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2019 WSBC Premier12 Schedule And Scores

The 2019 Premier12 is underway, with teams from across the world attempting to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Two Olympic bids are up for grabs at Premier12. The highest finisher from the Americas will earn one Olympic spot, and the highest finisher from Asia/Oceania (excluding Japan) will earn another. 

The six-team Olympic field is already one-third complete. Japan earned an automatic berth as the host nation, and Israel earned a berth after winning the Africa/Europe qualifier.

The opening round is being played at three different sites across the globe. Group A is opening in Guadalajara, Mexico; Group B is in Taichung and Taoyuan City, Taiwan; and Group C is in Seoul, South Korea. The top two finishers from each group will advance to the six-team Super Round in Tokyo. The top two teams from the Super Round will play for the gold medal in Tokyo on Nov. 17.

    Opening Round (Round Robin)    
Group A (In Mexico) Date Matchup Local Eastern
Dominican Republic Nov. 2 United States 9, Netherlands 0 12 p.m. 1 p.m.
Mexico Nov. 2 Mexico 6, Dominican Republic 1 (6 innings) 7 p.m. 8 p.m.
Netherlands Nov. 3 Dominican Republic 14, Netherlands 4 (7) Noon 1 p.m.
United States Nov. 3 Mexico 8, USA 2 7 p.m. 8 p.m.
  Nov. 4 USA 10, Dominican Republic 8 7 p.m. 8 p.m.
  Nov. 5 Mexico 10, Netherlands 2 7 p.m. 8 p.m.
Group B (In Taiwan) Date Matchup Local Eastern
Japan Nov. 5 Japan 8, Venezuela 4 6 p.m. 5 a.m.
Puerto Rico Nov. 5 Taiwan 6, Puerto Rico 1 6:30 p.m. 5:30 a.m.
Taiwan Nov. 6 Japan 4, Puerto Rico 0 6 p.m. 5 a.m.
Venezuela Nov. 6 Taiwan 3, Venezuela 0 6:30 p.m. 5:30 a.m.
  Nov. 7 Venezuela 7, Puerto Rico 1 Noon 11 p.m. (Wed)
  Nov. 8 Japan 8, Taiwan 1 6:30 p.m. 5:30 a.m.
Group C (In South Korea) Date Matchup Local Eastern
Australia Nov. 6 Canada 3, Cuba 0 Noon 10 p.m. (Tue)
Canada Nov. 6 South Korea 5, Australia 0 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
Cuba Nov. 7 Cuba 3, Australia 2 (10 innings) Noon 10 p.m. (Wed.)
South Korea Nov. 7 South Korea 3, Canada 1 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
  Nov. 8 Australia 3, Canada 1 Noon 10 p.m. (Thu)
  Nov. 8 South Korea 7, Cuba 0 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
    Super Round (Round Robin)    
Playoff Round (In Japan) Date Matchup Local Time Eastern
Mexico Nov. 11 Mexico 2, Taiwan 0 Noon 10 p.m. (Sun)
United States Nov. 11 Japan 3, Australia 2 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
Japan Nov. 11 South Korea 5, USA 1 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
Taiwan Nov. 12 Mexico 3, Australia 0 Noon 10 p.m. (Mon)
South Korea Nov. 12 South Korea 7, Taiwan 0 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
Australia Nov. 12 USA 4, Japan 3 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
  Nov. 13 Australia 2, USA 1 Noon 10 p.m. (Tue)
  Nov. 13 Japan 3, Mexico 1 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
  Nov. 15 USA 3, Taiwan 2 Noon 10 p.m. (Thur)
  Nov. 15 South Korea 7, Mexico 3 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
  Nov. 16 Taiwan 5, Australia 1 Noon 10 p.m. (Fri)
  Nov. 16 Japan 10, South Korea 8 7 p.m. 5 a.m.
Finals (In Japan)   Championship Round (single elimination)    
  Nov. 17 Bronze Medal Game: Mexico 3, USA 2 (10) Noon 10 p.m. (Sat)
  Nov. 17 Gold Medal Game: Japan 5, South Korea 3 6 p.m. 4 a.m.



Sunday, Nov. 17

What Happened: Japan beat South Korea 5-3 in the gold medal game to win the Premier12 championship. South Korea scored three runs in the first inning on a two-run homer by Ha Seong Kim and a solo homer by Hyun-Soo Kim, but Japan quickly erased the deficit. Tournament MVP Seiya Suzuki delivered an RBI double in the bottom of the first to cut the deficit to 3-1, and Tetsuto Yamada put Japan ahead for good with a three-run homer in the second. Hideto Asamura added an insurance run with an RBI single in the seventh.

