Team Italy places 10th in U12 Baseball World Cup after loss to Japan

Team Italy places 10th in U12 Baseball World Cup after loss to Japan
06/08/2022
Team Italy suffered a four-inning mercy-rule 18-0 loss to seventh place Japan at the U12 Baseball World Cup in Tainan, Taiwan on Friday, August 5, 2022

A combined no-hitter from Japan pitchers Haruki Narita, Akihiro Kobayashi, Yota Akimoto and Shunei Kashiwagi kept the Team Italy offense quiet in the U12 Baseball World Cup Placement Game under the lights at Tainan City's ASPAC B Stadium on Friday, August 5, 2022. A walk by relief pitcher Shunei Kashiwagi to Azzurrini shortstop Edoardo Angioni in the top of the fourth inning was the only thing short of a perfect game by the Japanese in the 18-0 shutout.

Team Italy starting pitcher Antonio Vaio threw a scoreless first inning before Japan registered 12 runs in the bottom of the second inning. Reliever Justin Gango tried to stop the bleeding but could not fare any better in the bottom of the third inning when Japan added six more runs and pitcher Pierangelo Ongaro performed mop up duty.

ITALY-JAPAN BOX SCORE

With the 18-0 loss to Japan, Team Italy (1-6) placed 10th in the 2022 U12 Baseball World Cup. Korea placed fifth, Mexico came in sixth, Japan took seventh place honors, Panama placed eighth, Czech Republic checked in ninth and South Africa placed 11th.

USA and Venezuela play in the U12 Baseball World Cup Championship final on Sunday, August 7, 2022 at 6 pm (local time). Host Chinese Taipei and Dominican Republic battle for the bronze at 2 pm (local time).

Team Italy U12 manager Stefano Burato said, "It was a difficult World Cup. It all started with injuries sustained at training in Anzio and Nettuno, and it continued here in Taiwan with a long quarantine. It lasted a few days longer than the other teams after positive Covid cases. We played with a downsized team below our expectations against excellent opponents. But we could have done better, especially against the Czech Republic. We will learn from our mistakes and strive to do what we can to improve." Forza #Italia!

by Roberto Angotti

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Photo of Japan scoring a run against Team Italy in the U12 Baseball World Cup courtesy of WBSC)