. Marco Mazzieri yanked Da Silva and replaced him with former Royals farmhand Yovany D'Amico, which proved to be a bad move. CF Giorvis Duvergel bunted his way aboard, then 2B Héctor Olivera Jr. singled to make it 3-2. D'Amico threw a wild pitch to put Duvergel on third, then walked RF Alexei Bell to load the bags. DH Alex Malleta singled to right, scoring two and putting Cuba ahead for good, then LF Yoandry Urgellés hit a sacrifice fly to right for the final run. That was all Hinojosa would need.

  • Flag of South Korea South Korea 8, Flag of Japan Japan 1. In a preview of the 5th/6th place game, South Korea pounded their main rivals. Hyun-june Park threw a complete game win with only LF Akira Nakamura (2 for 3, BB, 2B, R) batting well for Japan. In the meantime, Japanese hurlers walked eight, with starter Shota Oba giving out five free passes in three rough innings (he gave up seven runs). CF Soo-bin Jung drove in three and DH Jae-hwan Kim went 3 for 4 with a walk and a homer.
  • Flag of Nicaragua Nicaragua 11, Flag of Czech Republic Czech Republic 5. In the 7th/8th place game, Nicaragua pounded Radim Chroust for three first-inning runs. The Czechs countered with two in the bottom of the first off Mario Peña, but Chroust gave up two more in the second and Nicaragua never looked back. Nicaraguan pitchers struck out 14 but allowed 13 hits and 5 runs. RF Justo Rivas went 3 for 5 with four RBI to lead the offense.
  • Flag of Thailand Thailand 6, Flag of Hong Kong Hong Kong 5. In the 9th/10th place game, Hong Kong nearly got its first win in a global baseball tournament, but that honor instead went to Thailand. DH Wai-Hang Leung and RF Kam-Tao Ip each cracked a RBI triple in the second against Meeboonrod Nattapong. In the third, Hong Kong scored again. Tsz-Chun Heung, who entered 0-2, tossed shutout ball for four before SS Somsak Sarnwit drove in two in the 5th. Two Thai errors in the 6th put them behind, 4-2. Thailand took its first lead in the bottom of the 6th, scoring three, including two on an error by 3B Sampahangsit Nattapong. Versus Kamolphan Kanjanavisut in the 8th, Ip tripled in another run to tie the score at five. In the bottom of the 8th, Thailand got the final run of the tight Asian duel as LF Jirapod Srisaipet hit a sacrifice fly to score pinch-runner Anukul Sudsawad.

[edit] October 31

Through five, Hee-soo Park had fanned nine Japanese batters and allowed no runs, but he faded in the 6th. C Yuhei Nakamura opened with a single, then LF Akira Nakamura bunted into a force at second. A wild pitch sent him all the way to third, then CF Itaru Hashimoto singled him home. After a ground-out put Hashimoto on second, RF Takahiro Iwamoto singled in Hashimoto for a 2-1 lead. Jung-hyuk Im relieved Park and tossed hitless, walkless, scoreless ball for the last 3 1/3 innings but Korea's offense couldn't get back into the game.

  • Bronze Medal Game: Flag of Italy Italy 4, Flag of Chinese Taipei Chinese Taipei 3. For the second straight day, a European team downed the hopes of the host nation, this time with 6,553 in attendance. By doing so, Italy got its first Bronze Medal (or medal of any kind) in a baseball tournament which included non-European teams (having won numerous medals in European Championship play). Also, two European teams won medals for the first time ever in a global baseball tournament.

Hung-Wen Chen, who reached AAA with the Chicago Cubs system in 2010, had a rough first, but some of that was due to poor defense behind him. SS Anthony Granato hit into a miscue by Reds farmhand Yen-Wen Kuo at short. 3B Juan Carlos Infante bunted to his counterpart, Han Lin, who also erred. With men on the corners, RF Mario Chiarini ground into a run-scoring force. Chiarini stole second, then DH Jairo Ramos Gizzi singled. C Juan Pablo Angrisano struck out, then Italy pulled off a daring delayed double steal with 39-year-old Ramos Gizzi breaking for second and Chiarini coming home; the ploy worked and Italy went up 2-0.

