For a season preview of the Pittsburgh Pirates two Dominican Summer League teams, check out our article here. Throughout the year, we will provide the recaps of both teams, as well as highlight one player each day.
Result: Pirates 5, Mets2 0
Starting Pitcher: Ramon Rodriguez, RHP (2.02) – 4.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 0 HR
Top Hitter: Julio de la Cruz, DH (.202) – 1-for-4, HR, 2 RBI
Other Notable Performers:
Tito Polo, CF (.301) – 1-for-3, BB
Marcus Beltrez, LHP (2-1, 1.90) – 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 0 HR
Johan De Jesus, SS (.140) – 0-for-2, BB
Game Notes: Starter Ramon Rodriguez threw four shutout innings on Thursday, continuing his strong season, which has seen him allow one earned run or less in seven of his eight starts. Three relievers followed Rodriguez, combining for five shutout innings. Marcus Beltrez picked up his second win. Julio de la Cruz hit his fourth homer of the season. They have all come in his last 11 games. Luis Benitez stole his 23rd base of the season. Both Benitez and de la Cruz scored two runs each. The Pirates have now won seven games in a row, pushing their record to 24-16, the second best record in their eight team division.
Result: Pirates 10, Rojos 4
Starting Pitcher: Jose Batista, LHP (1-0, 3.07) – 5.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 0 HR
Top Hitter: Edgar Figueroa, LF (.289) – 2-for-5, HR, RBI, BB, 2 SB
Other Notable Performers:
Carlos Munoz, 1B (.383) – 0-for-2
Michael de la Cruz, DH (.333) – 2-for-6, 2 RBI
Jhoan Herrera, 3B (.246) – 1-for-2, 2B, 2 BB
Jesus Paredes, LHP (3.78) – 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 0 HR
Yoel Gonzalez, C (.139) – DNP
Game Notes: The Pirates2 got strong starting pitching from 17-year-old Jose Batista and the offense exploded against the Rojos(Reds second team) in a 10-4 win. Batista picked up his first career win, allowing just one hit and an unearned run over his five innings. Edgar Figueroa hit his second homer of the year and stole two bases. Jhoan Herrera, Steven De La Mota and Figueroa each scored two runs apiece. Carlos Munoz went 0-for-2, but still leads the league with a .383 average. His 1.060 OPS also leads the league, as well as his .494 OBP, which is 13 points higher than teammate Michael de la Cruz, who is in second place.
Player Of The Day
Today’s player of the day is Gustavo Barrios, who scored the game winning run on a wild pitch in the 14th inning of Wednesday’s game. Barrios is a 19-year-old second baseman in his second season in the DSL. Most players in the DSL play more than one position during their time, but Barrios has played second base in all 79 games that he took the field. He hits righty and is on the small side at 5’10”, 157 pounds. Barrios was one of five players the Pirates signed out of Colombia last March. He had a strong average his rookie season, hitting .327 in 42 games, but he collected just four extra base hits and didn’t draw many walks. This year the average hasn’t come around yet. He’s hitting only .210 so far in 81 AB’s, though he has greatly improved his walks already in less time, going from 11 all of last year to 21 this season. Barrios has also hit four triples this year, tied for the most among all Pirates players. If he could continue to show a little more power, while raising his average closer to last year’s mark and maintaining his healthy walk rate, he could have a chance to move up in the system. Right now though, with that .210 average, his sophomore season is a bit disappointing.