HAARLEM, Netherlands – Cuba won its 5th gold medal at the 2012 Haarlem Baseball Week by defeating Puerto Rico in the final. Cuba entered the medal round as the #3 seed and took down the top two seeds en route to the title.
Cuba 5, USA 3 (10)
Cuba defeated the USA in the first semifinal to advance to the final. Cuba had to come from behind scoring 3 runs in the top of the 8th to tie the game and send it to extra innings. In the first extra inning game of the tournament, Cuba used the international tie-breaker rules to score two runs to advance.
Puerto Rico 1, Netherlands 0
Puerto Rico continued to roll and the Netherlands continued to be shutout. After scoring 18 runs against Japan, the Dutch team went 27 innings without scoring a run. David Bergman pitched brilliantly for the Dutch but they couldn’t get anything offensively losing by a single run.
3rd Place Game – USA 4, Netherlands 3
American starter Marco Gonzales pitched great going 8 innings allowing only 1 run on 6 hits while striking out 9 to pick up the win. David Berg struggled as the Dutch team made a comeback in the 9th inning scoring 2 runs. Dan Child came in to shut the door on the Dutch rally to earn the save.
Gonzales finished the tournament 2-0 with a 1.13 ERA in 16 innings of work. He struck out 19.
Kyle Farmer (1-for-3) drove in a pair of runs for the USA, and picked up 2 hits driving in a run as well.
The USA finishes with the bronze medal.
Championship Game - Cuba 4, Puerto Rico 2
Puerto Rico entered the game undefeated in the tournament, but couldn’t overcome a late inning throwing error by third baseman Jorge Jimenez that allowed a run to score in the bottom of the 8th in a 2-2 game. Cuba followed up the error with a RBI single to take a 2-run lead into the 9th inning
Norberto Gonzalez picked up the win with 5.1 innings of relief allowing only 1 hit. Benigno Cepeda took the loss pitching 3.1 innings of relief allowing 2 hits and 2 unearned runs for Puerto Rico.
Frederich Cepeda had a nice day at the plate for Cuba going 2-for-3 with 2 runs scored and a solo home run. Rusney Castillo also pitched in with 2 hits and a RBI.
The win was Cuba’s 5th gold medal. Puerto Rico earned the silver marking its first medal of the tournament.