In the bottom of the first, Kuo delivered a one-out single to try to avenge himself, and advanced on a passed ball by Angrisano. With two away, DH Chih-Sheng Lin singled off Cody Cillo to make it 2-1. Taiwan tied it in the bottom of the second. With one away, Han Lin singled. An out later, CF Che-Hsuan Lin singled, as did Kuo, the latter hit scoring Han Lin with Taiwan's second run. Marco Mazzieri yanked Cillo in favor of fellow American Marco Grifantini, who would shut out Taiwan for the next 4 1/3 innings.

Italy retook the lead in the 5th. With two outs, Infante drew a four-pitch walk from Chen and Chiarini singled. Ramos Gizzi doubled to right, scoring Infante to make it 3-2, Azzurri. Taiwan challenged in the home half of the 5th. 2B Yung-Chi Chen and Chih-Sheng Lin opened with singles and were bunted over by C Chun-Hsiu Chen. That brought up LF Kuo-Hui Lo, a Seattle minor leaguer. Lo went down swinging, but 1B Kuo-Ching Kao walked on Grifantini's 9th offering of the at-bat, having fouled off three potential strike threes. Han Lin failed to deliver there, looking at a called strike three to strand the bases full.

Infante began the 7th with a double off Chih-Lung Huang and a passed ball put him on third. Chiarini walked and Ramos Gizzi hit into a run-scoring force to put Italy ahead by two. Taiwan got back one in the bottom of the 7th. Former Pitt Panther Justin Cicatello relieved and gave up a single to Chih-Sheng Lin; the slugger promptly swiped second. Chun-Hsiu Chen grounded Lin to third, then Lo grounded back to Cicatello, scoring Lin to close within a run.

In the 8th, speedy Red Sox prospect Che-Hsuan Lin singled off Cicatello but was gunned down trying to swipe second base. Infante led off the 9th with a walk but got no further. In the bottom of the 9th, Cubs farmhand Alessandro Maestri retired Kuo, then walked Yung-Chi Chen. He faced Chih-Sheng Lin, the 2010 CPBL home run and RBI king, and fanned him on three pitches. PH Po-Ting Hsiao singled Chen to second, then Maestri walked Lo on a full count. With the bases loaded, two outs and a one-run lead, Maestri faced Kuo-Ching Kao, who once held the CPBL record for hits in a season. Kao only managed a weak grounder back to Maestri to end the game, though, giving Italy a historic win and Taiwan a disappointing loss at home.

It remained 2-0 until the 8th when reliever Berry van Driel gave up a double to CF Giorvis Duvergel (3 for 3 with a walk on the day) and a home run to RF Alexei Bell. Eduardo Martín summoned the Cup's All-Star reliever, Yadier Pedroso, to replace González (104 pitches) in the 9th. He would allow more hits in no innings than his predecessor had given up in eight innings. LF Eugène Kingsale led off with a walk. SS Mariekson Gregorius, C Sidney de Jong and 1B Curt Smith all singled, scoring one run and loading the bases, the potential tying run aboard. Cuba next turned to two-time Olympian Jonder Martínez to face Giants farmhand Sharlon Schoop. Schoop flew out. 3B Raily Legito, a three-time Olympian, struck out. That brought up RF Danny Rombley, a former Expos minor leaguer and fellow former Olympian. The Amersfoort native took three straight strikes looking to end the game.

[edit] Final Standings

  1. Flag of Cuba Cuba, 8-0
  2. Flag of Netherlands Netherlands, 5-3
  3. Flag of Italy Italy, 6-2
  4. Flag of Chinese Taipei Chinese Taipei, 5-3
  5. Flag of Japan Japan, 4-4
  6. Flag of South Korea South Korea, 3-5
  7. Flag of Nicaragua Nicaragua, 3-3
  8. Flag of Czech Republic Czech Republic, 2-4
  9. Flag of Thailand Thailand, 1-5
  10. Flag of Hong Kong Hong Kong, 0-6

[edit] Awards and Honors

[edit] All-Star Team


Intercontinental Cup

1973 | 1975 | 1977 | 1979 | 1981 | 1983 | 1985 | 1987 | 1989
1991 | 1993 | 1995 | 1997 | 1999 | 2002 | 2006 | 2010

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