SAN PEDRO DE MACORIS, DR – The Junior National Team’s offence continues to excel in the Dominican, this time crossing eight runners at the plate. However, it was almost not enough as the Texas Rangers put up five runs in the last two innings, three in the eighth and two in the ninth, but the Juniors held on to an 8-7 win.
Brett Lawrie (Langley, BC) continues to tear the cover off the ball, once again going deep for his eighth homer in five games in the Dominican. His latest long ball came in the first inning, making it four time out five games that the Canadians put up at least a run in the first.
After Lawrie opened the scoring, the Juniors added a pair in the second on a two-run double from Greg Densem (Toronto, ON) to score Lionel Morrill (Edmonton, AB) and Carter Morrison (Langley, BC) and put Canada ahead 3-0.
The Rangers would respond in the bottom half of the inning on a solo home run off of Andrew Ledger (Toronto, ON) to bring the lead down to two. That would be the only run Ledger would allow, going three strong innings.
The Canadians brought the lead back to three in the fourth inning when Morrill came in to score on a fielder’s choice to make it 4-1.
But the Rangers quickly responded in the bottom half of the inning with another solo shot, this time off of Danny Britton-Foster (Ladysmith, BC). But like Ledger, that would be the only run allowed by Britton-Foster in three innings of work. He allowed five hits and struck out three in his outing.
In the fifth inning, the Juniors padded their lead with three runs in the frame to put them ahead 7-2. Ivan Hartle (North Vancouver, BC) started the inning with a bunt single, followed by an error by the shortstop to allow Lawrie to reach base. After a walk to Marcus Knecht (Toronto, ON) to load the bases, Michael Crouse (Port Moody, BC) drew a walk to score Hartle. An RBI single from Morrill brought in Lawrie and a wild pitch allowed Knecht to score.
The lead would increase to six in the seventh inning on the second RBI of the day for Brett Lawrie, who was 2-for-5 on the day, to bring in Hartle.
It turned out the Canadians would need every one of those runs as the Rangers would shorten the lead to three on a three-run home run in the eighth inning. Texas would load the bases with nobody out in the ninth and would bring two across on a double play and an RBI single, but Mike Monster (Kelowna, BC) got the last hitter to strikeout putting an end to the game.
The Junior National Team will next take on the Cleveland Indians on Monday, May 26 at 11 am in Boca Chica.