What It Means: The victory adds another feather in Japan's cap. It solidified its ranking as the No. 1 team in the world with the win and avenged a loss to South Korea in the semifinals of the 2015 Premier12. Japan and South Korea already had spots in the 2020 Olympics clinched, so the victory was solely a matter of pride.

All-Tournament Team: C: Erik Kratz (USA); 1B: Bobby Dalbec (USA); 2B: Ryosuke Kikuchi (Japan); SS: Ha-Seong Kim (South Korea); 3B: Wei-Chen Wang (Taiwan); OF: Jung-Hoo Lee (South Korea); OF: Jonathan Jones (Mexico); OF: Seiya Suzuki (Japan); DH: Brent Rooker (USA); SP: Yi Chang (Taiwan); RP: Brandon Dickson (USA)

MVP: Seiya Suzuki, OF, Japan

Saturday, Nov. 16

What Happened: Mexico rallied to beat Team USA 3-2 in 10 innings in the bronze medal game. Matt Clark led off the ninth with a game-tying homer and Efren Navarro hit the walkoff RBI single in the bottom of the 10th.

What It Means: Mexico clinches a berth to the 2020 Olympics as the highest finishing team from the Americas in the tournament. Team USA will have to wait for the Americas qualifier next March for another chance to qualify for the Tokyo Games.


Japan 4-1
South Korea 3-2
Mexico 3-2
USA 2-3
Taiwan 2-3
Australia 1-4

*Records include head-to-head matchups from Opening Round.

Friday, Nov. 15

What Happened: Taiwan scored four runs in the bottom eighth inning—capped by a Che-Hsuan Lin three-run homer by—to pick up a 5-1 win over Australia. Tetsuto Yamada went 2 for 3 with two doubles and two RBI to lead Japan to a 10-8 win over South Korea in a preview of the gold medal game.

What It Means: Taiwan's win knocked Australia out of medal contention and elevated Team USA to the bronze medal game. Team USA will face Mexico, with the winner clinching an Olympic berth as the highest finishing team from the Americas.

Thursday, Nov. 14

What Happened: Brent Rooker hit the go-ahead two-run home run in the seventh inning to lift Team USA to a 3-2 win over Taiwan and keeps its Olympic qualifying hopes alive. South Korea, the reigning Olympic gold medalist, clinched a berth to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics with a 7-3 win over Mexico. 

What It Means: Team USA had to win its game and have Mexico lose theirs in order to keep its chances of qualifying for the Olympics through Premier12 alive. Now, Team USA needs Australia to lose to Taiwan tonight. tonight. If that happens, that would set up a U.S.-Mexico matchup in the bronze medal game, with the winner getting an Olympic bid. If Australia wins tonight, they move on to play Mexico in the bronze medal game and Team USA is eliminated.

Wednesday, Nov. 13

What Happened: Aaron Whitefield hit a two-run single off of Tanner Houck in the first inning, and that was all Australia needed for a 2-1 win over Team USA. Timothy Atherton stymied the U.S. for one hit over 5.1 scoreless innings, and Team USA failed to take advantage of Australia's bullpen by leaving the tying run on base in both the eighth and ninth innings. Mark Payton hit a solo home run in the eighth for Team USA's only run. Japan handed Mexico its first loss of the tournament with a 3-1 victory in the nightcap. Japan scored three runs in the first two innings on RBI singles by Seiya Suzuki, Kensuke Kondo and Hayato Sakamoto, and Shota Imanaga combined with three relievers on a one-hitter to make the early lead stand up.

What It Means: Team USA's hopes of qualifying for the Olympics through Premier12 are hanging by a thread after their loss to Australia, although Mexico's loss to Japan granted them a slight reprieve. Team USA is in last place in the Super Round standings and needs to win its finale against Taiwan and have Mexico lose its finale against South Korea to have any hope of a medal-round matchup between the two—which is currently Team USA's only path to finishing ahead of Mexico and earning the Olympic berth reserved for the tournament's top finisher from the Americas.

