Teams face must-win games all day in the Junior League World Series in Taylor

TAYLOR, MICHIGAN – Teams from around the world face must-win games Wednesday as the 30th annual Junior League World Series continues at Taylor’s Heritage Park.

The World Series features the best teams of 13- and 14-year-old players. It’s the big brother of the Little League World Series for 12-year-olds in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

Wednesday is day three of the weeklong series. Four games are scheduled and each one has implications for the teams that want to win the world championship.

Wednesday’s Schedule
Kirovograd Center/Rivne, Ukraine (1-2) vs. Guatemala City, Guatemala (1-1), 11 a.m.
Tyler, Texas (2-0) vs. El Monte, California (1-1), 2 p.m.
Jeffersonville, Indiana (1-2) vs. Mechanicsville, Virginia (1-1), 5 p.m.
Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada (0-2) vs. Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico (1-1), 8 p.m.

The Rest of the Week
Teams are competing in the USA or International pools. Four more games are scheduled Thursday. The top two teams in each pool play for the International and USA championship games at 5 and 8 p.m. Friday. The world championship game is set for 4 p.m. on Saturday. The title game will be televised live on ESPN2.

Admission is $5 per carload per day or $10 for the entire series. Both prices include parking. Heritage Park is located at 12111 Pardee Road. Games are played on World Series Field.

Pool Play Standings
USA Pool

Texas 2-0
Virginia 1-1
California 1-1
New Jersey 1-2
Indiana    1-2

International Pool
Chinese Taipei 3-0
Guatemala 1-1
Mexico 1-1
Ukraine    1-2
Canada 0-2

Looking Ahead: Thursday’s Games
Taipei City, Chinese Taipei vs. Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico, 11 a.m.
Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada vs. Guatemala City, Guatemala, 2 p.m.
El Monte, California vs. Mechanicsville, Virginia, 5 p.m.
Tyler, Texas vs. Freehold Township, New Jersey, 8 p.m.

Friday’s Games
International Championship, 5 p.m.
United States Championship, 8 p.m.

Saturday’s Schedule

Home Run Derby, 12:15 p.m.
World Championship Game: International Champion vs. USA Champion, 4 p.m.

Tuesday’s highlights
Chinese Taipei became the first team to win three games in the Junior League Baseball World Series at Taylor’s Heritage Park. The Asia-Pacific champions from Taipei City defeated the Canadian national champions from Coquitlam, British Columbia, 10-0, on Tuesday. The win was the third straight in three days for the Chung-Ching Junior Little League team, which is making its debut in Taylor. The win extended Taipei City’s shutout streak to 12 innings. Taipei has outscored opponents in the International Pool, 30-2. Cheng Yu Tsai hit two home runs, giving him three for the series. Tzu Wei Lin also homered. Tsai and Lin combined for six of Taipai’s 15 hits. Three Taipei pitchers combined on a three-hitter. The game was called on the 10-run mercy rule with one out in the fifth inning. Canada fell to 0-2.

After losing twice in the USA Pool, Freehold Township, New Jersey, came up with 17 hits and a five-hit pitching performance to roll to a 12-1 win over Jeffersonville, Indiana. The USA East regional champions scored three runs in the first, led 6-0 before the Central regional champs picked up their only run in the fourth and added six more runs in the sixth. The game was called after six on the 10-run mercy rule. Ten different New Jersey players scored and nine knocked in runs. Anthony Yaccarine and Steven Ginter had three hits apiece. Joseph Lodispoto had a home run. Pitcher Christopher Talbott went 2-for-4 and knocked in three runs. He also earned the victory, combining with Kevin Checkett on a five-hitter. Damin Smith knocked in Dalton Duley with Indiana’s only run. Both teams finished the day 1-2.

Jesus Garcia pitched a two-hitter to lead the Mexican national champions from Guaymas, Sonora, to a 3-0 win over the European champions from Kirovograd Center/Rivne, Ukraine. The win evened Mexico’s record at 1-1. Ukraine fell to 1-2. Garcia pitched all seven innings, striking out six and walking two. Mexico scored twice in the second inning and once in the third. In the second, Luis Cardenas’ sacrifice fly scored Oswaldo Martinez, who doubled and advanced to third when Garcia was safe on an error. Then Garcia stole second and scored on a base hit by Jose Suchilt. The third-inning run came without a hit. Richardo Gomez walked, advanced to second on a fielder’s choice, moved to third on a passed ball and scored on a third-strike wild pitch. Suchilt had two of Mexico’s four hits. Maksym Romanchuk took the loss for Ukraine, although none of the three runs was earned.

The only two undefeated teams in the USA Pool squared off in Tuesday’s nightcap that had the atmosphere of a championship contest. In the end, Southwest champion Tyler, Texas, defeated, Southeast champion Mechanicsville, Virginia, 7-2. The Texas all-stars scored all the runs they would need in the first inning. Patrick Mahomes II, son of former major leaguer Pat Mahomes, led off the bottom of the first inning with a 296-foot homer. Mason Mallard followed with a walk and scampered home on the first triple of the tournament, off the bat of Jake Parker. Patrick Day bunted home to make it 3-0.  Virginia scrapped for one run in the second. A single, an overthrow and a passed ball allowed Matt Corley to reach third and he scored on a Taylor Campbell fielder’s choice. Texas made it 4-1 in the fourth when Chandler Hall singled home Pat Day and 5-1 in the fifth when Parker singled home Mallard. Texas upped its lead to 7-1 in the sixth when two walks and a hits batsman loaded the bases and Mahomes singled home Mike Caruso and Chris Davis. Virginia's Jeffrey Decker homered in the seventh to end the scoring. Decker went 3-for-3 with two doubles, the home run and a walk.

Lunch is on the Taylor Moose
On Wednesday and Thursday, members of the Taylor Moose open their lodge to players and families for lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lodge members provide the food, plus some outdoor games and prizes and time for relaxation. The Junior League World Series thanks the Taylor Moose for all of their contributions to the World Series and to the community throughout the year.

Best Buy Shoots the Shirts
Those shirts that are flying into the crowd during games are compliments of Best Buy, the major sponsor of the Junior League World Series, Best Buy makes a sizable donation annually to the World Series, but also provides dozens of volunteers who combine for hundreds of hours of help throughout the week. World Series Director Greg Bzura thanked Best Buy employees for their amazing and generous contributions to the series.

From Taylor to the Pros
A number of Junior League World Series players have gone on to become even more famous. At least 11 players went on to play Major League baseball: Gary Sheffield, Brett Myers, Erik Bedard, Derek Bell, Jose and Javier Valentin, Erubial Durazo, Delino DeShields. Chad Hermanson, Shannon Withem and Adam Loewen. Others are University of Nebraska football Coach Bo Pelini, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel and National Hockey League players Chris Dingman and Steve Reinprecht.

Need More Information?
The Junior League World Series website features up-to-date news throughout the World Series and a profile and rosters for each team. For information, visit www.cityoftaylor.com/worldseries. The World Series also offers regular updates via the social networking site Facebook. Search for JLWS – Junior League World Series – Taylor Michigan.