Winter League Playoffs 1/8 — Navarro’s First Homer
Checking in on Pirates’ players and friends in Sunday’s winter league action
Tiburones de La Guaira 9, Caribes de Anzoategui 1
Los Caribes were held to just 5 hits, and with 4 walks, they bounced into 5 double plays. That limited their run-scoring, and in fact their only run came in on a double play, in the 3rd inning. CF Gorkys Hernandez went 0-for-4 for Los Caribes. Exicardo Cayones came in to pinch hit in the 7th inning, but was out in a double play. He remained in the game as the DH, and he bounced into a double play in his only at-bat. Los Tiburones scored all their runs in the first three innings, including 3 runs in the 2nd, and 5 in the 3rd.
Navegantes del Magallanes 5, Aguilas del Zulia 1
Cesar Valdez made the start for Los Aguilas and threw 8 shut-out innings, scattering 5 hits and 2 walks over those frames. He struck out 5 batters. Valdez had one inning in which he loaded the bases with a single and two walks, but a strikeout and a double play got him out of the jam. Double plays also erased hits in two other innings. Los Aguilas scored a run in the bottom of the 2nd, when C Carlos Maldonado doubled, moved to third on a single, and then scored on a double play. But when Valdez was relieved to begin the top of the 9th, everything fell apart. His reliever gave up two walks and a single to load the bases. The tying run scored on a wild pitch. An intentional walk and two singles added two runs, then a walk forced in a run and a hit batter forced in the 5th run of the inning. Jean Machi came on to pitch for Los Navegantes in the bottom of the 9th. With two outs, he loaded the bases with Aguilas, on two walks and a single. A strikeout ended the inning for Machi.
Tigres del Licey 4, Leones del Escogido 3
Each team scored one run in the 1st and one in the 4th. Los Leones began with a homer in the 1st, and a bases-loaded RBI grounder in the 4th. Los Tigres scored on three straight singles in the 1st, with DH Ronny Paulino picking up the RBI. SS Yamaico Navarro contributed a solo homer in the 4th. Paulino gave Licey the lead with a solo homer to begin the 6th. Two singles, one by Navarro, followed the homer, and a walk loaded the bases for Los Tigres. The runner from third scored on a grounder double play, giving Los Tigres a 4-2 lead. A double and a single gave Los Leones another run in the 8th, but they got no further.
Aguilas Cibaenas 3, Gigantes del Cibao 2
Los Aguilas thwarted Los Gigantes’ attempt at a come-from-behind win. Los Aguilas took the lead with a run in the 4th on a double by RF Brandon Moss and a sacrifice fly. Moss also provided their second run, with a solo homer in the 6th. Los Gigantes tied the score in the top of the 7th, when C Robinzon Diaz singled, then scored on a double with a throwing error by Moss. Another single brought in the tying run. Los Aguilas came right back in the bottom of the 7th. 2B Pedro Ciriaco led off with a single, advanced to third on another single, then scored the go-ahead run on the third single of the inning. Moss also singled in the 2nd inning, and Diaz singled again in the 8th.