In Kingsbridge Little League’s second playoff game on July 8, the Yankees annihilated the Mariners. They emerged from the game winning 17-5 to secure their title as league champions. The game was the second of a best-of-three championship series, both of which were won by the Yankees.
The Mariners went up to bat first, with 13-year-old Alex Diaz pitching for the Yanks, who started the game off with a strikeout. A double was followed by the second out, off a pop fly, which was then followed by another double, hit by Rafael Reyes, 11. Andrew Aragones, also 11, ran home on the hit. A passed ball, followed by an error at third, allowed Reyes to score the team’s second run before the inning ended with another strikeout.
The bottom of the inning began with a fly ball for the Yankees, but two walks and a single loaded the bases. The next play ended in disaster for the Mariners; four errors in one play allowed the Yankees to rack up four runs as Angel Rivera, 12, Gabriel Riollano, 11, pitcher Diaz, and batter Derrick Morel, 13, made their way home.
Jhana Dordille, 11, then hit a single, stole second, and advanced to third on a passed ball, before heading home on a hit by Sebastian Villavizar, 11, making the score 5-2. Villavizar managed to score the team’s sixth point after yet another error at third base gave him the opportunity to run home, the score now 6-2.
The Yankees shut down the Mariners in the second inning with another immediate strikeout by Diaz. Xamiti Arias, 11, got on base and moved to second on a passed ball. Arias moved to third, while the next batter was called out at first. A stunning catch by Dordille in deep center field ended the top of the inning.
The Yankees made enormous leaps in the second inning. After a single, a struck batter and two passed balls, a runner was on third with one out. Another walk put runners on second and third, and a double by Morel saw Riollano score a run. Dordille hit another double, running in Diaz. Villavizar hit a third double, and Dordille and Morel ran home on the play.
The Yankees now leading 10-2 with a man on second, Mariner pitcher Brandon Fernandez, who had pitched 1 strikeout, subbed out for Kenneth Alejo, both age 11. The next two batters took a base, one after being struck, the other being walked. Villavizar and Carols Rivera, age 12, scored off a double by 12-year-old Yeremy Zapata. Then, Zapata and Daniel Munoz both came home on a hit by 12-year-old Angel Rivera.
A walk, a passed ball and a single by Dordille sent Rivera home, and although the team loaded the bases again, a final out at first ended the torment for the Mariners, the score 15-2.
Alejo scored for the Mariners during the third inning off a hit by 11-year-old Matthew Puello, but the team could not gain back any ground during the inning as Carlos Rivera scored a run off a hit by Angel Rivera, and Angel subsequently scored on a hit by Riollano, making the score 17-3.
With the league’s mercy rule threatening the end of the game, the Mariners had only one more inning to close the score gap. Johnathan Auson, 12, and Arias scored on hits by Alejo and Josue Valdez, 11, respectively, resulting in the final score of 17-5. Both of the mentioned batters were called out at first, and Diaz struck out a batter for the last out of the game for a total of 6 strikeouts for the Yanks this game.