Team Australia Rallies to Beat the World

December 19th, 2014

Down 8-3 the Australian All Stars rallied for eight runs in the bottom of the eighth to beat the World 11-8. Korean Dae-Sung Koo was the big loser, giving up six runs on four hits and two walks to take the loss. Masato Goto started the inning and walked the first two hitters he faced.

Tim Kennelly got the big hit in the inning with a 3-run double. This was after three walks loaded the bases and a Stefan Welch single scored the first run of the inning. Robbie Perkins also had a 2-run double in the inning to give the Aussie All Stars a 9-8 lead. A wild pitch scored the tenth run and a single by David Kandilas scored the final run of the inning.

Samuel Holland pitched the last inning to pick up the save. The 17 walks and three errors in the game made one question the all star nature of the game. There were no homeruns in the game.


Kang Seeking $5 Million Per Year

December 18th, 2014

Teams posting for Jung-ho Kang will have to be prepared to give him a multi year $5 million per year contract before signing him. That is what was told to Yonhap News Agency.

Alan Nero, representing Kang has informed major league teams what the asking price is. Major league teams have until 5PM Friday to decide whether they feel Kang is worth that amount and whatever posting fee they have to pay. Nero claims five teams have expressed interest in Kang.

The Nexen Heroes will also have to be satisfied with the posting fee. Even if a team agrees to pay Kang $5 million per year, if the posting fee is too low the Heroes can pull the player back and not allow him to pursue a major league contract.

Kang does have the option of negotiating with a team in the NPB in Japan. The Heroes would get nothing if Kang signs with a Japanese team. The media has speculated the posting fee for Kang should be between $5 to $10 million, making a three year $15 million contract upwards to $25 million, or a little more than $8 million per year.

It is expected Kang will be moved to either second, third or the outfield once he signs a major league contract. He was a shortstop in the KBO, but with artificial turf at most Korean fields and the difficulty he had handling the routine plays, the grass would further erode his defense, making a less demaning position more desirable. He did hit 40 homeruns in an offensive oriented league, which could translate to 20 homeruns in the major leagues if pitchers do not take advantage of his long swing.

Professional Baseball Player to Ambasador of New Zealand

December 18th, 2014

Mark Gilbert played one season for Tony Larussa with the Chicago White Sox in 1985. The Chicago Cubs were the first team to sign him in 1978. He has his name in the Baseball Encyclopedia, going 6 for 22 with four walks and three runs batted in. The next year, after undergoing knee surgery he decided to leave baseball to begin a career in an investment firm in Boca Raton. That turned into a good career move for Gilbert. Gilbert was 28, with a bum knee and they did not pay the million dollar salaries back then to journeyman outfielders.

From there he eventually served as the deputy national finance chairman of the Democratic National Committee. As with ambassadorships, President Obama rewareded him with a job as the Ambassador to New Zealand. They are playing a lot more baseball in New Zealand. Perhaps his professional baseball experience leaves him more qualified than many other people selected to ambassador posts. He becomes the first former professional baseball player to become a credentialed Ambassador.

You can read his Wikipedia page here:


Mexican League Update

December 18th, 2014

The Yaquis de Obregon were the first half winners, so they are guaranteed a spot in the playoffs. The Mexican League is the only one of the four leagues not to play a round robin to determine the Series del Caribe winner. They play best of seven series to determine the champion, even advancing a losing team with the best record to advance to the second round. if myworld remembers correctly, that losing team went on to represent Mexico in the Series del Caribe and that team went on to win the Series del Caribe last year.

Hermosillo or Obregon have represented Mexico in seven of the last Series del Caribe. Myworld will only include the won/loss record of the second half, since that will determine the second participant in the playoffs. The other teams are calculated based on the points they have accumulated based on their first half and second half finish.

Aguilas de Mexicali (13-8)

Xorge Carrillo - .279, 8, 28, leads the team in RBIs, doubles (18), homeruns and runs scored (30).
Dave Sappelt - .309, 5, 26 and second to Carrillo in the above categories. He is 6 for 8 in stolen bases.
Chris Roberson - .264, 4, 26 with 29 runs scored and 10 doubles.
Gil Velasquez - .374, 0, 22 with only 10 extra base hits (all doubles) of his 61 hits.

Marco Antonio Duarte - 2-3, 2.19 in 11 starts. His 48 strikeouts is tops on the team
Javier Solano - 7-1, 2.72 among the top pitchers in wins. His 21/27 walk to whiff ratio is unimpressive.
Mario Meza - 2-1, 1.93 in 31 appearances. He has an impressive 9/39 walk to whiff ratio in 32 innings.
Horacio Ramirez - 2-2, 1.74 in just six starts, but his last two starts he has not given up a run covering 10 innings.

