The Gigantes game against Estrellas was rained out. Rain has played havoc with the Dominican League schedule. There are teams who have played as many as eight games, and teams who have played as few as three. The Gigantes remain 2-2. They are in third place, a half game behind the Toros del Este and the Tigres del Licey. They were scheduled to play Licey tonight, but it appears that game has already been postponed. Their next game will be Friday, when they host the Toros.
The Gigantes game with Licey was rained out. They remain 2-2, tied for third place with the Toros del Este, a half game behind the Tigres del Licey. The Gigantes are at the Toros tonight.
GIGANTES 9, AGUILAS 8 AT GIGANTES (12 INNINGS)
Batting stars: Jose Siri was 3-for-4 with a double, a walk, and two runs. Abiatal Avelino was 2-for-5 with two walks and two RBIs. Carlos Peguero was 2-for-5 with a walk. Oneil Cruz was 2-for-5. Richard Urena was 2-for-6 with a double.
Pitching stars: Tiago Da Silva struck out three in three innings of relief, giving up one run on one hit and one walk. Carlos Ramirez struck out two in a scoreless inning, giving up two hits. Domingo Tapia struck out two in a perfect inning. Ramon Ramirez pitched a scoreless inning despite giving up a hit and two walks. He struck out one. Wily Peralta pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and striking out one. Yerry De Los Santos struck out all three men he faced.
Opposition stars: Victor Robles was 3-for-5 with a home run, a walk, and two RBIs. John Nogowski was 3-for-6 with three RBIs. Deivy Grullon was 2-for-4. Wilmer Difo was 2-for-5 with a double, a walk, and two runs. Juan Lagares was 2-for-6.
The game: Robles homered leading off the game to put Aguilas up 1-0. The Gigantes took the lead with two in the bottom of the first. Siri doubled and a pair of walks loaded the bases. Juan Francisco then delivered a two-run single to make it 2-1 Gigantes.
It went to 4-1 in the second. Siri walked and scored on an error which sent Ronald Guzman all the way to third. A wild pitch scored Guzman. Aguilas got back into it in the third. Edmundo Sosa doubled and scored on a two-out single-plus-error by Lagares. Melky Cabrera then delivered an RBI single to make it 4-3. Aguilas tied it in the fourth. Difo doubled, went to third on Grullon's single, and scored on a double play.
The Gigantes took the lead back in the fifth. With one out Peguero and Urena singled and a hit batsman loaded the bases. Curz and Siri each had an RBI single to make it 6-4 Gigantes. Each team scored once in the seventh, bringing the score to 7-5.
Aguilas went back in front in the eighth. Singles by Rodriguez, Difo, and Grullon loaded the bases. With one out Robles had an RBI single and Nogowski had a two-run single, making the score 8-6 Aguilas. The first two Gigantes were retired in the ninth, but Gilberto Celestino singled, Ronald Guzman walked, and Avelino delivered a game-tying single to send the game to extra innings.
There was no scoring in the tenth or eleventh. In the twelfth we started the "man on second" rule. It did Aguilas no good, as all three of their batters struck out. An intentional walk started the bottom of the inning. A bunt/fielder's choice loaded the bases. Peguero then hit a sacrifice fly to end the game.
WP: De Los Santos (1-0). LP: Jose Adames (0-1). S: None.
Notes: Avelino is batting .556. Siri is batting .462. Peguero is batting .364. Celestino and Webster Rivas are each batting .333. Guzman is batting .308. Urena is batting .300.
The teams combined to use twenty-one pitchers. Aguilas used twelve and the Gigantes used nine. I still don't know for sure if there's a three-batter minimum, but there may be, because the only pitcher to face fewer than three batters did so to end the inning.
The Gigantes have gone to extra innings in each of the last three games. I don't know what the major league record is, but three seems like it has to be pretty close.
The Gigantes again had a ton of scoring chances, going 5-for-18 with men in scoring position. They stranded 18.
Record: The Gigantes are 2-1, tied for second with the Tigres del Licey. The Toros del Este are in first place, but due to rainouts have only played one game. They are, of course, 1-0.
Next game: The Gigantes are at Escogido tonight.
ESCOGICO 9, GIGANTES 6 AT GIGANTES (12 INNINGS)
Batting stars: Abiatal Avalina was 3-for-4 with two walks and three runs. Jose Siri was 3-for-6 with two runs. Ronald Guzman was 2-for-6 with a double.
Pitching stars: Rogelio Armenteros struck out five in three shutout innings, giving up no hits and one walk. Randy Rosario pitched a perfect inning. Montana DuRapau retired all four men he faced, striking out two. Ramon Ramirez pitched a scoreless inning, walking one and striking out one. Yunior Marte pitched a scoreless inning despite allowing three walks.
Opposition stars: Jim Haley was 2-for-4 with a double and a walk. Josh Lowey pitched three innings of relief, giving up one run on three hits and a walk. Tai Tiedemann struck out four in two innings, giving up an unearned run on no hits and no walks.
