ORLANDO – It was a tough trip in terms of wins for the Junior National Team at the Fall Instructional League camp as the Canadians would drop their final game in Florida to the Atlanta Braves by a score of 11-3.
It would be the Braves who would get on the board first as a leadoff walk followed by a double in the second inning gave Atlanta a 1-0 lead. They would add another run in the inning off of Canadian starter Jonathan Paquet (Ancienne Lorette, QC) to make it 2-0.
Paquet went three solid innings on the mound, allowing two runs on two hits and a walk with a pair of strikeouts.
Canada got on the board in the fourth inning when Tyler McWhirter (Regina, SK) came in to score on an RBI single by Johnathan Solazzo (Mississauga, ON) to cut the lead to 2-1.
The Braves would respond in the bottom half of the fourth by scoring a pair of runs of Jordan Wong (Calgary, AB) and take a 4-1 lead. Atlanta added another run in the fifth inning to make it 5-1.
All together, Wong allowed three runs on five hits and two walks while striking out three batters in two innings of work.
In one swing of the bat, the Braves put the game out of reach in the sixth inning as Cody Johnson hit a grand slam to put Atlanta ahead 9-1.
Canada would tack on a couple of runs in the eighth inning as Joel Pierce (Windsor, ON) and Brooklyn Foster (Langley, BC) would come in to score on a hit and a sacrifice fly to make it 9-3 for Atlanta.
But the Braves would get those two runs back in the bottom of the eighth on three hits and complete the game’s scoring.
Although the Junior National Team ended the Fall Instructional League camp without a win, the experience gained from the camp far outweighs any stats in the win-loss column. The next step on the road to the 2010 World Junior Championship is the Spring Training camp, which will be held in April 2009 at Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex in Orlando.