Tuesday, Nov. 12

What Happened: Team USA stunned top-ranked Japan, 4-3, to significantly bolster its Olympic qualifying hopes. Alec Bohm went 2-for-5 with a double, a run and an RBI, and Jo Adell went 2-for-3 with a home run as the U.S. never trailed. Taiwan upset South Korea, 7-0, in an upset of the other tournament favorite. Yi Chang pitched 6.2 scoreless innings, and Chun-Hsiu Chen hit a late three-run homer to punctuate the victory. Mexico was the only favorite to win, beating Australia 3-0. Jonathan Jones went 2-for-3 with a double and a home run to continue his scorching tournament, and Eduardo Vera combined with three relievers on a four-hit shutout.

What It Means: Team USA is back in the game with its win over Japan and Korea's loss to Taiwan. Mexico is 3-0 and guaranteed to finish higher than the U.S. in the Super Round (If they both finish with 3-2 records, Mexico would finish higher based on it head-to-head win over Team USA), but the U.S. now has a clearer path to play Mexico in the medal round, where a win would give it an Olympic berth. Team USA still has to take care of business in its final two games against Australia and Taiwan, and it needs Mexico to lose as many as possible, but the U.S's outlook is significantly rosier than it was 24 hours ago with its upset of Japan.

Monday, Nov. 11

What Happened: Team USA dropped its Super Round opener, 5-1, to South Korea. The U.S. managed 13 hits but scored only one run, stranding 14 men on base. Brent Rooker hit a solo home run in the sixth for Team USA's only run. Cody Ponce gave up five hits and three runs in 3.1 innings to take the loss. Mexico beat Taiwan, 2-0, on a combined three-hit shutout by Arturo Reyes and five relievers. Ali Solis homered to continue his big tournament showing. Japan rallied late to avoid an upset and beat Australia 3-2. Down 2-1 late in the game, Sosuke Genda's RBI fielder's choice in the seventh inning tied it, and Hideto Asamura drew a bases-loaded walk with two outs in the eighth for the go-ahead run.

What It Means: Team USA's back is against the wall. It is now two games behind Mexico in the Super Round standings with three to play. (The highest finishing team from the Americas clinches an automatic bid to the 2020 Olympics). Team USA no longer controls its own destiny. The best it can do is tie Mexico in the Super Round standings and hope to meet Mexico in the medal round, where a head-to-head win would send the U.S. to the Olympics. If Mexico goes to a higher-placing medal game, which it is currently in the position to do, it will get the Olympic berth.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this recap said Team USA would be eliminated with one more loss. While one more loss would prevent the U.S. from finishing higher than Mexico in the Super Round standings, the U.S. could still get the Olympic bid if it beats Mexico in a medal-round game.


Mexico* 3-0   Japan* 3-0   South Korea* 3-0
USA* 2-1   Taiwan* 2-1   Australia* 1-2
Dominican Republic 1-2   Venezuela 1-2   Canada 1-2
Netherlands 0-3   Puerto Rico 0-3   Cuba 1-2

Friday, Nov. 8

What Happened: Logan Wade hit tiebreaking two-run triple in the eighth inning to give Australia a 3-1 win over Canada and set off a wild chain of events. Canada, Australia and Cuba (which lost to South Korea 7-0 in the nightcap) all finished 1-2 in Pool C. Canada beat Cuba, Cuba beat Australia and Australia beat Canada, meaning the head-to-head results did not break the tie to see who would advance to the next round. As such, the second tiebreaker was a formula called Team's Quality Balance (TBQ). It is the sum of runs scored divided by the number of offensive innings, minus the number of runs allowed divided by the number of defensive innings. Australia finished with the highest TBQ of the three teams, pushing it into the next round.

What It Means: Canada and Cuba were eliminated from Olympic qualifying by the TBQ tiebreaker. South Korea and Australia are moving on to the Super Round.

Thursday, Nov. 7

What Happened: Seiya Suzuki went 3-for-4 with a double, a triple and four RBIs, and Japan won Group B with an 8-1 victory over Taiwan. Rockies prospect Luis Castro went 4-for-5 with two doubles and two RBIs to lead Venezuela to a 7-1 win over Puerto Rico and third place in the group. South Korea beat Canada 3-1 in a clash of Group C favorites. Kwang-Hyun Kim struck out five of the first six batters and took a no-hitter into the fifth. Cuba, meanwhile, kept its Olympic qualifying dreams alive with a 3-2 win over Australia in 10 innings. Yurisbel Gracial hit the walkoff sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 10th.

What It Means: Japan moves on to the Super Round as the top seed in Group B, giving it a potentially easier path to the finals. Taiwan will enter as Group B's runner-up. Group C remains unsettled heading into the final day of group play. South Korea, Canada and Cuba all remain alive for the final two spots in the Super Round. South Korea can punch its ticket with a win over Cuba, while Canada needs to beat Australia and then wait for the result of the Cuba-South Korea.

