Winter Leagues: Oneil Cruz Debuts in the Dominican

Saturday was busy in winter ball, thanks to a doubleheader for Sydney in the Australian league. Here’s a recap of the action for all Pittsburgh Pirates players who saw action yesterday. In case you missed it, here’s our weekly Winter League Report article, focused on Osvaldo Bido.

In Australia, Jase Bowen helped his team to victory in the first game of a doubleheader by going 2-for-3 with a run, RBI, walk and his third stolen base. He went 1-for-3 in the second game with a run scored. He’s hitting .320 with a .746 OPS in seven games.

Dylan Shockley went 2-for-4 in the first game, with a double, run scored and two RBIs. He was 0-for-2 with a walk in the second game. He’s hitting .200 with a .581 OPS in ten games.

Solomon Maguire went 1-for-4 with a run scored in the first game. He was 0-for-3 in the second game. He’s 5-for-21 with five singles and a walk in seven games.

Ernny Ordonez went 0-3 with a walk and a run scored in the first game. He was 1-for-3 in the second game. He’s hitting .263/.333/.316 in 11 games.

Sammy Siani went 0-for-3 with a walk and his second stolen base in the first game. He went 1-for-2 with a walk in game two. He’s hitting .290/.325/.447 in 11 games.

In the Dominican, it took a few weeks longer than expected, but Oneil Cruz finally worked out his deal with his winter team and was in the lineup as the DH yesterday. His first game was quiet, going 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.

Miguel Andujar went 3-for-4 with his second homer in two days. He also had two singles and a walk. He’s now hitting .357 average and a 1.043 OPS in seven games. Video of the home run is below.

Rodolfo Castro went 0-for-5 with an RBI, his fourth stolen base, and his sixth error. He’s now hitting .167 with a .542 OPS in 17 games.

In Colombia, Andres Alvarez went 2-for-4 with a single, double, two walks and three runs scored. He has a .390 average and an 1.163 OPS in 11 games.

Francisco Acuna went 2-for-3 with a double and a walk. He has a .167 average and a .545 OPS.

Cristian Charle went two innings, allowing one run on two hits, a walk and three strikeouts. He has a 7.94 ERA during the early stages of this winter.

Diego Chiquillo pitched a scoreless inning on one hit, one walk and one strikeout.

Rodolfo Nolasco went 2-for-4 with a grand slam, his third homer of the winter. Even though he hit the homer tonight, it actually counts as his first homer because this game was the completion of an earlier suspended game. He also had a single and scored a run in the first game of a doubleheader. He went 0-for-3 in the second game. He has a .231 average and an .867 OPS in 12 games.

In Mexico, Jared Oliva went 2-for-3 with two singles, two walks and an RBI. He has a .308 average and an .805 OPS in 36 games.

Fabricio Macias went 2-for-4 with two singles. He has a .252 average and a .647 OPS in 36 games.

Pitcher Denny Roman debuted earlier this month and it slipped by me. He has now pitched 4.2 shutout innings on one hit this winter.

In Venezuela, Ali Sanchez caught the final two innings and had a sacrifice fly in his only plate appearance. He’s hitting .220 with a .527 OPS in 23 games.

Miguel Andujar’s homer

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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My sense is that the Mexican League is about AA level. I am willing to be corrected. I am just trying to make sense of Oliva’s performance.


Thank you. So he might be in contention for an MLB job. He can play all three OF positions and can hit a bit. My sense, based on how the Bucs have handled him and what I have read, the Bucs hope that Swaggerty will claim CF. But his poor second half raises questions.


I don’t see Oliva or SwaggyT making the team any time soon…



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