I hope you all enjoyed your New Year’s and made it home safely. It is time for another KC Royals winter league update.
The Mexican Pacific League‘s regular season came to an end on December 30th. Playoffs are underway, as Hermosillo (16-17) faces Culiacan (21-10), Obregon (16-16) faces Guasave (16-16), and Mazatlan (16-16) faces Mexicali (18-14). All of those series begin tonight.
For the playoff push, Obregon has two current Royals. Outfielder Willy Taveras played in three games last week. He went 1-for-9 with an RBI and three strikeouts. Pitcher Luis Mendoza made one start last week in his preparation for a spot on the Royals Opening Day roster. Over five innings, he allowed four runs on five hits, three walks, and a hit batter. He did strike out three.
The round robin playoffs are underway in the Dominican Winter League. Currently, Aguilas and Toros are tied for first place at 3-1. Escogido follows with a 2-2 record and Estrellas has yet to win in the playoffs (0-4). None of the Royals playing in the DWL played in a game last week.
The round robin playoffs begin tonight in the Venezuelan Winter League. Five teams have advanced to the playoffs: Magallanes (36-27), Zulia (35-28), Caribes (35-28), Caracas (35-28), and Lara (34-29).
Yender Caramo was one of the newest Royals to begin play in winter ball last week. He pitched in two games for first place Magallanes. Over 1.1 innings, he allowed three runs on four hits and two walks while striking out one.
Luis Durango played in four games last week for Caribes. He went just 2-for-14 (.143) with a double and two RBIs. He walked three times and stole two bases while striking out twice.
Juan Gutierrez pitched in one game last week for Caracas. In his one inning of work, he picked up his league-leading 14th save. He walked just one in that inning. Guillermo Moscoso made one start last week. Over four innings, he allowed two runs on three hits (including a homerun) and three walks while striking out two.
Alcides Escobar played in three games for Lara and committed an error. He went 6-for-13 (.462) with two doubles, a triple, and three RBIs. He struck out twice, stole a base, and was caught stealing. Paulo Orlando played in four games. He went 4-for-16 (.250) with a double, an RBI, and four strikeouts. Jose Jimenez pitched in two games, but did not record an inning. He allowed a run on a walk.
The winter league season came to an end for a few in the VWL.
Salvador Perez went 0-for-4 in one game for La Guaira (29-33). He did drive in a run and walked once. Anthony Ortega pitched in one game. Over two innings, he struck out five.
Max Ramirez played in three games for Margarita (23-38). He went 3-for-10 with a walk and two strikeouts.
The Puerto Rican League‘s regular season also came to an end. Their playoffs are set to begin tonight. Carolina (19-21) will face first place Caguas (24-16) and Santurce (21-18) will face Mayaguez (23-17).
Rey Navarro played in five games for first place Caguas, all at second base. He went 6-for-22 (.273) with a triple. However, he struck out five times.
Irving Falu played in five games for Mayaguez (all at shortstop where he committed an error). He went 8-for-21 (.381) with a triple and three RBIs. He walked three times, stole two bases (but was caught once), and struck out once. Falu ended the PRL’s regular season with a league-leading 30 runs scored.
Some saw their PRL’s seasons come to an end. Christian Colon played in four games for Ponce (17-23) last week. He played three games at second base and three at shortstop. He went 9-for-18 (.500) with a double, a homerun, and three RBIs. He walked four times, stole five bases, and struck out twice. Colon ended his winter league season with a league-leading 13 stolen bases.
Cesar Ogando pitched in one game for Ponce. Over two innings, he allowed two hits while striking out one. Catcher Alexander Marquez got into just one game, but did not record an at-bat.
Alex Llanos played in five games for Manati (15-24). He went 5-for-18 with a walk and four strikeouts.
In Columbia, Luis Piterson is struggling both offensively and defensively for Monteria. He played in four games, all at shortstop, and he committed seven errors. He went just 5-for-37 (.135) with two doubles and three RBIs. He struck out six times. Mauricio Ramos played in seven games for Sincelejo. He went 5-for-24 (.208) with three walks and two RBIs. He struck out six times.
Carlo Testa struggled a bit last week for last place Melbourne (9-21) in the Australian Baseball League. He went 4-for-17 (.235) in four games. He struck out four times and was caught stealing three times.
The same cannot be said for fellow outfielder Nick Van Stratten in Panama for Herrera. He was HOT in five games last week. He went 10-for-18 (.556) with two doubles, two triples, and six RBIs. He walked three times and stole a base. Luis Melgar pitched in one game last week. Over 3.1 innings, he allowed three hits and a walk while striking out one.
It was a struggle for two players with Caballos de Cocle. Matt Fields played in four games. He went just 2-for-12 (.167) with four strikeouts. He did hit his first homerun and drive in three. Infielder Michael Liberto played in three games at shortstop and committed two errors. He went 0-for-4 with a strikeout.