Tomateros de Culiacan (14-9)

Jorge Vazquez - .267, 7, 29, leads team in homeruns and tied for first in RBIs.
Rico Noel - .238, 1, 15 but more runs scored (38) than hits (35) with 32 walks and a 22 for 25 success rate in stolen bases. A .279 slugging percentage with a double, triple and homerun of his 35 hits.
Issmael Salas - .281, 5, 29 with 31 runs scored and a team leading 10 doubles.
Maxwell Leon - .342, 2, 21 with a 11 for 15 success rate in stolen bases.

Arnold Leon - 3-2, 2.05 in eight starts. A .196 opposition average and 48 strikeouts.
Gonzalo Sanudo - 3-1, 0.75 in 23 appearances with a 7/32 walk to whiff ratio in 24 innings.

Charros de Jalisco (13-9)

C.J. Retherford - .356, 4, 14 coming over from Venezuela where he struggled (.200, 1, 7).
Marquez Smith - .268, 10, 35 with 16 doubles
Leo Heras - .267, 7, 30 with 17 doubles and a 13 for 16 stolen base success rate. 35 runs scored.
Japhet Amador - .248, 12, 46, the team RBI and homerun leader.
Jose Manuel Rodriguez - .316, 5, 32 with a team leading 36 runs scored.

Brian Broderick - 3-1, 0.68 with 16 saves and a three digit fastball.
Ivan Salas - 2-0, 0.00 no runs given up in 27 appearances covering 17 plus innings.

Caneros de los Mochis (11-11)

Sebastion Valle - .303, 5, 17, if you are looking for a sleeper catcher look at Valle for the Pirates now.
Joan Carlos pedroso - .304, 7, 21 with a 31/33 walk to whiff ratio.
Juan Carlos Gamboa - .258, 6, 32 leads the team in RBIs.
Greg Golson - .329, 2, 13 recent arrival causing havoc on basepaths, 7 for 8 in stolen bases.

Tomas Solis - 4-5, 3.15

Naranjeros de Hermosillo (11-12)

Jerry Owens - .340, 0, 17 with 27 runs scored
Yunesky Sanchez - .306, 3, 33 leads the team in RBIs and runs scored (28).
Jose Amador - .299, 8, 20, with a .914 OPS tops on the team.
Sebastian Elizalde - .283, 4, 15 with a team leading 15 doubles.

Juan Pablo Oramas - 4-5, 3.25 in 13 starts with 61 whiffs in 63 plus innings. Padres recently removed him from 40-man roster
Rafael Martin - 2.11 with 10 saves.
Roy Corcoran - 4-3, 2.37 but a 0.49 ERA as a reliever.

Venados de Mazatlan (10-11)

Olmo Rosario - .305, 3, 31, leads team in RBIs, runs scored (29) and doubles (23).
Jesus Castillo - .299, 1, 19 with 13 doubles and 31/29 walk to whiff ratio.

Walter Silva - 5-4, 2.85
Amicar Gaxiola - 7-1, 2.35 plus a complete game no hitter.
Steven Hensley - 0-1, 1.20 with 7 saves and .189 opposition average.

Mayos de Navojoa (9-14)

John Lindsey - .264, 9, 20, his .938 OPS is tops on the team
Carlos Orrantia - .310, 2, 9, recent arrival has hit 10 doubles
Jose Guadalupe Perez - .299, 4, 20 with a team leading 30 runs scored.

Eddie Gamboa - 6-2, 1.83 with a 7/56 walk to whiff ratio in 68 plus innings.
Gene Escat - 1.56 with a team leading 7 saves.

Yaquis de Obregon (7-15)

Carlos Valencia - .254, 11, 37, leads team in RBIs
Donald Lutz - .281, 6, 26, with a 23/45 walk to whiff ratio in 22 games. Team leading 16 doubles
Esteban Quiroz - .433, 1, 8 in just 14 games. 3 for 3 in stolen base success rate.

Ramon Delgado - 4-2, 2.61
Arturo Lopez - 6-3, 3.56 with a .214 opposition average

Guilty Plea for Puig Smuggling Case

December 17th, 2014

Gilberto Suarez has pleaded guilty in the smuggling case involving Yasiel Puig, agreeing to forfeit a house, condominium, and a Mercedes Benz that were purchased with the $2.5 million he pilfered from the Puig kidnapping. He also gave up all interest in the contract signed by Cuban shortstop Aldemys Diaz, who was signed to a minor league contract by the St. Louis Cardinals.

