USA 9, Panama 3
Phoenix, AZ – Colorado Rockies prospect Ryan Shealy (Ft. Lauderdale,
FL) went 4-for-4 with two doubles, a home run and three RBI and Jarrod
Saltalamacchia (Braves/West Palm Beach, FL) added a pair of solo homers
as the United States (4-0) remained the only unbeaten team with a 9-3
victory over Panama (1-3) Friday at HoHoKam Park, in the 2005 CONCEBE
Regional Olympic Qualifying Tournament.
"I was seeing the ball extremely well today, and had a great batting
practice" said Saltalamacchia, who is now batting .875 for the
tournament. "It doesn't matter where you bat in this lineup, you're
going to see a lot of good pitches to hit."
"We definitely will be ready for Canada tomorrow," said Team USA
manager Davey Johnson. "Our goal all along has been to go undefeated,
and we're one win away from doing that."
Panama touched American starter Steven White (Yankees/League City, TX)
for a run in the second. Avelino Asprilla's rbi-single scored Jaime
Jaen as Panama took a brief 1-0 lead. But Team USA immediately erased
that deficit in the bottom half when Shealy led off with a double, and
came around to score on a Bryan LaHair (Mariners/Worcester, MA) base
hit. After LaHair stole second, Travis Hanson (Cardinals/Port Orchard,
WA) singled up the middle to give Team USA a 2-1 advantage.
But in the third, Panama tied it 2-2 on a sacrifice fly by Carlos Munoz
that plated Earl Agnoly. Shealy broke the tie again on a hit that
scored Brad Snyder (Indians/Bellevue, OH), and the Americans took
control off Panamanian starter Jose Nieto (0-1).
Nieto was relieved by Donald Julio with two outs in the fourth after
allowing a triple by Shane Victorino (Phillies/Las Vegas, NV). Julio
was greeted by a Howie Kendrick (Angels/Callahan, FL) line drive up the
middle that plated Team USA's fifth run.
White (1-0) worked 5.0 innings to gain credit for the victory, as he
limited Panama to two runs on six hits while walking two and fanning
five. Nick Ungs (Marlins/Dyersville, IA) allowed one run in 2.2 stanzas
of relief, while Jonah Bayliss (Royals/Williamstown, MA) got the final
four outs of the game.
Team USA (4-0) wraps up the event on Saturday when they face Canada
(3-1) in a 1:05 pm MT tilt at Maryvale. Bill Murphy
(Diamondbacks/Phoenix, AZ) gets the call for the Americans.