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 3, Marlins 1
Starting Pitcher: Ramon Rodriguez, RHP (2.27) – 3.2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K, 0 HR
Top Hitter: Reggie Cerda, C (.238) – 2-for-4, 2 RBI
Other Notable Performers:
Tito Polo, CF (.318) – 1-for-4
Julio de la Cruz, DH (.200) – 1-for-4, 3B, RBI
Adderly Ceballo, RHP (2-0, 0.82) – 3.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 0 HR
Johan De Jesus, SS (.160) – 0-for-3
Game Notes: Starter Ramon Rodriguez only lasted 3.2 innings due to his high pitch count. He was still able to strikeout a season high seven batters. Since walking two batters in his first start of the year without recording a strikeout, Rodriguez has pitched 27.1 innings, walking none and picking up 22 strikeouts. Relief pitcher Adderly Ceballo picked up his second win. In five appearances this year, he has pitched 11 innings, allowing one earned run, walking two batters and striking out just one hitter. Closer Carlos Ruiz saved his third game of the season, matching his total from last year. Julio de la Cruz hit his first career triple and drove in his 20th run of the season. First baseman Dennis Hurtarte returned to the lineup for the first time in two weeks. He was spiked while covering first base and needed multiple stitches, causing him to miss ten games. Luis Benitez had two hits, scored two runs and stole his 17th base of the year.
Result: Pirates 6, Mets1 5
Starting Pitcher: Jose Batista, LHP (3.70) – 4.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 5 BB, 3 K, 0 HR
Top Hitter: Michael de la Cruz, CF (.333) – 2-for-3, 2 BB
Other Notable Performers:
Jhoan Herrera, 3B (.241) – 0-for-2, BB, RBI
Christopher De Leon, RHP (2-1, 3.00) – 2.1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 0 HR
Yoel Gonzalez, C (.159) – 2-for-4, 2B
Carlos Munoz, 1B (.402) – 1-for-3, 2B, RBI, BB
Game Notes: Top prospect Michael de la Cruz reached base today four times collecting two singles and two walks. It was the third straight game that he has reached base four times. In 29 games this year, he has collected 33 hits and drawn 33 walks. Starter Jose Batista gave up just one run through 4.2 innings, failing to stick around long enough for the win due to his high pitch count. It was the second time that the 17-year-old lefty walked five batters in a game this year. Christopher De Leon picked up the win and Horelbin Ramos notched his second save. Left fielder Edgar Figueroa drove in his 20th run of the season. Carlos Munoz leads the entire DSL with a .402 average, .500 OBP and 1.070 OPS.
Player Of The Day
Last season, the Pirates added a 17-year-old catcher to their DSL team, Dominican born Reggie Cerda. He ended up catching 19 games for the Pirates2, the seventh highest total among Pirates catchers between both teams. He was used sparingly, with some of those appearances off the bench. In 24 total games last year, he had just 53 plate appearances. Cerda had one of the lower caught stealing rates, throwing out 5 of 19 attempted base stealers. This year, he is seeing more time behind the plate and teams are running often against him. In 14 games, 38 stolen bases have been attempted against him and he has thrown out only seven of those players.
Cerda’s bat was decent for a young first year player last year. He hit .260 and struck out just three times. This season, his average right now sits at .238, but in two of the last three games, he has had the best game on offense for Pirates hitters. He drove in two runs in Friday’s 3-1 win and was hitting in the cleanup spot. Cerda seems to have some work to do, both on offense and defense, but the increased playing time and the fact he is still just 18-years-old, are both positive signs for the future.