DSL Prospect Watch: Michael De La Cruz Reaches Base Five Times In Win

For a season preview of the Pittsburgh Pirates two Dominican Summer League teams, check out our article here.  For a recap of the DSL All-Star game, check out our article here. Throughout the year, we will provide the recaps of both teams, as well as highlight one player each day. Pittsburgh_Pirates10

PIRATES1

Box Score

Result:  Mets2 6, Pirates 1

Starting Pitcher: Ramon Rodriguez, RHP (1-4, 2.52) – 5.0 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 1 HR

Top Hitter: Pablo Reyes, SS (.306) – 2-for-4, SB

Other Notable Performers:

Julio de la Cruz, 3B (.202) – 1-for-4, RBI

Adderly Ceballo, RHP (3.32) – 3.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 0 HR

Johan De Jesus, SS (.168) – DNP

Game Notes: The Pirates dropped both games to the Mets2 to open up their week, losing today by a 6-1 score. Starting pitcher Ramon Rodriguez had an unusually tough outing, giving up four runs over five innings and picking up his fourth loss. In his eight previous starts combined, Rodriguez had allowed a total of five earned runs. Pablo Reyes had two hits and scored the only run. Julio de la Cruz had the only RBI, his 30th of the season. The Pirates had six hits in the game, all singles. Their was only one walk in the entire game, which was drawn by first baseman Dennis Hurtarte. The Pirates1 have a 30-26 record, fourth best in their division. They trail the first place Rangers by 12.5 games.

PIRATES2

Box Score

Result: Pirates 9, Rojos 1

Starting Pitcher: Omar Basulto, LHP (2-3, 2.00) – 5.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Edgar Figueroa, RF (.281) – 3-for-5, 2 3B, 4 RBI, SB

Other Notable Performers:

Michael de la Cruz, CF (.326) – 3-for-3, 2B, 2 BB, SB

Jhoan Herrera, 3B (.236) – 0-for-5

Francis Rodriguez, RHP (4.32) – 3.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 0 HR

Yoel Gonzalez, C (.178) – 2-for-5, 2B

Game Notes: The Pirates got great starting pitching from Omar Basulto and their bats combined for 12 hits and seven walks, leading to a 9-1 win over the Rojos, the Reds second team. Basulto has been on a hot streak recently, allowing one earned run over his last six starts combined, a total of 28.2 innings. He has 30 strikeouts over that same time. Top prospect Michael de la Cruz reached base in all five plate appearances, collecting three hits and two walks. In 48 games, the 17-year-old center fielder has 56 hits and 48 walks. Edgar Figueroa had two triples and four RBI’s. He now has seven triples and 33 RBI’s this season, both totals lead the two Pirates affiliates. Yoel Gonzalez had two hits on Tuesday, giving him an eight game hitting streak.

Player Of The Day

In 2011, the Pirates sent an 18-year-old 6’3″ left-handed pitcher to the Venezuelan Summer League named Alexander Gutierrez. He saw plenty of time on the mound, but it came with horrible command issues. In eight starts and five relief appearances, he pitched 31.1 innings and allowed 33 walks. That huge walk total also came with just eight strikeouts. Gutierrez moved to the DSL in 2012 and pitched strictly in relief. He threw 18.1 innings over 14 appearances and gave up 18 runs and 18 walks. He was tough to hit, posting a .232 BAA and he had a decent 1.21 GO/AO ratio. While it wasn’t real good, his 5.4/9IP strikeout rate was still much better than his first season. This season Gutierrez has stuck with the relief role, throwing 11 innings over ten appearances. He has ten strikeouts and a .200 BAA, but with 17 walks, his free pass rate has been even worse than in the past. While you’d like to stick with a lefty with good size, it is unlikely he will be able to advance to the States with 68 walks in 60.2 innings. He still has one more season of eligibility left in the DSL.

John Dreker

Author: John Dreker

John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.

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  • Kevin_Young

    I’ve had enough of MDLC’s shenanigans.

  • wtm1613

    Any guess as to when and where MDLC will be promoted?

    • John Dreker

      He should be in Bradenton for the Instructional League at the end of September. It was said that he would be in the GCL this year by one industry expert, so it was a bit of a surprise that he even started in the DSL. Mid-season promotions from the DSL to GCL are rare, though the Pirates did two this year, catcher Tomas Morales and outfielder Henrry Rosario. I think those were done more out of need, rather than earned promotions.