Cedeno Joins In, Machi Earns Save #3

Cheering for the Pirates’ players and friends in winter league action on Thursday…

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

Tigres de Aragua� 6,� Bravos de Margarita� 0� — Los Bravos were held to just 2 hits — a single in the 7th, and another to lead off the 9th inning.� 3B Andy LaRoche worked a walk to open the 2nd inning, but was erased in a double play.� Margarita got another walk in the 4th inning, and those were the only two Bravos batters to reach base in the first six innings.� Los Tigres scored their first run in the 1st inning, on a double, a single by SS Ronny Cedeno (in his Tigres’ debut), a fielders’ choce by CF Lastings Milledge, and an RBI single.� They added 2 more runs in the 4th, on a 2-run homer.� C Raul Chavez doubled after the homer, and Hector Gimenez reached on a fielder’s choice, but Chavez was out at third.� Cedeno also doubled in the 5th, then had the second single of the 7th inning.� Milledge moved Cedeno up to second base on a ground out, and an intentional walk loaded the bases.� A sacrifice fly plated the first run of the inning.� Chavez and Gimenez each drove in a run with an RBI single.� Jorge Cortes made a pinch-hitting appearance for Los Tigres and worked a walk in the 8th, but was left on base.

Navegantes del Magallanes� 3,� Tiburones de La Guaira� 1� — Los Tiburones put up half of their 6 hits in the 4th inning, when they scored their only run — back-to-back doubles and a single to begin the inning.� Los Navegantes scored one run in the 1st inning on a fielding error, a stolen base, and a double.� After Los Tiburones tied the score in the top of the 4th, Magallanes came back in the bottom of the frame to take the lead with a single, a walk, a wild pitch, and a 2-RBI single.� DH Mike Ryan was hitless in 4 trips to the plate for Magallanes.� Jean Machi pitched the top of the 9th for Magallanes and gave up a walk but struck out 2 batters to keep Los Tiburones from scoring.� Machi earned his 3rd save of the winter league season.

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Roster Moves and Winter Leagues: Rough Night For Morton And Hamman

A few roster moves by the Pirates today:

Several players have been removed from the 40-man roster and outrighted to AAA Indianapolis:� LHP Justin Thomas, RHP Sean Gallagher, RHP Steven Jackson, 1B Jeff Clement, and OF Brandon Moss.

Of these, Thomas, Jackson, and Moss are now all free to declare themselves minor league free agents.� Clement does not have enough service time to get to be a free agent, so he’s “stuck” on the Indianapolis roster.� He’s had knee surgery, and hopes to be ready by spring training.� Gallagher does have the service time, but the Pirates are probably negotiating with him to try to keep him.

LHP Wil Ledezma has signed a one-year contract with the Pirates for 2011.

RHP Jose Ascanio and 1B Steve Pearce (who has also had knee issues) are officially off the DL and back on the 40-man roster.� RHP Ross Ohlendorf also falls into this category.

On to Wednesday’s winter league action, with Pirates’ players and friends:

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

Senadores de San Juan� 4,� Gigantes de Carolina� 3� — San Juan rallied from a 3-1 deficit to score one run in the 5th and 2 runs in the 6th for the win.� Los Gigantes scored one run in the 4th on a double and a single.� They added 2 runs in the 5th, on two singles, an error, a walk, and a sacrifice fly.� Benji Gonzalez made a pinch-hitting appearance for Los Gigantes in the 8th inning, but flied out.� He remained in the game at third base for the final inning.

Criollos de Caguas� 4,� Indios de Mayaguez� 0� — 3B Ramon Vazquez and SS Luis Figueroa each had one hit for Los Criollos in their win.� Vazquez’s single in the 5th drove in one of Los Criollos’ runs.� They also scored 2 runs in the 4th on two singles and two errors, and another run in the 6th on two singles and a sacrifice fly.

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A Touch Of Winter (Leagues)

Cheering for Pirates’ players and friends in the winter leagues on Tuesday…

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

Criollos de Caguas� 8,� Senadores de San Juan� 2� — Former Indy Indian SS Luis Figueroa was just a homer away from hitting for the cycle, with 3 of Los Criollos’ 15 hits.� 3B Ramon Vazquez also had a hit for Caguas.� Figueroa doubled in the 1st inning but was left on base.� He singled in the 3rd and scored on an RBI double in the 4-run 3rd inning, then he tripled a run in and scored in the 2-run 4th inning.� Caguas also scored one run in the 2nd and the 8th innings.