Suarez could face a maximum of ten years in prison for the smuggling, but it is expected his sentence will be much less because of his guilty plea. March 6 has been established as the sentencing date.

Another Cuban smuggler Eliezer Lazo was sentenced to 14 years in prison for smuggling 1,000 Cubans including Leonys Martin. That smuggling venture included paying smuggling fees to drug cartels in Mexico.

It is interesting to note that this sentencing comes at a time when the United States and Cuba have agreed to make an attempt to normalize relations. Prior to the communist takeover minor league baseball had a AAA team in Havana. A winter league also included four teams that included on their roster a number of minor league ball players, including Tommy Lasorda and Rifleman Chuck Connors. Some say the baseball in Cuba has improved under communism with the establishment of teams in every province as demanded by Fidel Castro, rather than four teams playing primarily in Havana, with rosters filled with non-Cuban ballplayers. With the defection of so many quality ball players to the United States the normalized relations will make it easier for scouts to travel to Cuba and sign players to major league contracts, unless agreements similar to Japan, Korea and Taiwan about signing players from that country are put in place.

If you look at the attendance of Cuban games the crowds are minimal. Considering they only charge the equivalent of ten cents to see a game there for natives and twenty five cents for foreigners, this could be a reflection of a dying interest of the sport in Cuba. Time will tell whether that death continues with the normalized relations and the departure of many Cubans to the major leagues. Major league baseball tends to restrict the participation of Dominican, Venezuelan and Mexican ballplayers from playing in winter ball if their major league team feels it is in the best interest of the team the player rests.

Venezuelan Update

December 17th, 2014

Below is an update on the top contributors for the various Venezuelan winter league teams as the regular season is about to close and a round robin will begin to determine the Series del Caribe representative.

Caribes de Anzo√°tegui (34-20)

Alexi Amarista - .400, 1, 3. His late arrival has provided an offensive spark to the team.
Balbino Fuenmayor - .321, 7, 29. The Royals signed the independent league player who could fill the role of Billy Butler
Niuman Romero - .290, 1, 11 but with a team leading 31 runs scored. His 13 doubles is tops on the team.
Orlando Arcia - .275, 7, 28 with 30 runs scored and 11 doubles.

Daryl Thompson - 3-2, 2.91 with a team leading 45 whiffs in 55.2 innings of work.
Jose Alvarez - 5-1, 1.77. Moved to the starting rotation with 17 appearances and 5 starts. More dominate in relief (0.76 ERA and .136 opposition average.
Pedro Rodriguez - 1-0, 0.32 with 7 saves. Took over for Cody Hall.
Cody Hall - 0-0, 0.00 with 12 saves in 17 appearances. Left before Thanksgiving giving up one unearned run. Opposition hit .105 against him.

Aguilas del Zulia (31-22)

Giovany Urshela - .398, 3, 22. The leading hitter has been absent for a month.
Jose Pirela - .317, 6, 20 with a team leading 11 doubles.
Ali Castillo - .313, 1, 17, leads team with 15 stolen bases and 36 runs scored.
Ender Inciarte - .313, 1, 7 with a 10 for 12 success rate in stolen bases in half the games of Castillo.
Aaron Altherr - .286, 4, 27, the team leader in RBIs.

Yeiper Castillo - 2-2, 1.56 in 11 starts.
Silvino Bracho - 0.93 with two saves and 7 holds. An impressive 29 whiffs in 19 innings and a .097 opposition batting average.

Tigres de Aragua (29-23)

Jose Martinez - .327, 4, 25. A seven game multiple hitting streak ended yesterday. 33 runs scored and 18 doubles tops on team.
Ramon Flores - .315, 3, 19
Teodoro Martinez - .313, 4, 30, tops in RBIs and triples (4).
Avisail Garcia - .312, 5, 22 with a team leading .528 slugging percentage
Renato Nunez - .281, 4, 22

Renee Cortez - 2-0, 0.86 with one save but a poor 9/6 walk to whiff ratio.
Doug Mathis - 3-1, 2.79 in 8 starts and one relief appearance. a 13/16 walk to whiff ratio in 42 innings

Navegantes del Magallanes (27-27)

Roughned Odor - .330, 1, 13 to give him the favorite role for Rangers second base job
Adonis Garcia - .310, 5, 36 leads the team in RBIs. Also leads team in homeruns and doubles (12).
Ezequil Carerra - .287, 2, 9 with more triples (4) than doubles and homeruns combined (3).
Ronny Cendeno - .269, 3, 19, leads the team in runs scored with 28.
Lew Ford - .342, 1, 9 now playing in the Dominican Republic

Hassan Pena - 1.37 with 15 saves. Opposition hitting .167 against the Cuban.
Orangel Arenas - 5-0, 3.02 in 10 starts plus four relief appearances.

