Milledge, Gimenez, and LaRoche Homer; Ryan Hits For The Cycle

Sunday’s action for Pirates’ players and friends in the winter leagues.� The Arizona Fall League and the Mesa Solar Sox have the day off.

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

Tigres de Aragua� 20,� Leones del Caracas� 15 — No, they weren’t playing football.� That’s 35 runs on 38 hits, 17 walks, 10 strikeouts, 4 wild pitches, 2 hit batters, and 2 errors.� LF Lastings Milledge hit a solo homer in the 3rd.� Los Tigres broke the game open in the 4th, which included three homers — a solo homer by RF Alex Romero,� and back-to-back blasts by 1B Hector Gimenez (three runs) and 3B Marquez Smith.� Aragua added 3 more in the 5th and 2 in the 7th, then sent 11 batters to the plate to score 7 runs in the top of the 9th.� Caracas had one run in the bottom of the 2nd, then had a rally in the 6th, scoring 4 runs.� The added one more in the 7th,� Los Leones were trailing 20 – 6 going into the bottom of the 9th, and that’s when they had the biggest inning of the game.� Of the 13 batters who came to the plate, the first seven reached base safely, and after a few more singles and their only homer of the game, Caracas scored 9 runs in the bottom of the 9th.� Still not enough for the win, though.� Milledge went 3-for-5 with 4 runs scored and 2 RBI.� Gimenez was 2-for-5 with 2 runs scored and 3 RBI.� Former Altoona Curve and Indy Indian CF Jorge Cortes also went 2-for-5 with 2 runs scored and 3 RBI.� Another former Curve and Indian C Miguel Perez was the only member of the Aragua starting lineup who did not have a hit or a walk in the game.

Navegantes del Magallanes� 11,� Tiburones de La Guaira� 3� — Former Indy Indian LF Mike Ryan hit for the cycle, going 4-for-5 for Magallanes, who posted 18 total hits.� Ryan starter with a double in the bottom of the 1st.� Los Navegantes scored 7 runs in the 3rd inning, and Ryan contributed a 2-run homer and a single in that inning.� Then he got the hardest part, a triple (and an RBI) in the 5th, and scored moments later.

Bravos de Margarita� 6,� Cardenales de Lara� 4� — “Only” 22 hits in this game.� One belonged to 3B Andy LaRoche, who homered to lead off the 2nd inning and start Los Bravos’ scoring.� Three singles and a double added two more runs for Margarita in the 2nd.� Two singles, a sacrifice bunt, and a sacrifice fly gave them another run in the 4th.� LaRoche was intentionally walked in the 7th inning, when Margarita scored twice more.� Lara scored one run in each of four innings.� Justin Thomas took the mound in relief for Los Bravos in the 6th, with two Cardenales on base and two outs.� He gave up an RBI single, though that run was charged to the previous pitcher.� Thomas started the 7th inning with a strikeout, then a hit batter and a single.� He was relieved, but an RBI grounder brought in the first runner, and this run was charged to Thomas.

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LaRoche Homers In Venezuela

Friday’s winter league action for Pirates’ players and friends:

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

Bravos de Margarita� 3,� Cardinales de Lara� 0� — 3B Andy LaRoche got Los Bravos onto the scoreboard with a solo homer in the 4th inning — his first home run in the Venezuelan League.� LaRoche also walked in the 5th inning, when Margarita used two singles, two wild pitches, and another walk to score 2 more runs.� LaRoche also walked in the 7th inning, but didn’t score.� Lara was held to just 4 hits in the shutout.� Jhonathan Ramos pitched to three batters in the 7th inning — a double, a fielding error, and a strikeout.� Ronald Belisario pitched a perfect 9th inning to earn his 2nd save.

Tiburones de La Guaira� 7,� Tigres de Aragua� 4� — Los Tiburones scored 5 runs in the late innings to overcome Los Tigres.� Aragua scored 2 runs in the top of the 1st, when 3B Luis Maza led off with a double (the first of 3 hits for him in the game), 1B Hector Gimenez walked, and LF Lastings Milledge plated the first run with an RBI single.� Another single brought in Gimenez.� La Guaira tied the score with a 2-run homer in the 2nd inning.� A triple and a single gave Aragua the lead in the 4th, and a double, a throwing error and a single added a run in the 7th.� La Guaira scored 3 runs in the 6th and 2 more in the 8th.� Milledge and Gimenez both went 1-for-3 with a walk.� C Raul Chavez was hitless in 4 at-bats.

