Winter Leagues: Harold Ramirez is Off to a Strong Start in Colombia

In the Dominican on Saturday night, Alen Hanson went 2-for-3 with a walk and his third stolen base. It sounds like a good game, but he had an unusual amount of trouble on the bases. He was picked off after his first single. Hanson was caught stealing after the walk. After he singled in the tenth, he stole second base, then got tagged out going third base on a grounder to third when there wasn’t a force play. Despite the base running, Hanson has now got his average up to .300 through 21 games after a slow start. He is 9-for-21 in his last seven games.

Pedro Florimon started at shortstop and went 0-for-3 with a strikeout, before leaving for a pinch-hitter in the eight inning. Gustavo Nunez took over defensively at shortstop and ended up driving in the winning run in the tenth with a walk-off single. For Nunez, it was just his second hit this month. Florimon is hitting .174 through 12 games and has 20 strikeouts in 46 at-bats.

There was an interesting event in winter ball yesterday, as two Dominican league teams and two Venezuelan league teams played at Marlins Park, home of the Miami Marlins. The odd part was that the Dominican game was an exhibition, while the Venezuelan game was a regular season game. Mel Rojas Jr. went 0-for-4 and made the final out of the 4-2 loss. Willy Garcia was a defensive replacement in center field in the ninth inning and didn’t get to bat. Those stats don’t count towards the regular season totals. No Pirates saw action in the Venezuelan league game. On Sunday, they will play two exhibition games at Marlins Park, splitting up the teams so they play two games that involve a Dominican league team against a team from Venezuela.

In other action in Venezuela on Saturday night, Elias Diaz went 1-for-4 with his first double of the winter. He is hitting .250/.313/.393 through eight games.

Jose Osuna started in left field and went 1-for-5 with an RBI. He is starting to come back to Earth after a strong start, hitting .229 in his last ten games. Osuna is batting .333/.385/.465 in 36 games.

Junior Sosa went to right field as a defensive replacement in the fifth inning and went 1-for-2 with a double and an RBI.

Gorkys Hernandez went 0-for-3 with a walk. He is 2-for-22 in his last six games.

In Mexico, Carlos Munoz went 0-for-5 with a strikeout. He has a .305/.416/.514 slash line. As mentioned, the league in Mexico is high offense, but those numbers are still very strong, especially due to his age. He is fourth in on base percentage, seventh in slugging and fifth in OPS.

Felipe Gonzalez faced three batters and all three reached base. He gave up a hit, a walk and hit a batter. Two of the runners scored in a crazy inning. The two teams combined for 13 runs in the sixth inning and they used a total of eight pitchers.

In Australia, Sam Kennelly made his fourth start in a row at shortstop on Sunday and went 2-for-5 with a double. This is his fourth season in the ABL, but at 19 years old, he is still one of the youngest players in the league. Kennelly is hitting .194/.237/.222 in ten games.

The league in Colombia hasn’t been providing daily boxscores like they have in the past, so we have gone a few days since the last update. Harold Ramirez is hitting .333/.429/.423 in 21 at-bats. He has two doubles, three walks and five runs scored. In Mexico this winter, he hit .245/.268/.321 in 15 games before he was sent home due to poor performance. Ramirez was just added to the Pirates’ 40-man roster on Friday.

Tito Polo is 3-for-11 with two doubles and four runs scored. He led all Pirates’ minor leaguers with 46 steals during the regular season, but he is 0-for-2 in steals so far in Colombia.

UPDATE 11:15 AM: The exhibition game between Aguilas Cibaenas(Dominican) and Cardenales de Lara(Venezuela) will be televised live on MLB Network tonight at 7:30 pm. Willy Garcia, Jhondaniel Medina and Elvis Escobar could possibly play. Edwin Espinal is also on the Aguilas, but he wasn’t on the travel roster posted.




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Troy B

With Hanson’s bad baserunning skills , he will fit right in with the Bucs. 🙂 Do you think that if Walker is traded that Hanson is the guy at 2B coming out of spring training?


Yea Troy. The Pirates are a good baserunning organization. They just have a lot of bad days. 😉


Both Marte and Polanco are former TOOTBLAN winners I think.



I’m really not sure how you’d rank Hanson as a good base runner- is this compared to other minor leagues at his level, or just in general a good base runner, because just his stolen base % alone in the minors where pitchers aren’t focusing on holding runners on- is not good.


But trying to steal a base when you don’t get a good jump, a good read, or have the time down for the pitcher and catcher…..can absolutely be a mistake. So although getting caught CAN just be a good defensive play, it can also be a mistake for someone with his speed


Oh that’s my bad, I thought you were referring to minor leagues in general, not just the Pirates.


Thank you for the heads up on the game tonight on MLB network. I will be watching with the bye week.

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