The winter league season is winding down, as I wrote about Gigantes winning the Dominican Winter League Championship on Sunday.
Let’s start in the Puerto Rican Winter League, where Santurce took a 3-2 series lead in the best-of-seven Championship Series. After Monday off, Santurce has a chance to clinch a spot in the Caribbean Series on tonight.
Over the last week, centerfielder Reymond Fuentes has played in every game for Santurce. He has bounced around the order: sixth (January 22-23), seventh (January 20th), and eighth (the last two games of the week). In the five games, Fuentes went 5-for-21 with a double, two triples, three runs scored and three RBIs. He struck out nine times.
Moving on to the Venezuela Winter League, where the best-of-seven Championship Series began on Saturday, pitting Caribes (11-5) against Magallanes (10-6).
After being hit by a pitch on January 19th (and being pinch run for), Balbino Fuenmayor returned to the Caribes lineup (batting fourth and playing first base) for the Championship Series. Over the three games, he went 3-for-12 with a double and a two-run home run. He did strike out three times.
Shortstop Alcides Escobar played in two games for La Guaira last week before the postseason came to an end for his team on January 22nd (La Guaira finished the postseason with a 5-11 record). Esky went 1-for-6 with a run scored, an RBI, and two strikeouts.
Finally to the Australian Baseball League, where the Preliminary Finals are set between Sydney (22-24) and Perth (28-20) beginning on January 30th (thru February 2nd). First place Adelaide (32-16) awaits the winner for the Championship Series beginning on February 6th.
Ryan Dale started at third base in two of the four games. In Game 2 of the series, he went 0-for-3 with a walk and a strikeout. In the final game of the season, he went 1-for-4 with a strikeout. He played both third base and shortstop (and back to third base), as everyone moved around so that player/coach Scott Wearne could play all nine positions. It was the first time in the history of the ABL that a player played all nine positions.
Even Texas pitching prospect Cody Buckel played out of position: he played both second base and left field and even batted (0-for-1 with a strikeout).
Stay tuned for updates on the winter league championship series. Remember, the Caribbean Series starts on Monday, February 2nd in San Juan, Puerto Rico!