MEXICAN PACIFIC LEAGUE

Caneros de Los Mochis� 6,� Venados de Mazatlan� 3� — Los Caneros also scored 5 runs in the late innings, to overcome Los Venados.� Mazatlan scored their first run in the 2nd inning on a throwing error and a double by 1B Roberto Saucedo.� Saucedo drove in the second run in the 4th inning with a bases-loaded single.� Los Caneros got one run back in the bottom of the 4th, then scored 2 runs in the 6th inning with a home run.� 2B Freddy Sandoval homered for Los Venados in the 8th inning, to tie the score, but Los Caneros responded with another 2-run homer and another insurance run in the bottom of the inning.� LF Rogelios Noris singled in the 6th inning for his hometown Mazatlan, but was left on base.

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Pirates’ Pitchers Busy In Winter Leagues; Morton’s Debut

Wednesday’s winter league games with Pirates’ players and friends…

VENZUELAN LEAGUE

Bravos de Margarita� 6,� Leones del Caracas� 4 — Margarita starter Justin Thomas gave up 2 runs in the 2nd inning on a walk and a home run.� He zipped through the 3rd inning, then allowed a single and a walk in the 4th before being relieved, though both of those runners were left stranded.� Caracas scored 2 more runs in the 5th on three walks, a single, and an error.� Los Bravos had been scoreless for the first 4 innings, then exploded for 6 runs in the bottom of the 5th.� 3B Andy LaRoche followed a lead-off single with an RBI double.� Three consecutive walks by a new Caracas pitcher forced in LaRoche with the second run of the inning, leaving the bases loaded.� Another new Caracas pitcher was greeted by LF Frank Diaz’s grand slam, to give Margarita a 6-4 lead.� Former Pirate farmhand Ronald Belisario pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the 9th to earn the save.

Navegantes del Magallanes� 2,� Cardinales de Lara� 1 — Los Cardenales were held to just 4 hits in this game, while Los Navegantes posted 11 hits.� Magallanes scored their first run in the 3rd inning, on an RBI single by 1B Mark Trumbo (Angels).� Their starter Anthony Lerew (Royals) pitched 6 innings and allowed the 4 hits, one of which was a solo home run in the 6th inning, to tie the score and make Lerew ineligible for the win.� Corey Hamman came on in relief, and pitched a perfect 7th inning.� Jean Machi followed with a perfect 8th, and Yoel Hernandez retired the side in order in the 9th.� In the top of the 8th, DH Mike Ryan broke the tie with a solo home run, which became the game-winner.� That gave Hamman the win and Hernandez his 2nd save.� Ryan went 3-for-4 in the game, raising his batting average to .389.� SS Argenis Diaz went 1-for-4 for Magallanes.

Caribes de Anzoategui� 3,� Tigres de Aragua� 2� –� Brian Bass gave up 2 runs on 2 hits in his start for Los Tigres, and he was lucky that it wasn’t more runs, because he walked 5 batters.� He gave a free pass to 2 batters in each of the 1st and 2nd innings, and both times left them on base.� In the 3rd, he gave up a 2-out walk, and the next batter smacked a 2-run homer.� He gave up a single in the 5th, and was relieved after getting a ground out.� Aragua tied the game in the 5th inning when former Indy Indian LF Jorge Cortes walked, then a hit batter and a ground out pushed Cortes to third.� he scored on an RBI single.� The score remained tied until the bottom of the 10th, when Los Caribes got a lead-off single.� Adenson Chourio came in as a pinch-runner, and he stole second base.� A walk-off double plated Chourio with the winning run.� 1B Hector Gimenez singled and walked twice for Los Tigres, and C Raul Chavez singled and walked, but neither scored.

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

Criollos de Caguas� 2,� Senadores de San Juan 1 — San Juan scored one run in the top of the 1st on a walk, a stolen base, an error, and an RBI ground out.� Then they had only 4 hits for the rest of the game.� Caguas tied the score in the 5th inning on a walk, a single, and an RBI single by former Indy Indian SS Luis Figueroa.� A solo home run by DH Omir Santos gave Los Criollos the winning run in the 7th inning.� Figueroa had 2 more hits in the game — a double to lead off the bottom of the 1st inning, and a single after the homer in the 7th.� 3B Ramon Vazquez singled twice in the game, in the 6th and the 8th innings.

