1993 Intercontinental Cup
The 1993 Intercontinental Cup was the 11th Intercontinental Cup. It was held from June 23 to July 4, 1993 in Italy, the country that had hosted the first Intercontinental Cup. It featured the 6th of seven straight Gold Medals for the Cuban national team.
- Cuba, 9-0
- Japan, 8-1
- United States, 6-3
- Nicaragua, 5-4
- South Korea, 5-4
- Australia, 5-4
- Mexico, 3-6
- Italy, 2-7
- Spain, 2-7
- France, 0-9
- United States 6, Japan 3. John Powell went the distance to beat Masanori Sugiura in an upset, even though Sugiura fans 11. 3B Todd Walker doubles, homers and drives in four runs for the USA, while DH Todd Helton singles, walks twice and scores twice in a strong showing by Todds. In a losing cause, 2B Toshihisa Nishi homers and drives in 2 of Japan's 3 runs.
- Cuba 10, Nicaragua 1. Osvaldo Fernandez tosses a complete game win while counterpart Jose Quiroz lasts only 1 1/3 innings (4 hits, 3 walks, 1 run) in taking the defeat. Offensive stars for Cuba are 1B Orestes Kindelan (3 for 4, HR) and CF José Estrada (3 for 4, BB, 2B).
- Gold Medal Game: Cuba 9, United States 4. Cuba rolls to victory, leading 6-0 after five innings en route to victory. CF José Estrada again leads the way from the leadoff slot, going 3 for 4 with 3 runs. 2B Antonio Pacheco drives in three. The pitching comes from Lázaro Valle (W) and Omar Ajete (Sv), who combine for 14 strikeouts. Paul Wilson takes the loss, with 8 hits and 6 runs in 4 innings. Todd Dunn and Mike Martin each make two errors for the USA. 3B Todd Walker again shines, going 3 for 4 with a double, home run and 3 RBI.
- Bronze Medal Game: Japan 9, Nicaragua 0. Hidekazu Watanabe tosses a shutout and 1B Hidenori Taniguchi goes 4 for 4 with 2 doubles, a walk, steal, two runs and a RBI. 1991 Intercontinental Cup MVP Epifanio Perez is handed the loss.
- Australia was in the middle of the pack at 5-4 for manager Steve Gilmore. Ross Jones (1-0, Sv, 1.13) and Brett Cederblad (1.23) had the best ERAs, while Simon Sheldon-Collins (2-1, 7.53) led the team in wins and strikeouts (18 in 14 1/3 IP). Parris Mitchell had the worst ERA (17.18) while allowing 11 hits in 3 2/3 IP. RF Aaron Harvey (.344/.364/.469) was an All-Star while 2B Andrew Scott hit .429/.500/.800 and DH-OF Stuart Thompson hit .304/.346/.565. The only player who would appear in the majors was part-time middle infielder Trent Durrington (3 for 12, 6 K, 1 SB, 2 CS). They were outscored 46-41.
- Cuba romped their way to a 11-0 record, outscoring the opposition 101-15. The manager was Jorge Fuentes. They had a team ERA of 1.40 and a batting line of .404/.451/.684. The tournament MVP was Omar Linares, who hit .550/.620/1.150 with 6 homers, 18 runs and 16 RBI. Six Cubans made the All-Star team. In addition to 3B Linares, 1B Orestes Kindelan (.381/.449/.881, 6 HR, 17 RBI), SS Germán Mesa (.441/.525/.500), OF Ermidelio Urrutia (.409/.447/.750), DH Lourdes Gourriel (.390/.391/.683, 16 RBI) and P Omar Ajete (1-0, 1.17, 24 K, 3 H in 15 2/3 IP) were chosen. Mesa was named the Outstanding Defensive Player for the Cup. Also playing well were 2B Antonio Pacheco (.386/.408/.636, 16 R, 13 RBI), CF José Estrada (.419/.468/.488, 12 R), LF Víctor Mesa (.364/.375/.591), Rolando Arrojo (2-0, 0.82, 17 K in 11 IP), Giorge Díaz (2-0, 0 R, 2 H in 9 IP) and Jorge Luis Valdés (1-0, 0 R, 2 H, 15 K in 9 IP).
- France was last at 0-9 with 25 runs scored and 117 runs allowed. They were guided by Yoshio Yoshida. They had 23 errors, almost as many miscues as runs. The team ERA was 13.29. Bright spots were RF Arnaud Fau (.400/.438/.600) and P Guillaume Coste (1 ER in 9 2/3 IP; he allowed 7 runs altogether but no other pitcher had an ERA under 11.12). Their lone close game was a 8-7 loss to Spain.
