<
>

Mexico boots Puerto Rico from LLWS

8/24/2010

SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- The Valentin family has
accomplished a rare baseball double play.

One month, two world series.

Less than two weeks after former major leaguer Jose Valentin,
Jr., helped coach a team of 15- and 16-year-olds from Puerto Rico
to the Pony Baseball Colt World Series title in Indiana, his
father, Jose Sr., coached a team of 11 to 13-year-olds at perhaps
the most well-known tournament in youth sports -- the Little League
World Series.

The elder Valentin didn't have as much luck after Manati, Puerto
Rico lost to Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, 4-2, Monday.

The loss didn't spoil his enthusiasm for being in South
Williamsport. Not only were Jose Jr., and another son and major
leaguer, Javier Valentin, watching in the stands, but Valentin also
coached three grandsons at the Little League World Series.

"I want to come back again to Williamsport -- soon," he said
through interpreter Antonio Gonzalez.

In other early games Monday, Kaoshiung, Taiwan routed Vancouver,
British Columbia 23-0; and Ramstein Air Force Base, Germany beat
Plymouth, Minn., 2-1.

Rain delayed the Puerto Rico-Mexico game 70 minutes. The
Ohio-Georgia game postponed Monday night will be restarted and
played Tuesday at 4 p.m. The Connecticut-Washington game scheduled
for Monday night will be played at 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Games originally scheduled for 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. Tuesday were
pushed to Wednesday.

Puerto Rico had a sloppy exit from the series after committing
seven errors. The go-ahead run by Mexico's Aaron Juarez scored in
the fifth after catcher Victor Valentin, one of the skipper's
grandsons, mishandled a throw to the plate with the bases loaded.

"With seven errors, no team is going to win," the manager
said.

Eduardo Mata struck out 11 and pitched a five-hitter for Mexico.
He said he was pumped after watching Juarez hustle home, motivation
he used to strike out Joshuan Sandoval to the end the game.

"That's what we needed, the motivation from that run," Mata
said through interpreter Sergio Guzman. "Each one of us kept
saying to ourselves, 'We're going to win. We're going to win.' "

Jose Valentin, Jr., said father and son didn't have a friendly
wager on winning a world series. The younger Valentin coached
Gurabo, Puerto Rico and his 16-year-old son, Jesmuel, to the Colt
World Series.

Another son, Yomar, is on the Little League team. Victor and
another player, Javier Rodriguez, are Yomar's cousins.

"For me if it doesn't happen, to me they're still world
champions," Valentin, Jr., said. "I know this competition isn't
easy."

Chinese Taipei 23, Canada 0, 4 innings, 10-run rule

Shao-Fei Huang drove in six runs and Hsun Hao Shih hit two long
homers for Taiwan, which scored six runs in the first.

Huang has four doubles in the series, tying a record set by two
Taiwan players in 1995. The 23 runs is the third most in a game by
one team since 1992. Three Taiwan pitchers combined on a
one-hitter, allowing just Matthew Reyes' first-inning single.

Germany 2, Minnesota 1

Kyle Foley scored the go-ahead run after reaching base on an
overturned call to lift Ramstein Air Force Base, Germany, past
Plymouth, Minn., in a Little League World Series consolation
game Monday.

Foley was initially called out on a play at first in the fifth.
Replay officials reversed the call after manager Gary Harrington
challenged in a new wrinkle this year for the World Series replay
system. He eventually scored on a passed ball.

The Germany team, made up mainly of children of U.S. military or
base workers, was serenaded off the field to the theme from the
movie "Top Gun."

Notes

Hall of Famer Dave Winfield greeted Little Leaguers and
threw out the first pitch before the eventually-cancelled
Ohio-Georgia game. Asked about the indictment of Roger Clemens last
week on federal charges that he lied to Congress in 2008 about
being injected with human growth hormone and steroids, Winfield
said, "If he's as adament as he is, he didn't use drugs. If he
did, it will be ugly." Winfield, now and ESPN analyst, appeared on
behalf of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. He said that
while he tells young players to stay off performance enhancing
drugs, there wasn't enough media attention about "guys doing the
right thing. ... I tell them, there are a lot of good guys out
there, just focus on them."