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Blu Boys suffer sluggish start

The national men’s softball team struggled early, absorbing a pair of setbacks in the XVII WBSC Men’s Softball World Cup at the Rosedale Park in Auckland on Sunday.

The Blu Boys bowed to the United States, 0-1, before suffering a 0-6 loss to Argentina to post a 0-2 record in Group A of the preliminaries of this prestigious world tourney.

Argentina took a 3-0 lead at the bottom of the fourth inning when Alan Peker hit a home run to deep center field that also sent Lucio Retamar and Gonzalo Ojeda, who were positioned at the first and second bases, respectively, back to the home plate.

Ladislao Malarczuk, Huemmul Mata and Federico Eder added three more runs at the bottom of the sixth inning to deal the Filipinos a disappointing setback.

Prior to surrendering to the Argentinians, the top team in the WSBC world ranking, the Blu Boys were whipped by the Americans in their opening match.

Blaine Milheim was the lone batter for the world No. 7 Americans to complete a run to the home plate at the bottom of the third inning to hand the Filipinos their first loss.

The Philippines, which made it to this tourney following an impressive runner-up finish in the 11th Men’s Softball Asia Cup in Japan in September, will be facing world No. 9 Cuba in a bid to advance to the Super Round.

The Filipinos have qualified in the World Cup nine times with their best finish — fourth place — coming in 1968.

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