The winter leagues had a sparse week as we head into the holiday season. With a breakout performance by Ian Happ, Mesa was able to claim the Arizona Fall League Championship. James Farris was also vital for the Solar Sox down the stretch.
Meanwhile, Corey Black and Yasiel Balaguert were top performers in the Roberto Clemente League.
With the long and short of it, take a look inside today’s Down on the Farm Report.
Arizona Fall League
The start of the final week of the season started with a rousing 13-5 win for Mesa over Glendale last Monday. Ian Happ batted second and started at second base, going 2-for-4 with a home run, two walks, three RBI and a run scored while committing his first error.
It took 10 innings on Tuesday, but the Solar Sox would prevail 6-5 over Salt River. Victor Caratini caught the game and was 1-for-4, while Ian Happ was at second and Eloy Jimenez was the DH, each going 0-for-4. Stephen Perakslis got the final two outs of the game, one with a strikeout, to earn the victory.
Things weren’t as rosy for Mesa on Wednesday, as they were buried by Glendale 10-0. Victor Caratini was able to post one of the Solar Sox five hits, as he was 1-for-3 as the DH. James Farris and Ryan McNeil were the only Mesa pitchers untouched, as Farris fanned three in two scoreless innings. McNeil struck out the side in the ninth.
In the AFL finale on Thursday, the Solar Sox backed their way into the title game by tying Scottsdale 6-6. Eloy Jimenez provided some of the firepower by going 1-for-3 with a double and two RBI, while Ian Happ was in left field and went 0-for-4 with a run scored.
On Saturday, Ian Happ powered Mesa to the AFL championship in beating Surprise 6-1. Happ was once again in left field and went 4-for-4 with two home runs, one from each side of the plate, a double, three RBI and three runs scored. Eloy Jimenez was the DH and went 0-for-4, while James Farris sealed the game with a strikeout in a scoreless ninth.
Dominican Winter League
Cibaenas started the week with a 2-1 victory over Orientales last Monday. Juan Perez started in left field and was 2-for-5 in the win.
The tables were turned on the Aguilas on Tuesday in losing 2-1 to Cibao. Juan Perez moved to DH and was 1-for-4 in the loss.
The Eagles seemed to be stuck in a rut on Wednesday as they lost to Este 2-1. Juan Perez was back in left field and was 1-for-3 with a double.
Rain curtailed the game on Thursday for Cibaenas, as they lost to Orientales 4-2 in six and a half innings. Juan Perez bounced back to DH and went 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI.
The Aguilas closed out the week with a 3-0 victory over Licey on Sunday. Juan Perez was in left field and was 2-for-4 in the win.
Estrellas de Orientales
Orientales dug themselves too deep of a hole on Wednesday as they were unable to rally in a 6-4 loss to Escogido. Stephen Fife returned back to his inconsistent ways as he allowed five runs (four earned) and struck out four in four innings for the loss.
Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League
Cangrejeros de Santurce
Santurce began the week with an efficient 3-1 victory over Caguas on Tuesday. Jacob Hannemann was at leadoff and center field, going 0-for-4 with a walk. Corey Black got the last four outs, two by strikeout, to earn his fifth save.
On Friday, the Cangrejeros scored two runs early and held on for a 2-1 win over Caguas. Jacob Hannemann remained both in center field and leadoff and was 1-for-4 with a double. Corey Black had another perfect outing as he had a strikeout in the ninth for his sixth save.
Despite three runs in the first inning for the Crabbers, Santurce lost on Saturday 6-5 to Mayaguez. Jacob Hannemann led off the game with a home run as he was 2-for-4.
Criollos de Caguas
It was never in doubt on Wednesday as Caguas flattened Carolina 4-1. Miguel Mejia tossed a perfect eighth inning for his fifth hold.
Gigantes de Carolina
Carolina evened their record at 7-7 on Tuesday with a 4-1 victory over Aguadilla. Yasiel Balaguert banged out a solo home run as he was 1-for-4.
Gigantes could not maintain any momentum on Wednesday as they lost to Caguas 4-1. Yasiel Balaguert was 1-for-4 in the loss.
Venezuelan Winter League
Navegantes del Magallanes
Magallanes was able to cruise to a six-run lead on Tuesday as they would defeat Lara 6-3. Greyfer Eregua entered the game in the seventh and allowed an earned run while eventually striking out the side.
It was over for Navagantes almost before things got started on Thursday as the four runs in the first inning doomed them to a 6-3 loss to Zulia. Greyfer Eregua came on in the seventh and allowed an earned run while recording a strikeout.
Tigres de Aragua
It was “swing from the heels” night on Tuesday as both teams combined for 29 hits as Aragua lost to La Guaira 10-9. Gioskar Amaya was stationed at third base and was 2-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI in the loss.