The Undercards: Jorge Cantu Slams Clutch Homer But Naranjeros Fall in 14

You get a hanging breaking ball and you finally end your frustration- and then your pitchers give it all back. Sounds like the Devil Rays years, doesn’t it?

Dominican Winter League: Gigantes del Cibao 4, Tigres Del Licey 3 (10 innings)

This game had a crazy finish. It was 1-1 entering the 10th when Jesus Colome blew up for Licey. Ex-Rays prospect Rhyne Hughes led off against him with a double and was bunted to third base. Colome intentionally walked the Astros’ Jimmy Paredes, but then Moises Sierra of the Blue Jays came throw with a go-ahead RBI single to make it 2-1 Gigantes. That was it for Colome as he recorded just 1 out on the sac bunt but Cesar Valdez just made things worse in relief, allowing both inherited runners to score to make it 4-1 Cibao. But Licey went down swinging. With 1 out and a man on first, ex-big leaguer Lenny DiNardo made quick work of Rangers prospects Jurickson Profar and Leonys Martin. But up came the big leaguers to keep the game alive. Hanley Ramirez singled in a run before Juan Francisco singled in Ramirez (don’t ask me how Ramirez scored from first on a single). A wild pitch moved the tying run to second base before DiNardo intentionally walked Ronny Paulino. But the first guy who we haven’t heard of in this sequence, Arismendy Alcantara, grounded out to end the game as the Gigantes held on to win 4-3. Hughes went 2 for 4 with the big double and run scored for Cibao while Juan Miranda went 1 for 1 as a pinch-hitter for Licey.

Toros del Este 2, Aguilas Cibaenas 1

Manny Ramirez and co. did not have a fun game, getting 1-hit by Raul Valdez and the Este bullpen. Mets catching prospect Francisco Pena had the only hit, an RBI double in the second inning. The Toros bizarrely struck out just 2 in their 1-hitter. Ramirez and Omar Luna both went 0 for 4.

Mexican Pacific League: Tomateros de Culiacan 6, Naranjeros de Hermosillo 5

This was another crazy game, with the score tied at 1-1 after the 7th inning. A Jose Amador 2-run homer gave Hermosillo a 3-1 lead entering the bottom of the 8th, but with 2 outs and a runner on first, Maxwell Leon and ex-big leaguer Marlon Byrd slammed back-to-back homers to give Culiacan a 4-3 lead. But in the 9th, Jorge Cantu came up huge in the clutch, delivering a game-tying RBI double to send the game into extra innings. The 4-4 score would hold until the 14th, when Cantu got back to work, slamming a go-ahead solo homer. But a walk-off 2-run single by Ben Guez gave Culiacan a 6-5 win. Cantu went just 2 for 7 in the game but made his 2 count like crazy, and Humberto Cota went 2 for 5 with a double and a walk.

Venados de Mazatlan 2, Mayos de Hermosillo 1

The Mayos got just 5 hits, one by Wes Bankston, who went 1 for 3 to raise his average on the season to .301.

Venezuelan Winter League: Navegantes de Magallanes 6, Bravos de Margarita 3

This game is most notable because all the Rays and ex-Rays who should have been in this game got days off: Leslie Anderson, Erold Andrus, and Chris Nowak for Magallanes and Sean Burroughs, who has been Margarita’s best hitter all season. Burroughs did pinch-hit later in the game and there was one ex-Rays prospect who got into the game for Magallanes, Jean Machi, who tossed a perfect inning of relief.

Leones del Caracas 3, Caribes de Anzoategui 2

Ex-big leaguer Sean Gallagher gave the Leones 5 innings of 1-hit ball and Henry Wrigley went 1 for 4 with a double. One-time Rays minor league Jon Meloan tossed 0.2 scoreless innings for the Caribes.

Topics: Humberto Cota, Jorge Cantu, Tampa Bay Rays

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