SEOUL, South Korea – Phillippe Aumont (Gatineau, QC) was simply dominant firing eight scoreless innings on the mound with nine strikeouts to lead Canada’s Men’s Baseball Team to a 3-0 win over Cuba in the first game of the WBSC Premier12.
“What a performance by Phillippe,” said Canadian Manager Ernie Whitt. “He was dominant, gritty and calculated in the way he went about his business out on the mound – it was a pleasure to watch him work.”
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Aumont was in fine form from the beginning allowing just one hit over six innings of work while piling up seven strikeouts to frustrate Cuba’s hitters.
Cuba threatened in the sixth after a two-out error and stolen base put speedster Roel Santos on second base but Aumont struck out Erisbel Arruebarruena for his seventh strikeout of the game to end the threat.
“I just tried to focus on the task I had to accomplish and stick to my game plan,” commented Aumont. “I attacked the hitters until the Manager says I’m done.”
Whitt came out to visit Aumont in the eighth as Cuba got two runners aboard on a walk and single but Aumont stayed in the game and managed a fly out before executing on a comebacker to the mound in what would be his final performance in the game.
“Phil’s a competitor, that’s one of his biggest strengths and I was completely comfortable leaving him in the game,” said Whitt. “What we saw him do out there today was truly impressive.”
After being held hitless by Cuba’s Carlos Viera over the first three innings, Canada’s bats came alive in the fourth as Eric Wood (Oshawa, ON) dropped a leadoff double into right field and scored from second base when Michael Saunders (Victoria, BC) followed with a single to left field.
Saunders came up big again in the eighth as his sacrifice bunt moved runners to second and third which eventually led to Wes Darvill (Langley, BC) scoring a on a two-out bases loaded walk to Tristan Pompey (Mississauga, ON) before Rene Tosoni (Port Coquitlam, BC) drew a free pass that gave Canada some much needed insurance runs.
“Not very often will you see your four-hole hitter bunt but Michael had a job to move the runners over and he did that,” explained Whitt. “That’s what Canadian baseball is all about, it’s not ‘I’ it’s a team.”
In the ninth, Whitt turned things over to Scott Mathieson (Aldergrove, BC) who struck out one batter in nailing down the save.
Canada will send LHP Rob Zastryzny (Edmonton, AB) to the mound on Thursday to face host South Korea at the Gocheok Sky Dome with the first pitch set for 5AM ET as Group C play continues.
- October 13, 2011: Canada 4, South Korea 0 (IBAF World Cup)
- September 10, 2009: Canada 9, South Korea 1 (IBAF World Cup)
- August 15, 2008: South Korea 1, Canada 0 (Beijing Olympics)
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In Canada: CBCSports.ca will be streaming Canada’s Group C games along with the CBC Sports app for iOS and Android devices, and via the free CBC Gem streaming service.
- Nov. 7 vs Korea @ 4:40am ET
- Nov. 7 vs AUS @ 9:40pm ET
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