On day four of the Cal Ripken Major 70 World Series, two International teams fought hard and left it all out on the field for their respective countries. It was evident from the first inning that this game was going to be an intense offensive showdown. This game consisted of two teams that have a heated rivalry and history between each other. During the 3:00 PM game, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic clashed on Chicago Stadium and it was a homerun derby. The winner will advance to International Championship bracket play while the loser will play in the consolation bracket. Both teams combined for a total of eight homeruns, Puerto Rico with three and the Dominican Republic with five. The Dominican Republic’s hot bats were too hot for Puerto Rico to handle and were victorious 15-5.
In the top of the first, Puerto Rico began the homerun show with a solo homerun by shortstop Nicholas Perez. In the bottom half of the inning, the Dominican Republic’s shortstop, Manuel Beltre Jr., responded with a two-run homerun over the right field fence. After one inning of play, the Dominican Republic was up 2-1.
It was Puerto Rico’s turn next. Leading off the inning, first baseman Chris Arroyo reached base safely by way of a single. Following Arroyo, Juan Ramos reached base by an error made by the Dominican Republic’s first baseman. Due up next, was Puerto Rico’s left fielder, Derek Rodriguez. Rodriguez added to the homerun total by clearing the bases with a three-run homerun. Puerto Rico regained the lead at 4-2.
In the bottom of the second, the Dominican Republic responded and tied the game by adding another homerun to the total. Starting pitcher, Andres Pichardo, connected with a two-runner over the center field fence. This brought the score to 4-4.
For both teams, the third inning was quiet and they were unable to score a run.
In the bottom of the fourth, Pichardo came around to bat again. With one runner on, Pichardo blasted his second homerun of the game, putting the Dominican Republic back on top 6-4. In the following inning, Puerto Rico inched their way back in the game. Bringing Puerto Rico within one, Perez struck again with another solo homerun.
In the bottom of the fifth, the game got very intense between the teams and fans. The Dominican Republic responded back with homeruns of their own. Fraylen Suriel added another homerun which brought the combined total up to seven. Suriel connected with a two-run bomb that brought the lead to 8-5 in favor of the Dominican Republic. Following Suriel, poor pitching and defense allowed two Dominican Republic’s players to reach base and a runner to score. Now, the lead was at 9-5. With two on and one out, Christian Garcia came up to bat. Bringing the combined total up to eight, Garcia connected with the final homerun of the game. Garcia cleared the bases with a three-run homerun which furthered the Dominican Republic’s lead to 12-5. Consecutive wild pitches thrown by Puerto Rico allowed the Dominican Republic to score three runs and win the game 15-5.
For Puerto Rico, Nicholas Perez was named player of the game. Perez went 2-2 with two homeruns and two RBIs. For the Dominican Republic, Andres Pichardo was named player of the game. Pichardo went 2-2 with two homeruns and four RBIs. On the mound, Pichardo struck out six.
Puerto Rico will face Nebraska in the first round of the consolation bracket Monday at 12:30 PM on Boston Field. In the first round of the International Championship bracket, the Dominican Republic looks to keep their hot bats going and will battle Mexico Tuesday night at 8:00 PM on Chicago Field.