- Italy was 2-7, beating weaker European countries France and Spain. They scored 41 runs and allowed 57. The top pitcher was Paolo Ceccaroli (0-1, 0.79) and the worst hurler was Alessandro Parri (6 R, 9 H, 3 BB in 4 IP). The offense was led by All-Star LF Marco Ubani (.342/.359/.474, 9 RBI), 1B-DH Guglielmo Trinci (.407/.500/.667), CF-RF Roberto De Franceschi (.364/.462/.727) and 3B Ruggero Bagialemani (.333/.353/.500). SS Massimo Ciaramella was only 1 for 18 and made 2 errors, while Ceccaroli (as a DH-1B) did not hit as well as he pitched, going just 1 for 16. Their manager was Silvano Ambrosioni.
- Japan had the second-best record at 9-2 and a 93-27 run differential but only got the Bronze due to their semifinal loss to the US. It was their worst finish in the event between 1988 and 1998. They were guided by Katsugi Kawashima. They had the second-most All-Stars after Cuba with C Hideaki Okubo (.500/.561/.688, Opp. SB 3 for 9, second in average), 2B Toshihisa Nishi (.317/.391/.610, 12 R, tied for the lead with 5 steals) and P Hidekazu Watanabe (4-0, 1 UER in 25 IP, the leader in wins and ERA). Other good contributors included 3B Naoki Matsumoto (.357/.419/.714), 1B Hidenori Taniguchi (.415/.479/.780, 17 RBI), Masatsugu Takiguchi (1-0, 0.71) and Mitsuhiro Saito (1-1, 0.84). CF Tatsuya Ide (.333/.414/.583) tied Nishi for the most steals while both SS Makoto Imaoka (.300/.300/.500) and LF-3B Hiroki Kokubo (.350/.364/.550) would become stars in the pro ranks.
- Mexico was 3-6 to finish 7th, ahead of only the three European nations (the only teams Mexico beat). They were outscored 60-36 under skipper Jaime Fabela. RF Luis Carlos Garcia led the offense at .424/.457/.636 while Ricardo Cabella had their best ERA at 3.38. David Cardenas allowed 7 runs and 6 hits in his only inning of work.
- Nicaragua finished fourth, in between two Bronze Medal finishes. They scored 43 runs and allowed 43 runs for manager Francisco Portobanco. The offense was led by long-time national team members 3B Henry Roa (.364/.378/.568, 12 RBI) and DH Ariel Delgado (.350/.500/.450) while LF Anibal Vega bombed (.120/.154/.120). Berney Baldolio tossed 8 shutout innings and Jose Quiroz was 1-1 with a save and a 1.50 ERA to lead the pitchers.
- South Korea was just in the middle of the pack despite the 4th-best run differential (56-32) and the top two strikeout pitchers, Young-pil Choi (2-0, 1.80, 30 K in 20 IP) and Jae-woong Shin (1-2, 3.12, 40 K in 26 IP). 1B Sung-yong Lee (.333/.456/.833) and RF Suk-hee Jang (.333/.484/.750) led the hitters. 2B Hae-young Ma (.273/.342/.545) went on to the best pro career.
- Spain was managed by Jake Molina and went 2-7 despite being outscored 90-23. They beat France, which was unsurprising, but also topped Australia. RF Javier Díez was their top hitter at .321/.367/.429 but the team hit just .171/.250/.218 and had nearly as many errors (20) as runs (23). Among the lightweight hitters were LF Javier Arrondo (1 for 14) and SS Manuel Martinez (1 for 16). Oscar Rebolleda (Sv, 0 R in 4 IP) and José Pulido (1-0, 1.23) were the top hurlers while David Setas (9 R, 7 H, 6 BB in 2 IP) was the least effective one.
- United States went 7-4 to finish second, their best finish in the event since 1987; they would not do as well through 2010, the final Intercontinental Cup. The skipper was John Anderson. The US outscored opponents 71-43 and lost only to Cuba (twice), Japan and Australia. The US had no All-Stars, as their two top threats were at the same positions as Cuba's big two. The US stars at the plate were 3B Todd Walker (.409/.438/.773, a tourney-high 21 RBI) and 1B-DH Todd Helton (.429/.524/.571, 15 R). They were not as deep as Cuba, though, with under-.200 hitters in RF Todd Dunn (.172/.273/.276), C Darren Grass (.143/.200/.286) and UT Mike Martin Jr. (.167/.250/.167). The pitching was led by Dustin Hermanson (2 Sv, 0 R in 3 2/3 IP), Carlton Loewer (1-0, 1.80), Danny Graves (1-0, 2.03) and John Powell (2-1, 2.63).