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US falls to Mexico in Premier12, must win vs. DR

(USA Baseball)
@SlangsOnSports
November 4, 2019

Team USA lost to Team Mexico, 8-2, in its second game of the Premier 12 tournament and will face the Dominican Republic in a must-win game Monday night. Bobby Dalbec, the Red Sox’s No. 2 prospect, hit a game-tying solo homer in the bottom of the fourth after 10-year big

Team USA lost to Team Mexico, 8-2, in its second game of the Premier 12 tournament and will face the Dominican Republic in a must-win game Monday night.

Bobby Dalbec, the Red Sox’s No. 2 prospect, hit a game-tying solo homer in the bottom of the fourth after 10-year big league vet Erik Kratz hit a solo shot to cut Team Mexico's lead to 2-1 in the third, but Mexico broke the game open with a five-run eighth inning, highlighted by a three-run homer by catcher Ali Solis.

Dalbec's homer was his second in as many games at the tournament, as he hit a grand slam in the United States' 9-0 win over the Netherlands on Saturday. Dalbec slugged 27 homers across Double-A and Triple-A in 2019 in the Red Sox organization.

Team USA, which is ranked No. 2 in the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Baseball World Rankings, will play its final group stage game on Monday night, with A's No. 24 prospect Parker Dunshee making the start against No. 12 Dominican Republic, which is also currently 1-1 in the group. The winner of that game will advance, along with No. 6 Mexico, which improved to 2-0 with its win over Team USA.

Red Sox No. 5 prospect Tanner Houck started for Team USA and allowed three runs (two earned) in 4 1/3 innings while striking out six. Royals 2017 third-round pick Daniel Tillo relieved Houck with two on and one out in the fifth and struck out the next two batters, but the go-ahead run scored on a passed ball with two outs. Tillo struck out three across 1 2/3 perfect frames, as U.S. hurlers fanned 15 batters in the game.

Braves left-hander Caleb Thielbar worked a scoreless seventh before allowing the first two batters to reach in the eighth. Brewers right-hander J.P. Feyereisen took over for Thielbar and allowed a two-run single to Efren Navarro, followed by Solis' three-run dinger. Solis is a former Major Leaguer who had brief stints on the rosters of the Padres and Rays.

Angels top prospect Jo Adell, MLB's No. 5 overall prospect, was 1-for-4, while Andrew Vaughn, ranked 21st overall, and the third overall pick in the 2019 MLB Draft by the White Sox, added a hit as well.

The Premier 12 tournament is an Olympic qualifier, offering the best team from the Americas and the best team from Asia a spot at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. In this round, nations are part of four-team groups that will play each other once, at which point the top two in each of the four groups qualifies for the Super Round, to be played in Tokyo.

Sarah Langs is a reporter/editor for MLB.com based in New York. Follow her on Twitter @SlangsOnSports.