Teams from all over the world set for JLWS Opening Day

By DAVE GORGON
For the Sunday Times

TAYLOR – Four games between teams from all over the world are set for Aug. 12 – Opening Day – as the 38th Junior League Baseball World Series commences at Heritage Park, 12111 Pardee Road.

The international tournament features 12 teams of ball players ages 13 and 14. The JLWS is the “older brother” of the more famous Little League World Series for 12-year-olds that is played in South Williamsport, Pa.

The games in Taylor are open to the public. Admission is $5 per carload per game or $15 for a week’s pass. Both prices include parking.

Sunday’s Schedule

• 11 a.m. Manhattan Beach, Calif. (USA West regional champion) vs. the Elk-McKean Little League in Pennsylvania (USA East)
• 2 p.m. Reynosa, Tamaulipas (Mexico national champion) vs. Santa Cruz, Aruba (Latin America champion)
• 5 p.m. Chicago, Ill. (USA Central) vs. Lufkin, Texas (USA Southwest)
• 8 p.m. Emilia Romagna, Italy (Europe/Africa champion) vs. Sydney, New South Wales (Australia national champion).

Four of the 12 teams get an opening-day bye, including the defending world champion and returning Asia-Pacific regional winner Taoyuan, Chinese Taipei. Others are Canadian national champion Mirabel, Quebec; USA Southeast regional champion Elberton, Ga.;  and the Michigan District 5 champion, Brownstown Township, which won a tournament and will play as the “host team.”

Four games will be played daily Sunday through Wednesday at World Series Field on the grounds of the Taylor South Little League. Two games are scheduled for Thursday.

The tournament is played in a “modified double-elimination” format. Teams continue in pool play until they lose twice and four teams are left. Two teams play for the International championship game at 3 p.m. Aug. 18, followed by the USA title game at 6 p.m.

The world championship game is set for noon Aug. 19.

Games will be broadcast via streaming video on the website www.ustream.tv/channel/jlws. The world championship game will be broadcast on ESPN2.

The 12 teams in the series are the most in JLWS history. All of the teams arrive as champions, having won regional or national tournaments, or, in Brownstown’s case, a district title.

Once teams lose for the second time, they will play in consolation crossover games with American players interacting with International players. The games are scheduled as needed.

For more information about the World Series, go to www.cityoftaylor.com/worldseries.

The JLWS has an active Facebook page, www.facebook.com/juniorleagueworldseries. The World Series’ Instagram page is active during World Series week. Search jlws_taylor.

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