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Hamman Earns A Save In Venezuela

A busy Sunday afternoon and evening in the winter leagues… the Arizona Fall League has the day off on Sundays.

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

Navegantes del Magallanes� 2,� Caribes de Anzoategui� 0� –� Corey Hamman earned his first save of the winter season for Magallanes.� Hamman entered the game in the top of the 8th, with pinch-runner Adenson Chourio on first and no outs.� He got a ground out to first to end the inning, then came back out in the 9th, w hen he worked around a lead-off walk for a scoreless inning.� Los Caribes were held to just 4 hits in the game, and Los Navegantes did not hit much better — only 5 hits.� Magallanes scored one run in the top of the 1st on a walk, a ground out by DH Mike Ryan which moved the runner over, and an RBI single.� A walk and a double brought in the run in the 5th.� Ryan also singled in the 8th, but was left on base.

Leones del Caracas� 14,� Tiburones de La Guaira� 5� — The Sharks were clawed up by the Tigers this afternoon, as every member of the Caracas lineup had at least one hit.� La Guaira scored 2 runs in the 3rd inning, but Caracas scored in each of the last 5 innings, including 4-run innings in the 8th and 9th.� C Carlos Maldonado singled in the 2nd inning, but did not factor into any of the late scoring.

Bravos de Margarita� 5,� Aguilas de Zulia� 0 — Los Bravos did all their scoring in the 7th (3 runs) and 8th (2 runs), and held Los Aguilas’ hitters to just 5 hits.� Andy LaRoche did not get into the game.

Tigres de Aragua� 5,� Cardinales de Lara� 3 — DH Raul Chavez, C Miguel Perez, and pinch-hitter Hector Gimenez all went hitless in the game, but Chavez was hit by a pitch and scored in the 2-run 1st inning for Aragua.� A walk and four singles gave Los Tigres 3 more runs in the 3rd.� Lara also had a walk and four singles, plus an Aragua throwing error, in the top of the 5th, when they also scored 3 runs.

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Gimenez and Ryan Continue Hitting But LaRoche Doesn’t

Cheering for the Pirates’ players and friends in winter league games:

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

Tigres de Aragua� 4,� Caribes de Anzoategui� 2 — Former Pirate farmhand Miguel Perez smacked a pinch-hit double in the bottom of the 8th after a single and a walk, driving in two runs to break a 2-2 tie and give Aragua the win.� Los Caribes scored a run in each of the first two innings — a triple and a sacrifice fly in the 1st, and three singles in the 2nd.� Los Tigres fought back with a solo home run by 2B Ramon Castro in the 5th.� The 7th began with back-to-back singles, the second by C Hector Gimenez. A sacrifice bunt by DH Raul Chavez moved both runners into scoring position, and an intentional walk loaded the bases.� Castro singled to drive in the tying run.

Aguilas de Zulia� 2,� Bravos de Margarita� 1� — Los Bravos were held to just 3 hits, and two of them came in the 5th, when they scored their only run.� RF Rene Reyes led off with a single, and 3B Andy LaRoche advanced him to second base with a ground out.� Reyes moved to third on a fly out, then scored on a wild pitch.� C Henry Blanco also singled in the inning.� LaRoche reached on a throwing error in the 2nd inning and was left on base, and flied out in the 7th, and was removed for a defensive substitute in the 8th.� His average is now .091.� Zulia scored their 2 runs in the 6th, on a walk, a single, and a 2-run double.� With two outs onad a runner on third, lefty Jhonathan Ramos came on in relief.� Ramos ended the inning with a ground out, then pitched the 7th inning.� He gave up a single, but his catcher Blanco threw out the runner trying to steal second base.

Leones de Caracas� 2,� Navegantes del Magallanes� 1 — A pitching duel ended with a run on two hits in the bottom of the 10th inning by Caracas.� Magallanes was held to just 4 hits, one by LF Mike Ryan, who then came around to score in the 4th.� Caracas posted only 6 hits, including one by C Carlos Maldonado.� They scored their first run in the 2nd inning.� SS Argenis Diaz was hitless in 4 trips to the plate for Magallanes.

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