Thanks to a three-race rally in the ninth inning against the Dominican team’s closer, Jairo Asencio, the Japanese left the Dominican team on the ground and began their search for Olympic gold with an important victory.
Dominican Republic played eight and a half innings of the highest World Cup level to be defeated in the bottom of the ninth inning, thanks to an implosion of the closer Jairo Asencio and to the will of a Japanese team that never gave up.
With a score of four runs to three, the Japanese began their way to Olympic gold in baseball, while the Dominicans were surprised and missed a game that was practically in their hands.
The match was dominated from the start by the two starting pitchers, who controlled opposing offenses for most of the game. On the side of Dominican Republic, Christopher Mercedes threw six three-hit innings, an earned run allowed, three walks and seven strikeouts, while the Japanese, Yoshinobu YamamotoHe also worked six innings, allowing two hits, transferring and striking out nine Dominican batters.
The first touchdowns of the game came in the seventh inning. With Juan Francisco Y Erick Mejia in base, the receiver Charlie valerio dispatched a two-run RBI double to place Dominican Republic ahead on the scoreboard. Japan responded at the bottom of the same inning with a touchdown courtesy of a Munetaka Murakami.
The Dominicans would add another run in the top of the ninth inning with a double of Gustavo Nunez, which led to the plate Erick Mejia and from then on, everything was a disaster for the Caribbeans. The closer Jairo Asencio He entered with a two-round lead to work, taking the first out without a hitch. He then received four consecutive hits that allowed the game to be tied, at which point the manager Hector Borg decided to take it out of the game to bring the reliever Jhan Mariñez, who allowed the hit that would end up giving victory to Japan.
Dominican Republic left eight runners on base, despite shooting eight hits, while the Japanese left a total of nine.