Four teams will make their debut today in the 38th annual Junior League Youth Baseball World Series at Taylor’s Heritage Park, 12111 Pardee Road.
Day two of the international week-long tournament comes after one of the most exciting opening days in the history of the event for the best teams of 13- and 14-year-old ballplayers from around the globe.
- 11 a.m. The defending JLWS champions from the Shing-Ming Junior Little League from Taoyuan, Chinese Taipei (0-0) vs. the Latin America champions from Santa Cruz, Aruba (1-0)
- 2 p.m. The USA Southeast regional champions from the Elbert County Little League in Elberton , Georgia (0-0) vs. USA Southwest champs from Lufkin, Texas (1-0)
- 5 p.m. The Canadian national champions from the Diamond Academy Little League in Mirabel, Quebec (0-0) vs. the Hills Little League from Sydney, New South Wales, Australia (1-0)
- 8 p.m. The Michigan District 5 champions and World Series host team from Brownstown Township, Michigan (0-0) vs. the USA West regional champions from Manhattan Beach (1-0)
The teams from Mexico, Illinois, Italy and Pennsylvania have the day off, but resume play on Tuesday.
Admission to the games is $5 per carload per day or $15 for a week’s pass. Both fees include parking.
The Junior League World Series is the “older brother” of the more famous Little League World Series, a tournament for 12-year-olds held in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania.
The tournament was founded by Greg Bzura in 1981 and has remained in the city ever since, growing from four American teams the first year to the current 12 teams that come to Taylor from as far away as Australia and as near as Brownstown Township in the Downriver Detroit area. Bzura has been director the entire time and credits a team of hundreds of volunteers for making it happen every year.
Four games will be played daily Sunday through Wednesday at World Series Field on the grounds of the Taylor South Little League. Two games are scheduled for Thursday.
The tournament is played in a “modified double-elimination” format. Teams continue in pool play until they lose twice and four teams remain. Two teams play for the International championship game at 3 p.m. Saturday, followed by the USA title game at 6 p.m.
The world championship game is set for noon on Sunday, August 19.
Games are broadcast free with play by play via streaming video on the website www.ustream.tv/channel/jlws. The world championship game will be broadcast on ESPN2.
Sunday was the opening day of games – one of the most exciting in JLWS history. Three of the games ended in come-from-behind walk-off heroics for the winning teams two of them in extra innings.
Here are game summaries:
Manhattan Beach, California 2, Elk-McKean Little League, Pennsylvania 1: A bases loaded single by Namath Hogan scored Addison Lee from third in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the USA West champions from the Manhattan Beach Little League the win. Elk-McKean took a 1-0 lead when Domenic Allegretto scored on a double steal. Pennsylvania pitcher Ethan Wells threw a no-hitter through 5 1/3 innings before California tied the game in the bottom of the sixth. Charlie Webb scored on a ground out by Ben Geniser. The game remained tied at 1-1 after the regulation seven innings and remained that way until the bottom of the ninth. Aiden Zimmerman went 3-for-3 for Pennsylvania. Charlie Webb was the winning pitcher in relief for California (1-0), which plays the host team from Brownstown, Michigan (0-0) at 8 p.m. Monday. Pennsylvania plays the loser of Monday’s Georgia-Texas game at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
Santa Cruz, Aruba 3, Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico 2: Jaylan Rincones singled on a full count and Edguard Winderdaal Jr. scored to give the Latin America champions an extra-inning victory. The Mexican national champions took a 2-0 lead in the second inning when Victor Sanchez doubled home Andre Garza and Erick Ortega. Aruba tied the score in the bottom of the fourth. Rincones came home on a wild pitch and Kendry Maduro scored on an error. The game remained tied through the regulation seven innings, leading to Rincones’ decisive base hit in the eighth. Shawn Bareno pitched a complete game to earn the victory for Aruba. The Latin America champs (1-0) play Chinese Taipei (0-0) at 11 a.m. Monday. Mexico plays the loser of Monday’s Canada-Australia game at 11 a.m. Tuesday.
Lufkin, Texas 7, Chicago, Illinois 6: A bases-loaded double by Hunter Ditsworth scored Jeffery Buchanan, Aidan Wood and Cameron Jackson to give the USA Southwest champions a come-from-behind win. Texas scored the first four runs of the game. Illinois scored six times in the top of the seventh inning to take a 6-4 lead. But Texas loaded the bases in the bottom of the seventh to set the table for Ditsworth, who went 2-for-3, knocked in five runs and was the starting pitcher. Alex Vasquez, Wyatt Attkisson and Joseph Perona had two hits apiece for the USA Central region champions from the Warren Park Little League in Chicago. Texas (1-0) plays at 2 p.m. Monday against the Georgia (0-0). Illinois plays at 2 p.m. Tuesday against the loser of Monday’s game between Chinese Taipei and Aruba.
Sydney, Australia 7, Emilia Romagna, Italy 5: The Australian national champions from the Hills Little League in Sydney scored seven times in the top of the fifth inning and held on for the win. The Europe/Africa regional champions from Italy led much of the game after scoring three times in the second inning and added two more in the sixth, but fell short. Christo Lyberopoulos went 3-for-4 and got the win in relief for Australia. Allesandro Beccari went 2-for3 for Italy. Australia’s next game is at 5 p.m. Monday against Canada. Italy plays at 5 p.m. Tuesday against the loser of Monday’s Chinese Taipei-Aruba game.
For more information about the World Series, visit the website www.cityoftaylor.com/worldseries. The World Series has an active Facebook page, www.facebook.com/juniorleagueworldseries. The World Series’ Instagram page is active during World Series week. Search jlws_taylor.