Friday’s winter league action featuring Pirates’ players and friends:
Bravos de Margarita 11, Cardenales de Lara 1
3B Neil Walker started the scoring for Los Bravos, with his second homer of the winter season, a solo blast over the left field wall to begin the 2nd inning. Two singles, a wild pitch, an RBI grounder, and a home run by CF Frank Diaz gave Margarita another 3 runs in the 5th inning. Walker led off the 6th inning with a line drive double into left. He scored on another double, and two more singles added two more runs, and Margarita had a 7-1 lead. A walk, two singles, and a 3-run homer by 1B Dennys Abreu in the 7th inning added 4 more runs to Margarita’s total. LF Jonel Pacheco went 0-for-3, with a sacrifice bunt, and he also reached base on a throwing error. Former Indy Indian Michael Tejera earned his second win with 6 innings of work, allowing only one run on a double and a single in the 4th inning.
Tigres de Aragua 7, Leones del Caracas 2
SS Ronny Cedenomade his winter league debut for Aragua with a home run to lead off the 4th inning. After the homer, a fielding error and two singles, one by DH Raul Chavez loaded the bases for Los Tigres, and a walk forced in the second run of the inning and tied the score at 2-2. Aragua added 5 more runs in the 5th inning, on back-to-back homers: a grand slam by Raul Chavez, followed by a solo blast by 1B Hector Gimenez. Cedeno had singled in the inning and scored with the grand slam.
Navegantes del Magallanes 13, Tiburones de La Guaira 5
Magallanes recorded 18 hits and took advantage of 6 errors by Los Tiburones, though they committed 3 errors of their own. SS Argenis Diaz did not have one of the 18 hits, but he walked, and reached base on a throwing error when he dropped down a sacrifice bunt. LF Mike Ryan did not have a hit, but he also reached on an error. 2B Jorge Velandia entered the game when La Guaira’s starting second baseman left the game in the 2nd inning (not sure if it was due to an injury or something else). He had a walk in three trips to the plate.
MEXICAN PACIFIC LEAGUE
Venados de Mazatlan 8, Tomateros de Culiacan 7 (10 innings)
CF Ruben Rivera’s 2-run homer in the top of the 10th broke a 6-6 tie for Mazatlan. Los Venados still had to hold off Los Tomateros in the bottom of the inning, though. DH Luis Cruz led off the bottom of the frame with a single. Cruz was forced out at second on a grounder to short. Two wild pitches put the remaining base runner on third base. An RBI single brought that runner home, and another single put Tomateros on the corners with two outs. A pop up to 2B Brian Bixler ended the game and preserved the win for Mazatlan.
Culiacan had scored first, with a homer in the 1st inning. Mazatlan’s 3B Freddy Sandoval had tied it up with a home run in the 4th inning. Los Venados took the lead with 4 runs in the 5th inning. Three singles, including one by LF Rogelios Noris brought in one run. Brian Bixler loaded the bases when he was hit by a pitch. Another single scored two runs, including Noris, and Sandoval’s RBI single brought in Bixler, giving Mazatlan a 5-1 lead. Culiacan made it 5-4 with three runs in the bottom of the 5th. Bixler led off the 7th with a single, and scored after another single and an RBI ground out. Culiacan came back with 2 runs on a walk and three singles in the second half of the inning, to tie the score at 6-6 and set up the showdown in the 10th.
Estrellas de Oriente 5, Leones de Escogido 3
Los Estrellas did most of their damage in the 7th inning, when they led off the inning with three consecutive singles, including one by C Robinzon Diaz. LF Nelson Teilon followed the singles with a grand slam. They added one more run in the 8th inning on a walk and two singles. Diaz went 1-for-4 at the plate. 2B Pedro Lopez was hitless in 3 trips to the plate.
Scottsdale Scorpions 5, Mesa Solar Sox 5
tied after 11 innings
Friday evening’s game between the Scorpions and the Solar Sox was declared a tie after 11 innings. The Scorpions were the last to score, with a run in the bottom of the 6th innings, and neither team could push a run across over the next 5 innings.
The Solar Sox got the scoring started in the 3rd inning. Scottsdale starter Joe Martinez (Giants) had begun with two scoreless innings, but got into trouble in the 3rd. Three of the first four batters in the inning singled, with one run scoring. After another out, Martinez gave up a 3-run home run to 1B Chris Parmelee (Twins). He walked the next two batters after the homer, and was relieved by Cesar Valdez (Diamondbacks).
CF Jose Tabata put the first Scorpions’ run on the board in the bottom of the 3rd inning. His two-out double was followed by an RBI single by RF Cole Gillespie (D’backs), and Mesa’s lead was cut to 4-1. The Scorpions tied the score in the bottom of the 4th inning. With one out, C Buster Posey (Giants) singled and LF Steve Susdorf (Phillies) walked. 3B Darin Holcomb (Rockies) brought both of them in with a 2-RBI double, and he went on to third base on a throwing error. 2B Pedro Ciriaco’s (D’backs) sacrifice fly scored Holcomb, tying the score at 4-4.
Mesa took the lead again in the 5th inning, on a home run by C Hank Conger (Angels). Buster Posey countered with his solo homer in the bottom of the 6th, and that was the end of the scoring for the rest of the game.
Tony Watson took over on the mound for Cesar Valdez, who had given up the homer in the 5th. Watson gave up a walk in the 6th, and retired the side in order in the 7th inning. He threw 33 pitches, 19 for strikes. Danny Moskos relieved Watson and began the 8th inning with a single, a wild pitch, and a walk. After a visit from the pitching coach, Moskos settled down and retired the next three batters. He walked the first batter he faced in the 9th inning, but promptly picked him off first base. Moskos gave up another single, but after another coaching visit, he ended the inning with a fly out. Moskos threw 38 pitches, with 22 strikes. Michael Schwimer (Phillies) replaced Moskos to pitch the final two scoreless innings, allowing two walks.
After Posey’s homer, the Scorpions did not record another hit in the game. Jose Tabata reached base in the 7th on a fielding error, but was erased with a double play. 1B Brandon Allen (D’backs) walked in the 8th, and he was also erased with another double play. Both Tabata and Allen walked in the 10th inning, and Steve Susdorf walked in the 11th, and they were all left standing on base when the inning ended.