DOMINICAN LEAGUE

Toros del Este� 6,� Tigres del Licey� 4� — Los Toros posted a pair of 3-run innings to take the win.� They scored on three walks and two doubles in the 4th inning, and on two walks and three singles in the 5th, complicated by a throwing error by Los Tigres’ C Robinzon Diaz.� Diaz had one hit for Licey, a single in the 8th inning, after a solo home run.� 1B Jake Fox also had one single for Los Tigres, but did not score.

Aguilas Cibaenas� 8,� Leones del Escogido�� 7� — Another hit-fest, with Los Aguilas recording 12 hits and Los Leones piling up 17.� LF Starling Marte had one hit for Los Aguilas, a single to load the bases in the 5th.� A strikeout ended that inning without a run scoring.� He also reached base on fielding error in the 2nd inning, which allowed a run to score.� Los Aguilas’ biggest inning was the 3rd, when DH Eric Patterson hit a grand slam.� Luke Carlin came into the game to catch for Los Aguilas in the 9th inning, but did not get a plate appearance.� Los Aguilas scored again in the 4th and 6th innings, and had an 8-2 lead going into the bottom of the 7th.� Los Leones scored 3 runs in the 7th, plus one more in each of the 8th and 9th innings, but still came up short.

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

Cardenales de Lara� 5,� Navegantes del Magallanes� 4� — Three runs in the bottom of the 8th inning gave Lara the win.� A walk and two singles brought in the first two runs, to tie the game.� Jean Machi came on in relief for Los Navegantes, and he was able to prevent a run from scoring by fielding a come-backer and firing it back to the plate, to make the out at the plate. But a passed ball allowed the next runner on third base to score the go-ahead run.� Magallanes had scored 3 runs in the top of the 1st on a walk and three doubles, including a double by 1B Mike Ryan.� A home run added another run in the 6th.�� SS Argenis Diaz singled in the 2nd inning and walked to lead off the 7th inning for Magallanes, but did not score.� Former Pirate Romulo Sanchez pitched 1.2 innings for Lara.� He entered the game in the top of the 6th after the home run, with one runner on base and no outs.� He got a double play, then gave up a single before ending the inning with a ground out.� He walked Diaz and gave up a single in the 7th inning.

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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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Noris Homers, MIlledge Hitting Well

Saturday’s winter league action for the Pirates’ players and friends.� The Puerto Rican League had their Ponce/Caguas game postponed.

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

Bravos de Margarita� 11,� Cardenales de Lara� 1� — Despite 10 hits, Los Cardenales were able to score just one run, which came in the 3rd inning.� Los Bravos piled up 12 hits and 11 runs, with two big innings.� Margarita began with one run in the 1st, then added another in the 2nd.� With all of the hits Lara was collecting, the Margarita starter, Will Savage, was relieved in the 5th inning, with one on and one out.� Jhonathan Ramos came in for Savage, and ended the inning by getting a double play.� He only pitched to one batter, but with the Bravos’ rally in the bottom of the inning, Ramos was awarded his second win of the season.� Margarita scored 4 runs in the 5th.� 3B Andy LaRoche singled and stole second base in the inning, then scored on a later RBI single.� LaRoche also walked in the 7th, and scored on another RBI single, for the first run of what would be a 5-run inning.

Navegantes del Magallanes� 6,� Tigres de Aragua� 3� — LF Lastings Milledge singled twice and walked once for Aragua, but it wasn’t enough for a win.� Milledge led off the bottom of the 4th with a single, and a fielding error, a single, and a grounder force out gave Aragua 2 runs, for a 3-1 lead.� Milledge also singled to lead off the 6th and stole second base, but was left on base when Corey Hamman came on in relief for Magallanes and struck out the only batter he faced.� Another pitcher relieved Hamman and ended the inning with Milledge still on third base.� Milledge also reached third base in the 8th, when he walked, and advanced to third on a single.� Magallanes scored 3 runs in the 6th inning, then two more in the 7th, to take the lead and the win.� Jean Machi earned his 2nd win for Magallanes when he struck out the side (all swinging) in the 9th inning. � LF Mike Ryan went 0-for-4 for Magallanes.� C Hector Gimenez went 0-for-4 for Aragua.

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