The game: The Gigantes struck first. In the first inning Siri singled, Avelino walked, a ground out moved them to second and third, and Kelvin Gutierrez delivered a two-run single. The lead went to 3-0 in the third when Avalina singled and scored from first on Guzman's double.
Escogido got on the board in the fourth when Wander Franco walked, went to third on a wild pitch-plus-error, and scored on another wild pitch. Each team scored once in the fifth. For Escogido, doubles by Otto Lopez and Jimmy Paredes plated the run. For the Gigantes Siri singled, stole second, and scored on an Avalina single, making the score 4-2.
It went to 5-2 in the seventh when Avalina walked, went to third on Guzman's single, and scored on an error. In the eighth, however, Escogido scored three times to tie it. Ivan Castillo doubled and Franco singled, putting men on first and third. A ground out scored a run and Haley's single again put men on first and third. A hit batsman loaded the bases and Julio Y. Rodriguez hit a two-run single, knotting the score at 5-5.
There was no score in the ninth. There was no score in the tenth. There was no score in the eleventh. So, in the twelfth, we used the "start with a man on second" rule. For Escogido, a strikeout and a walk put men on first and second. Haley doubled home the go-ahead run, a sacrifice fly brought home another, a walk and a hit batsman filled the bases, and Tres Barrera's two-run single made it 9-5 Escogido. The Gigantes scored one on an error, but did not bring the tying run up to bat.
WP: Tiedemann (1-0). LP: Ryan Kussmaul (0-1). S: None.
Notes: Gigantes batters walked nine men and hit five.
The Gigantes again had a ton of at-bats with men in scoring position and could not cash them in. They went 2-for-22 with men in scoring position, stranding twelve. Escogido was 6-for-20 with men in scoring position, stranding eleven.
The Gigantes used twelve pitchers, six of them for less than an inning. I couldn't tell if they have a three-batter minimum rule, as each pitcher who faced fewer than three batters did so to end an inning.
The Gigantes have opened with two extra-inning games. I don't suppose that's a record or anything, but it does seem at least somewhat unusual.
Record: The Gigantes are 1-1, tied for second place with three other teams, a half game behind the Toros del Este.
Next game: The Gigantes host Aguilas tonight.
The Dominican League started play last night. As with the Mexican League, we've chosen a team at random to follow. Our team will be the Gigantes del Cibao.
GIGANTES 8, AGUILAS 5 AT AGUILAS (10 INNINGS)
Batting stars: Juan Francisco was 3-for-6 with three doubles and four RBIs. Kelvin Gutierrez was 2-for-4 with two walks and two runs. Carlos Peguero was 2-for-4 with a walk.
Pitching stars: Chris Ellis struck out three in three shutout innings of relief, giving up only a walk. Rayman Guduan pitched a perfect inning. Ramon Ramirez pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit.
Opposition stars: Robel Garcia was 1-for-3 with a home run and a walk. Rangel Ravelo was 1-for-4 with a home run.
The game: In the first inning walks to Jose Siri, Ronald Guzman, and Gutierrez loaded the bases with one out. Francisco then delivered a two-run double to put the Gigantes up 2-0. Aguilas got on the board in the second on a Garcia homer, making it 2-1.
Each team scored one in the third. For the Gigantes, Peguero and Wilin Rosario singled and a sacrifice fly scored the run. For Aguilas, Wilmer Difo walked, went to second on a ground out, and scored on an error, leaving the score 3-2.
There was more scoring in the fourth. For the Gigantes, singles by Jason Krizan and Guzman put men on first and third. A force out scored a run. Francisco doubled, putting men on second and third, and a wild pitch brought home a second run. For Aguilas, Ravelo homered. It was 5-3 Gigantes through four.
The bullpens then settled in. The Gigantes loaded the bases with one out in the eighth but did not score. It cost them, because Aguilas tied it in the bottom of the inning. Walks to Difo and Victor Robles put men on first and second with one out. Melky Cabrera singled home a run and Juan Ligares singled home another, making the score 5-5.
Neither team scored in the ninth, so we went to the tenth. No "start with a man on second" rule here, at least not in the tenth inning. The Gigantes didn't need it. Guzman walked, Gutierrez singled, and Francisco hit a two-run double. Webster Rivas had an RBI single to make it 8-5 Gigantes. Aguilas got a two-out single in the bottom of the inning but did not bring the tying run up to bat.
WP: Guduan (1-0). LP: Junior Fernandez (0-1). S: Ramirez.
Notes: Lots of big-leaguers are playing for Aguilas, including Melky Cabrera, Victor Robles, Juan Lagares, Rangel Ravelo, Wilmer Difo, Luis Castillo (not the former Twin), Buddy Boshers, and Neftali Feliz.
The Gigantes stranded 15 men and were 3-for-20 with men in scoring position. Twenty at-bats with men in scoring position is a ton of at-bats. Aguilas had only five at-bats with men in scoring position, going 2-for-5.
Richelson Pena started for the Gigantes. He pitched four innings, allowing three runs on two hits and a walk and striking out one.
Record: The Gigantes are 1-0, tied for first place with the Tigres del Licey.
Next game: The Gigantes host Escogido tonight.