Mexico knocks KMC out of contention in Little League World Series
Stars and Stripes August 25, 2009
SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. — The Kaiserslautern Military Community players don’t care that they’re 0-2 and out of contention in the Little League World Series. Watching themselves on television is a treat that isn’t getting old.
KMC fell 13-0 in four innings to Reynosa, Mexico, on Monday at Volunteer Stadium, a defeat that the players might see as many as three times. That’s the same number of times they watched their 16-0 opening loss to Taoyuan, Taiwan.
"I expected them to play better today, but they’re having fun. This is awesome," KMC manager Ed Prince said. "They like to watch themselves on TV. They watched that first one on ESPN 360 and then watched the Mexico-Canada game again and pointed out new stuff."
KMC recorded its first hit of the Series on Monday when Cody Prince singled to left in the second inning. Pinch-hitter Michael Bega became the team’s third baserunner this week in the fourth inning when he walked off Mexico starter Oscar Noguera.
Mexico, which advanced out of Pool D with Taiwan, rapped out 12 hits in the victory off KMC starter Matt Zembraski and reliever Chris Holba. Ed Prince said he had to remind his players not to throw too many curveballs during the Mexico rallies.
"They’re young, and they know what works and what doesn’t," said Prince. "Throw the fastball and try to locate it. Their arms are young and they don’t need to throw that many curves as it is."
Prince also hoped for a better defensive effort. His team committed seven errors Monday to boost his team’s total to 13 officially, but he said his own scorebook had 15.
"That’s a lot, but we can’t win when we’re not hitting," Prince said. "I think Taipei was very good, and they’ll be tough to beat for anybody. And if the Mexico team that showed up against us does the rest of the week, they’re tough. Either that, or we’re not that good, and I don’t think that’s true."
KMC will play its final pool play game at 2 p.m. EDT Tuesday at Volunteer Stadium vs. Vancouver, B.C., which has also lost twice. Ed Prince said the team will stay the duration of the Series after that and play some pickup games, hopefully vs. the team of United States kids from the Middle East Africa region entry of Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. That team is composed primarily of Aramco Oil Co. employees’ children.
"Everyone here wants to take in the whole experience," said Prince.
Ben Brigandi is sports editor of the Williamsport (Pa.) Sun-Gazette.