The KC Royals were well-represented in the Caribbean Series, that concluded last week with an epic 18-inning final between Mexico and the Dominican Republic. Host Mexico won on a Doug Clark solo homerun.
So how did they get there?
The series began back on February 1st. Mexico beat Puerto Rico 3-0, behind the right arm of Luis Mendoza. He picked up the victory after pitching six shutout innings. He allowed three hits and walked two while striking out three. Mendoza threw 51 of his 85 pitches for strikes. Rey Navarro went 0-for-3 in the game with a walk and a strikeout while playing second base for Puerto Rico.
On the same day, the DR beat Venezuela, 7-2. New Royal Miguel Tejada played shortstop and went 1-for-2 with a walk and an RBI.
The next day, Mexico fell to Venezuela, 4-3 after being down 3-1 heading into the 8th inning. Former Royal minor leaguer Mario Lisson went 2-for-4 with an 8th inning homerun off former big leaguer Oscar Villareal.
The DR improved to 2-0 after a 6-2 victory over Puerto Rico. Tejada went 1-for-3 with a double, a walk, and a run scored while playing shortstop. Navarro played second base and went 1-for-4.
On February 3rd, the DR beat host Mexico, 6-5 in 11 innings. Mexico scored an unearned run in the 9th inning off TB Rays closer Fernando Rodney. Tejada went 2-for-4 while playing shortstop and hit a two-run homerun in the 2nd inning. Venezuela beat Puerto Rico to push them to 0-3.
The next day, Puerto Rico picked up their first victory with a ten-inning win over the Dominican Republic, 6-4. Navarro once again played second base and went 2-for-5 with four RBIs. He tied the game in the 8th inning and hit a two-run homer in the 10th inning for the win. Tejada played third base and went 2-for-4 with a walk. Mexico beat Venezuela, 2-0.
On February 5th, Puerto Rico made the standings interesting by picking up their second win, a 4-1 victory over Venezuela. Navarro went 0-for-4 with a stolen base. The DR beat Mexico, 11-6 to clinch a spot in the finals. Tejada was back at shortstop and went 2-for-5 with a homerun, two RBIs, and two runs scored.