The United States Futures team broke out the bats on Sunday against the World Futures squad in the 2012 All-Star Futures Game at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., by a score of 17-5.
There wasn't much pitching in this one, as the two teams combined for 22 runs and 29 hits in a barn-burner of a game.
Things were looking bright for the World Futures when the Bernie Williams-managed team managed to jump out to a 4-0 lead at the top of the third.
George Brett's team battled back to tie the score in the home half of the inning thanks to a two-run triple by Cincinnati Reds prospect Billy Hamilton, followed by a throwing error and RBI grounder. The Americans tacked on two more in the bottom of the fourth on a Tommy Joseph (San Francisco) two-run double to make it 6-4 U.S.
In the sixth, the World Futures closed the gap to one on an Oswaldo Arcia (Minnesota) double, but that was as close as they would get.
The bottom half of the sixth saw an offensive onslaught from the U.S. lineup. Thirteen men came to bat, scoring nine runs to push the lead to 15-5. Manny Machado (Baltimore) had a two-run double, Mike Olt (Texas) and Jonathan Singleton (Houston) each drove in a run and Nick Castellanos, rising star of the Tigers system, put an exclamation point on the inning with a three-run bomb to center field.
Royals Triple-A outfielder Wil Myers drove in his third run of the day on a seventh-inning single, then scored on an error by second baseman Chih Fang Pan (Oakland) to give his team a 17-5 lead and cap the scoring for the day.
Boston Red Sox prospect Matt Barnes got Pan to ground out to second to clinch the win for the U.S. Futures.
Watch Toronto Blue Jays prospect Anthony Gose (Toronto) rob Oscar Tavares (St. Louis) in the top of the third:
Grades for Key U.S. Players
Wil Myers: A
Myers went 2-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored in the three hole for the U.S. Futures. He had a game-tying RBI groundout in the third, an RBI sac-fly in the sixth, and a run-scoring seventh-inning single.
Jonathan Singleton: A-
Singleton, a first baseman in the Houston Astros system, went 3-for-4 with two runs and an RBI for the George Brett-led club.
Three singles from your five-hole hitter is nothing to turn your nose up at. His plate discipline sparked his team's fourth-inning rally when he walked to lead off the frame and later came home on Hamilton's three-bagger.
Grades for Key World Players
Jurickson Profar: B+
Jurickson Profar, Rangers prospect from the Curacao, led the game off with a home run to right to get the World Futures started, and finished 2-for-3 on the day.
The world team couldn't get much going offensively after the first few innings, but Profar's leadoff bomb appeared as though it would set the tone for the rest of the game.
Jae-Hoon Ha: B+
One of the bright spots in the Chicago Cubs farm system, the Korean native was also a bright spot for the internationals at Kaufman.
Jae-Hoon Ha went 2-for-2 with two RBI and a run scored. He hit a two-run homer to right field in the bottom of the second to extend the World Futures' lead to 3-0, then would later single to pad his stats. Unfortunately, Ha's homer wasn't anywhere near enough to change the game's outcome.
Deciding Factor: Bottom of the Sixth Inning
This wasn't too tough of a decision, as the U.S. Futures outscored their opponents 9-1 in the sixth frame to take a commanding 15-5 lead.
Ariel Pena was the perpetrator on the mound. The Los Angeles Angels prospect gave up eight runs on seven hits and one out. The Dominican's ERA for the game was a bloated 216.00.
All hopes of a comeback were effectively squashed by the American side's crippling nine-run outburst.
Game MVP: Nick Castellanos
The Detroit Tigers prospect was named MVP after posting a stat line of 3-for-4, three RBI, three runs and a walk.
Castellanos hit a three-run dinger in the sixth inning off of Julio Rodriguez to put the final three runs of the inning on the board for his team and led all hitters with six total bases.
The festivities in Kansas City continue all week, as the 2012 State Farm Home Run Derby is scheduled for Monday night.
Both rosters head back to their respective clubs to finish out the minor league year or wait for a call-up later in the season to The Show.