Rays Winter League Recap: Alex Cabrera Homers in La Guaira Loss


When your 42 year old legend of a first baseman homers, you’re supposed to win the game! Unfortunately for the Tiburones, Alex Cabrera‘s homer was not enough as they fell in a thriller against Margarita.

Arizona Fall League: Glendale Desert Dogs 4, Peoria Javelinas 1

Not much happening here as Justin O’Conner went 1 for 4 while Patrick Leonard went 0 for 4. O’Conner does have a three-game hitting streak now, albeit with just one single in each contest. No Glendale runner dared to test O’Conner’s arm on a stolen base attempt.

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Dominican Winter League: Tigres del Licey 7, Aguilas Cibaenas 6

We actually have two 42 year old that we’ll talk about here. Manny Ramirez was the one in this game, going 1 for 3 with an RBI single, a hit-by-pitch, and a run scored. He has a respectable .240 average through 7 games for Licey, drawing 4 walks while striking out just 6 times.

Mexican Pacific League: Aguilas de Mexicali 14, Naranjeros de Hermosillo 6

Big win for the Aguilas, and they also received solid contributions from their two Rays-related players. Mike Jacobs went 1 for 3 with a walk and 2 runs scored while Edgar Gomez tossed a scoreless inning of relief. He worked around a hit and a walk while striking out 1. Jacobs now has a three-game hitting streak while Gomez avoided his third straight game allowing a run. His ERA is back below 3.00 at 2.70.

Mayos de Navojoa 6, Tomateros de Culiacán 1

Jon Weber is just a kid compared to the others at only 36 years old, but it’s also impressive that he keeps going strong. Now in his 16th professional season, Weber went 2 for 5 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored in this game to give him a .306/.348/.597 line for the Mayos. Ali Solis went 0 for 3 in the loss for the Tomateros.

Caneros de los Mochis 6, Venados de Mazatlán 3

The Caneros keep waiting for Justin Christian to break out, and he may finally be getting there. He delivered his second multi-hit game in three contests in this one, going 2 for 4 with a triple, a walk, a stolen base, and 2 runs scored. That is what los Mochis had in mind when they signed him to be their leadoff hitter. Olmo Rosario went 1 for 4 with a walk and an RBI in the loss for Mazatlán.

Venezuelan Winter League: Caribes de Anzoátegui 6, Leones del Caracas 2

The Rays-related players for Caracas had quite the game to forget. Albert Suarez allowed 5 runs in 1+ innings while Henry Rodriguez and Daniel Mayora both went 0 for 4. Rodriguez even made two errors, giving him 11 in just 18 games on the VWL season. At least, for our sakes, the three Rays on the Caribes had a much better time.

Brandon Allen had another great game, as expected, going 2 for 5 with a double and an RBI. His line is now at .328/.469/.590 through 17 games. Tomas Perez, meanwhile, went 2 for 4 with a double and Jesus Flores went 2 for 5 with a run scored. The 41 year old Perez continues our theme of older players doing well, but he’s been living up to this standard all season. In 13 games, he has a .370/.426/.620 line, and he’s also still spry enough to play second base. Flores, on the other hand, started the season 0 for 15 but now has a three-game hitting streak with two multiple-hit games.

Bravos de Margarita 6, Tiburones de La Guaira 5 (12 innings)

This was a crazy game that also happened to feature plenty of Rays. Alex Cabrera partied like it was 2003 as he drilled a solo homer in the second inning, the third for the 42 year old this season. Cabrera wound up going 1 for 4 with that homer and 2 walks in this game while Erold Andrus went 1 for 5 with a walk. Their efforts–along with, of course, the rest of the team–gave the Tiburones a 4-1 lead going to the bottom of the ninth.

In came Ryan Reid for the save, but he looked a little shaky. With one out, he allowed a hit-by-pitch and a walk, and after a strikeout, he walked another batter to load the bases. He was just one away from finishing the game, but La Guaira had seen enough. Of course, the next pitcher allowed a two-run double and a run-scoring wild pitch as the Bravos tied the game.

Another former Rays minor leaguer, Matt Nevarez, recorded the final two outs of the 11th inning, but allowed an Odubel Herrera go-ahead homer in the 12th. Luckily for him, the Tiburones had one more rally left in them, going from 2 outs and a runner on first to scoring a pair of runs to win the game. Nevarez went 1.2 innings allowing only that homer while striking out 2. Taylor Motter went 1 for 6 with the first run scored for La Guaira in their win.