Cardenales de Lara (27-29)

Paulo Orlando - .332, 7, 38 with a 24/33 walk to whiff ratio in 56 games.
Carlos Rivero - .282, 14, 42, his low batting average will prevent him from winning Triple Crown.
Maikol Gonzalez - .244, 0, 9, his 33 runs scored lead the team as does his 13 stolen bases in 16 attempts.
Cesar Izturis - .309, 0, 18, the defensive whiz is showing he can carry a stick - at least in Venezuela.

Erasmo Ramriez - 2-0, 0.30, the new arrival finally gave up an earned run in fifth start. A .149 opposition average.
Terry Doyle - 3-3, 3.86 but with 46 whiffs in 46 innings despite pedestrian stuff.

Tiburones de la Guair√° (25-29)

Odubel Herrera - .378, 4, 22 with a 7 for 7 success rate in stolen bases. Leads team with 27 runs scored.
Rene Reyes - .307, 5, 28 the team RBI leader. His 27 walks lead the team.
Alex Cabrera - .301, 5, 17 at 45 will not lead the league in homeruns like last year.
Jose Martinez - .297, 5, 24

Junior Guerra - 4-4, 3.98 but with 61 whiffs in 61 innings.

Leones del Caracas (24 - 31)

Felix Perez - .366, 7, 32, leads the team in RBIs, runs scored (33) and doubles (14).
Alex Gonzalez - .331, 7, 28 tied with Perez for most roundtrippers.
Carlos Perez - .330, 3, 15, no wonder Houston traded for him.
Jesus Aguilar - .303, 4, 18, currently with a 5 game multiple hit streak.

Tiago da Silva - 1-1, 2.33 with a 2/32 walk to whiff ratio in 27 innings of relief.

Bravos de Margarita (19-34)

Breyvic Valera - .377, 0, 8, a recent addition with Flores.
Wilmer Flores - .345, 3, 9 finally living up to his potential
David Peralta - .313, 2, 29, leads the team in RBIs
Taylor Motter - .243, 6, 13 leads the team in runs scored with 25 and 7 for 9 in stolen bases.

Omar Poveda - 2-2, 1.80 a recent addition with four starts.
Jhonatahan Ramos - 0.66 ERA in 19 relief appearances. A .180 opposition average.

Puerto Rican Update

December 15th, 2014

With the Series del Caribe being played in San Juan, Puerto Rico this year between February 2 -8 it does not appear the local team will have an opportunity to compete in the event. San Juan sits in fifth place of five teams, where the top four make the round robin playoffs to determine the Puerto Rican representative in the Series del Caribe.

Crioolos del Caguas (20-10)

Trever Adams - .345, 3, 10 with a team leading .921 OPS.
Rey Navarro - .304, 2, 20, leads the team in RBIs and runs scored with 17.
Rusney Castillo - .320, 1, 3 but has only played seven games.

Saul Rivera - 0-1, 3.65 with 12 saves in 13 appearances
Michael Nix - 1-0, 1.44 in 10 appearances, three starts. His ERA as a starter 1.80.
Jose De Leon - 2-1, 1.13, appears to be done for the season, only gave up runs in one of his four starts.

Indios de Mayaguez (17-13)

Kennys Vargas - .260, 6, 20 but a more impressive 26-21 walk to whiff ratio. 19 runs scored tied for team lead.
T.J. Rivera - .314, 1, 15 also scored 19 runs
Daniel Ortiz - .256, 3, 16 with a team leading 10 doubles. A poor 4/27 walk to whiff ratio.

Andrew Barbosa - 0-2, 1.84 in seven starts. Averages just over four innings per start which makes wins impossible. A .202 opposition average.
Jorge Lopez - 1-1, 1.73 in six starts. Has yet to give up more than one earned run in any of his starts.
Fernando Cabrera - 0.75 with 9 saves. He has finished all 12 of his appearances, giving up only one run, giving up just three hits in 12 innings.
Jonathan Albaladejo - 3-2, 1.00 in set up role. A .148 opposition average.