Wednesday, Nov. 6

What Happened: Seiya Suzuki hit a three-run home run to lead Japan to a 4-0 win over Puerto Rico and Yi Chang pitched seven scoreless innings to lead Taiwan to a 4-0 win over Puerto Rico. With the wins, Japan and Taiwan secured spots in the next round and eliminated Puerto Rico and Venezuela from Olympic qualifying.  Phillippe Aumont pitched eight shutout innings and Canada beat Cuba 3-0 in the Group C opener. Aumont gave up two hits, walked one and struck out nine. Scott Mathieson struck out the side in the ninth to finish off a combined two-hit shutout. Hyeon-Jeong Yang combined with three relievers on a one-hit shutout to lead South Korea to a 5-0 win over Australia in Group C's other contest.

What It Means: Puerto Rico and Venezuela were eliminated from Olympic qualifying contention, but their Olympic dreams aren't dead yet. They will get another chance to qualify at the Americas qualifier in Arizona in March 2020. Canada and South Korea, meanwhile, each need only one more win to move on to the next round after winning their openers.

Tuesday, Nov. 5

What Happened: Jonathan Jones went 3-for-5 and Mexico wrapped up group play with a 10-2 win over the Netherlands. Mexico finished 3-0 in Group A, followed by the United States at 2-1, the Dominican Republic at 1-2 and the Netherlands at 0-3. Japan opened Group B play with an 8-4 win over Venezuela, and Taiwan did the same with a 6-1 win over Puerto Rico.

What It Means: Mexico will receive favorable seeding in the next round by virtue of winning Group A, including avoiding a potential early date with Japan. Japan and Taiwan are now only one win away from advancing to the next round by virtue of their opening victories.

Monday, Nov. 4

What Happened: Team USA kept its Olympic qualifying dreams alive with a 10-8 win over the Dominican Republic. It now moves on to the Super Round in Japan as one of the final six teams in the field.

What It Means: The U.S. avoided a potentially embarrassing early exit from Premier12. Instead, it will head into the Super Round as the most rested team of the tournament. Mexico has another game Tuesday and Groups B and C have yet to even begin group play.

Sunday, Nov. 3

What Happened: Mexico scored five runs in the eighth inning to turn a close game into 8-2 rout of the United States. Efren Navarro hit a two-run single and Ali Solis followed with a three-run homer off of J.P. Feyereisen to break it open. Mexico never trailed, jumping on Team USA starter Tanner Houck for two runs in the top of the first inning and carrying a 3-2 lead into the eighth. Erik Kratz and Bobby Dalbec each homered for the United States. The Dominican Republic mercy-ruled the Netherlands in the afternoon game. Gilberto Celestino went 3-for-3 and finished a home run shy of the cycle while Carlos Peguero, Charlie Valerio and Jeison Guzman all homered. 

What It Means: Mexico clinched a spot in the Super Round and will be moving on. The United States, meanwhile, will face the Dominican Republic in a winner-take-all game Monday. The winner will advance to the Super Round, while the loser is eliminated from Premier12. The loser is not necessarily going to miss out on the Olympics, however. The losing team will have another chance to earn an Olympic berth through the Americas qualifier in Arizona next March. 

Saturday, Nov. 2

What HappenedDrew Waters homered on the first pitch of the bottom of the first inning and Team USA beat the Netherlands 9-0 in the Premier12 opener. Jo Adell added a solo home run in the third inning and Bobby Dalbec hit a grand slam in the fifth to turn it into a rout. Cody Ponce, a late addition to Team USA as an injury replacement for Connor Seabold, pitched five scoreless innings for the win. In the nightcap, Esteban Quiroz hit a grand slam in the third inning and Efren Navarro and Matt Clark hit back-to-back homers in the sixth to lead Mexico to a 6-1 win over the Netherlands. The game was called after six innings due to rain.

What It Means: Mexico and the U.S are already halfway to the Super Round by virtue of their opening victories. Two wins guarantees a top-two finish in the group and a berth into the next round. The Dominican Republic and Netherlands, on the other hand, have early holes to climb out of.

Simeon Wood Richardson (Dipace)266974

Team USA's Pool Play Finale Canceled Due To Rain, Lightning

Team USA led Puerto Rico, 6-1, in the fourth inning on Thursday when the game was canceled due to rain and lightning in the area.

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