Another tough loss for the Austrian U-23 National team. An impressive start brought a 7:0 lead against the U-21 European Champion of 2014, but Austria lost the lead in a black-out inning, allowing eight runs and losing the momentum completely. Austria wasn`t able to recover and was snapped 14:7.
Today, Austria started off great against its neighboring country, the Czech Republic. With a lead-off double by Jan Alteneder, the #33 of the world put a lot of pressure on the defense. Felix Zimmerle could move the runner to third and who else, but Ferdinand Obed, would drive in the first run. But a single run wasn´t enough for the hungry Austrians. Hackl, Seiser, Proksch and Seidl each hit balls through the infield scoring a total of four runs for the team. The highest lead in a World Cup game for the team ever.
Team captain Fabian Hirnschal started on the mound for his home country, but struggled with the first batter. He came right back, forcing a ground ball back to him and to turn two. The offense in red and white again put pressure on. Felix Zimmerle got on base quickly and advanced through a balk. Ferdi Obed again did his job and scored the run. Also Claus Seiser could drive another ball and put the sixth run on the board.
After an out, Hirnschal allowed the first hit in the second. He quickly recovered and struck out the next two batters. The third inning already seemed to be over for Austria, after Amin Many tried to stretch a double into a triple, but was tagged out inches in front of the bag. With two outs Austria was able to put another portion of pressure on the Czech. With runners on first and second, Mr. RBI, Ferdi Obed, hit another ball to left field and scored the 7:0 for Austria.
The Czech hitters started to adapt to Hirnschal. A drive down the left field was cut off by Richard Alzinger who threw a rocket to second to catch the runner. An infield hit followed, but the defense behind Hirnschal stayed strong and got out of the inning easily. After Czech made a pitching change, bringing up Tomas Ondra, Austria had difficulties to keep the pace of the first innings.
In the fourth inning, Czech was able to score for the first time. After Ferdi Obed dropped a line drive to right, the first run scored. With a hit-by-pitch, Hirnschal loaded up the bases for Michal Zyma. The Czech first base man took a long swing and hit the ball over the right field fence for a grand slam homerun. But this wasn´t enough. Another three hits followed, to load up the bases again, still just one out. A hit-by-pitch scored the sixth run in the inning, a fielder´s choice tied the game in the fourth and a sac fly the 8:7. Within one inning, Czech scored eight runs and turned the game around.
After Austria went down in order, Czech started of the fifth with two hits and soon had runners on first and third. Hirnschal was still on the mound and gave up another single that was prolonged by an error and scored another run. Moritz Scheicher now came to the mound. Although he could strike out the first batter, two wild pitches scored another two runs and pushed the score to 12:7.
Scheicher and Duenas combined for a scoreless sixth and Austria was back in the offense. Seiser once again singled, but Schütz and Jäger, who were put in the game the inning before, and Many were struck out in order. The team didn´t look as confident as after the first three innings. Duenas had another solid inning before Adrian Bleyer took over in the eight. His inning started with a hit batsman and an error, that could have brought in two outs. A sac fly scored another run for the Czech. Since Bleyer had troubles with the strike zone, Lambauer came as the fifth reliever in the game and could force a ground out to get out of the inning, with a new score of 14:7. In their last chance to score, they had two more hits, but no more runs, to take the loss against the Czech Republic.
The Austrian squad lost its groove after the third, when an eight-run inning turned the game around. The new comer of the U-23 Baseball World Cup 2016 couldn´t recover and didn´t score a single run after the black-out. For the team, so far the biggest chance to win its first game was snapped.
Tomorrow, Austria will have another opportunity against the U-23 selection of South Africa. The game will start at 1:45 PM local time. Tomorrow, the WBSC Live Stream will be up and running again.
OCT 28, Cadereyta Stadium, 10 AM, Australia vs. Austria – 8:1
OCT 29, Cadereyta Stadium, 10 AM, Austria vs. Argentina – 3:13
OCT 30, Cadereyta Stadium, 10 AM, Nicaragua vs. Austria – 15:0
OCT 31, Saltillo Stadium, 6 PM, Austria vs. Japan – 0:16
NOV 1, Monterrey Stadium, 6PM, Austria vs. Chinese Taipei - 0:3
NOV 3, Cadereyta Stadium, 10 AM, Czech Republic vs. Austria – 14:7
NOV 4, Cadereyta Stadium, 1:45 PM, Austria vs. South Africa –
NOV 5, Cadereyta Stadium, 1:45 PM, Venezuela vs. Austria –
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