Gigantes de Carolina (14-15)

Anthony Garcia - .317, 9, 31 with a 1.085 OPS. The big bopper in Puerto Rico. Team leading 21 runs scored
Jesus Feliciano - .391, 1, 19
Ozzie Martinez - .330, 3, 17 with 20 runs scored.
Tsukada Masayoshi - .375, 0, 7 with a team leading four triples and 3 for 3 in stolen base success.

Giovanni Soto - 3-2, 1.45 in 11 appearances, three starts. A 0.94 WHIP and .198 opposition average.
J.C. Romero - 1-0, 0.61 with only four saves in relief corps. Not a lot of save opportunities for Gigantes bullpen. A 0.61 WHIP.

Cangrejeros de Santurce (13-16)

Javier Baez - .364, 1, 3 a recent arrival who hit his first homerun. Played in only three games but struck out six times.
A.J. Jimenez - .333, 0, 11
Delino Deshields - .236, 2, 10 with a 9 for 12 success rate in stolen bases.
Yadiel Rivera - .215, 2, 16 leads the team in RBIs
Jordan Lennerton - .245, 1, 12 power outage is not what Santurce was seeking from Jordan.

Ivan Maldanado - 3-1, 0.00 has given up five unearned runs. In last two starts has given up just three hits in 16 innings, not allowing a run. A .161 opposition average.
Jorge Martinez - 4-0, 1.80 in seven starts.
Jon Velasquez - 0-1, 2.03 with 7 saves in 13 appearances.

Senadores de San Juan (9-19)

No batters hitting over .300.
Jon Garcia - .287, 3, 14, leads team in RBIs.
Ruben Gotay - .270, 4, 12, leads team in homeruns and runs scored (14).
Ivan Dejesus - .218, 2, 11

Ryan Kelly - 1-0, 2.25 with 4 of the teams 5 saves.

Bay Stars Negotiating for a Gourriel Duo

December 15th, 2014

The Yokohama Bay Stars are negotiating with both Yulieski Gourriel and his younger brother Lourdes Gourriel to play with them next year. Lourdes is only 21 years old and is having a break out year in Cuba this year. Many major league teams would be quite pleased to have Yulieski on their major league roster and Lourdes in their minor league system. The Bay Stars could have both players filling their infield next year, Lourdes at shortstop (though his defense has been questionable in past years) and Yulieski at third or second, wherever the Bay Stars greatest need is. Lourdes has also played second base.

Two Slam Day for 20 Year Old Serrano

December 15th, 2014

Twenty year old Luis Serrano slugged two grand slam homeruns and a three run shot in the Sancti Spiritus Roosters 21-3 pasting over the Matanzas Crocodiles. The two grand slams in one game have been achieved by five other Cubans, most recently Alexei Bell, who hit his in the same inning a few years ago. Serrano fell one RBI short of tying Bell and Fernando Hernandez for most RBIs in the game.

Serrano started his RBI production in the first inning with a three run shot to give Matanzas an early 6-0 lead. He put the game away in the fifth with a grand slam and in a 9-run 8th unloaded on his second grand slam of the day. He was third to hit in the 9th but the game was called after 8 becuase of the slaughter rule, wiping away his opportunity to break the single game RBI record.

The 20 year old third baseman may be a player to watch. In his second season in the Cuban professional league Serrano is hitting .273 with 7 homeruns and a team leading 23 RBIs. He does show a lack of patience at the plate with a 4/19 walk to whiff ratio. Most sluggers in Cuba have the ability to walk more than they whiff, i.e. Alfredo Despaigne 15/4 walk to whiff ratio in only 14 games.

Entering the game Matanzas was in first place at 27-14. Sancti Spiritus was firther down in the pack, past the top eight at 18-22.

Wyverns Pay Kim Double Pay After Padre Rejection

December 14th, 2014

The Padres and Kwang-Hyun Kim could not agree to a contract, but it didn’t take long for the SK Wyverns and Kim to agree. The Wyverns more than doubled the pay for Kim, raising his salary from 270 million won to 600 million won, which will give him a contract of $543,000 for 2015. This makes me think the Padres were trying to negotiate a split contract with Kim, paying him the minimum or just above if he made the major league team, but dropping that payment down if he was to play in the minor leagues. Yonhap News states from an informed source Kim turned down a two year guaranteed $2 million, which would seem to negate that thinking.

With his current contract he now becomes the highest paid pitcher in Wyverns history. He will become eligible to be posted again next year. After three consecutive injury plagued seasons Kim will be looking for back to back good seasons to convince teams his health issues are behind him.

Kim also celebrated his contract signing by getting married on Sunday. The Padres may not have wanted him but his wife and the Wyverns said yes.