Its championship week in the Winter Leagues and Santurce showed new life in Puerto Rico behind the pitching of Fernando Cruz. Down in Venezuela, it’s Jean Machi against Armando Rivero as Magallanes and Aragua squared off.
Meanwhile, it is time to say goodbye for the winter to Christian Villanueva, as his Obregon Yaquis were eliminated in Mexico.
With one more week to go before the Caribbean World Series, it is time for another Down on the Farm Report.
Note: Coverage of the Winter Leagues runs from Sunday to Saturday
Dominican Winter League
Estrellas de Oriente
Oriente was eliminated from the Dominican Winter League playoffs last Sunday with a 10-5 loss to Este. Spencer Patton was given the mop-up duty. Patton struck out a batter in a perfect eighth inning.
Mexican Pacific League
Yaquis de Obregon
The run for Obregon is over as they lost 2-1 to Mazatlan last Monday and were eliminated from the Mexican Pacific League playoffs. Christian Villanueva ended a somewhat disappointing postseason for him by going 1-for-3 in the loss.
Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League
Cangrejeros de Santurce
Round Robin play continued in Puerto Rico last Sunday as Santurce defeated Caguas 8-6. Fernando Cruz entered with two outs in the seventh and had a strikeout in a scoreless inning.
Last Monday, the Cangrejeros beat top ranked Mayaguez 4-1. Javier Baez lined up at second base and was 1-for-4 with an RBI. Fernando Cruz took over again in the seventh and fanned two in a scoreless inning. Andres Santiago also had a strikeout as he pitched 0.2 innings.
The Crabbers made things interesting on Wednesday by losing to Caguas 3-1. A win could have eliminated the Creoles, but instead forced a one game playoff. Javier Baez split time between second base and shortstop, going 1-for-4. Fernando Cruz was summoned in the sixth and tossed a scoreless inning.
Santurce evened their championship series with Mayaguez at 1-1 on Saturday with a 5-2 win. Fernando Cruz remained rock solid in middle relief, striking out two in 1.2 perfect innings.
Venezuelan Winter League
Navegantes de Magallanes
Magallanes fell behind in their series with Anzoategui two games to three last Sunday with a 6-5 defeat. Jean Machi took the loss as he failed to get out of the eighth inning. Machi allowed two unearned runs.
Tigres de Aragua
Last Sunday, Aragua took the upper hand in the semifinal series with La Guaira in winning 8-4. Armando Rivero helped shut the door, pitching a scoreless eighth inning.
It was no contest on Wednesday, as the Tigers blew away La Guaira 10-3 to advances to the Venezuelan League championship. Armando Rivero got credit for the win. Rivero entered the game in the seventh and pitched two scoreless innings with two strikeouts.
News and Notes
The Cubs signed INF Munenori Kawasaki to a minor league contract.