Even the biggest proponents of on-base percentage will tell you that a walk isn’t as good as a hit. But when you get a lot of them, it certainly helps you win. When you get 9 hits and 6 walks in a game, as long as you get any pitching you’re in pretty good shape.
Dominican Winter League: Tigres del Licey 7, Gigantes del Cibao 3
Cibao pitchers struck out 9 batters in this game- but that was canceled out and then some by six walks, and the Tigres took advantage. Juan Miranda helped set the tone for Licey, going just 0 for 1 out of the 5-hole but drawing 3 walks and scoring 2 runs. He now has managed an outstanding 11 walks versus just 9 walks. (If only Miranda had any power! His patience is great!) Also appearing for Licey was Jesus Colome, who struck out 1 in a shutout inning as he worked around a hit. Joel Peralta worked around a hit to pitch a shutout frame for Cibao, not striking out a batter after striking out 2 in his first two appearances for the Gigantes, while Rhyne Hughes went 0 for 4.
Venezuelan Winter League: Navegantes de Magallanes 3, Bravos de Margarita 2
In a Navegantes-Bravos game not that long ago, there might have been four or five current and former Rays. Now, as players like Sean Burroughs and Chris Nowak have gone home, just one appeared in this game, lefty Neil Schenk, who retired the one batter he faced. Schenk has now made VWL appearances across 6.2 innings and has not allowed an earned run.
Tigres de Aragua 12, Tiburones de La Guaira 4
The question is still out there: why hasn’t Joey Gathright attempted a stolen base for the Tigres? Demoted from the leadoff spot to the nine-hole for Aragua, he went 0 for 3 but did draw 2 walks and score a run. Two other ex-Rays got into this one for La Guaira, with Cesar Suarez having a rough game, going 0 for 4 and Ray Olmedo actually going 1 for 2 with a pinch-hit double and a run scored. His double was just his second extra-base hit in the VWL despite the fact that he’s been with the Tiburones since the start of the season.