Royals winter league recap: Week 12

The Christmas holiday and the end of the regular seasons have made this week’s KC Royals winter league recap light.

220px-PuertoRicoBaseballLeagueThe Puerto Rican League‘s winter league regular season ends on December 30th (tonight). Since there are only five teams in the league, the top four make the playoffs.

That means 18-19 Santurce will be making the postseason. Jack Lopez continues to start for them, as he mainly batted second in their order last week (though he did lead off on December 23rd). Last week, Lopez moved around the infield, playing both second base and shortstop (and once as the DH). In five games, Lopez went 3-for-18 with two runs scored and a stolen base. He did strike out five times.

Reymond Fuentes played in two games last week, both ends of the doubleheader on December 23rd (his last games of the week). He went 2-for-6 with three strikeouts. He pinch hit in the first game of the DH and laid down a sac bunt.

The Venezuelan Winter League will also see its regular season come to an end tonight.

Centerfielder Paulo Orlando was the lone Royal to start in a VWL game last week. Lara, who is 29-34, was eliminated from postseason play last night, so he does not have many games left. In two games, he went 3-for-9 with a double and a run scored. Orlando did ground into a double play.

Gabriel Noriega, a Lara teammate, entered on defense in the ninth on Monday at shortstop.

Carlos Garcia, who had not appeared in a game since November 22nd, pinch ran on Monday in the 7th inning. His team, Margarita (23-39) was also eliminated from the playoffs (they are in last place).


Finally to the Dominican Winter League, who ended its regular season on December 21st and saw their playoffs began on December 27th.

dominican_winter_league_logoThe top four teams made the postseason, which began in a round-robin style. On Saturday, Gigantes beat Aguilas (2-1) and Estrellas beat Toros (6-0). On Sunday, Aguilas beat Toros (8-2) and Gigantes beat Estrellas (4-1). On Monday, Estrellas beat Aguilas (5-1) and Gigantes beat Toros (2-1) in walk off fashion.

After being designated for assignment, Moises Sierra is back with the Royals (he was outrighted to Triple-A Omaha). He started all three playoff games for 3-0 Gigantes in right field. Batting third in the order, he went 3-for-12 with a walk and two runs scored. His solo home run in the eighth of Game 1 tied the game (Gigantes won in 11 innings).

Gigantes walked off a winner in Game 3 as Philadelphia Phillies prospect Maikel Franco tripled with one out and scored on Robinson Diaz’ single to center.

Francisco Pena started and caught the first two playoff games for 1-2 Aguilas. Batting eighth in the order, he went 0-for-8 with two strikeouts. He also had a passed ball in Game 2.

Angel Franco started the first playoff game at second base for Aguilas and went 1-for-4 with a sac bunt. He entered for defense in the sixth in Game 2 and played both second and third base. Franco walked in his only plate appearance. He did not play in the Game 3 loss.



Stay tuned next Tuesday for a playoff edition of the winter league recap!

About Jen Nevius

I first became a KC Royals fan way back in 1995 when I attended my first Wilmington Blue Rocks game. I fell in love with minor league baseball then and began following the Royals as former Blue Rocks clawed their way to the big leagues. 3+ years ago I started covering the Royals for Aerys Sports, but since the site has been shut down, I am going out on my own.
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