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01/10/2005 Archived Entry: "Latin Baseball Play Offs Continues"
By Carlos Fragoso
MEXICAN PACIFIC LEAGUE
4 teams have qualified to continue for the play offs second rouns, as Culiacan defeated Guasave in 5 games early on, Los Mochis over Mazatlan and surprisingly Mexicali beat Obregon one of the favorites in 5 games.
Mazatlan advances as the lucky loser, since they won 3 games, and were the best 4th place of all losers.
Next round will continues tomorrow, with Culiacan hosting Mazatlan, and Los Mochis will do the same with Mexicali.
Obregon, a fiasco in this series, has seen their pitching collapsed, as closers ALLAN SIMPSON and TONY FIORE failed dramatically to save games which could be win, despite of the fact of a great offensive displayed by Obregon hitters like JAVIER ROBLES who hit 3 HR´s in a game, Geronimo Gil and Andy Tracy, but not enough to make Yaquis pass through to next door.
Obregon manager MARV FOLEY was hardly criticized and booed by fans, due to their lack of accuracy to change pitchers, specially to support pitchers FIORE and SIMPSON
Mazatlan - Los Mochis series resulted the most disputed one, as they had to fight all through the seventh game to define it, in which the sugarcane growers needed to go 13 innings to get this final victory.
Meanwhile Culiacan, passed over Guasave not as easy as they thought, but good enough to resume the series in 5 games.
DERRICK WHITE the play off leading hitter, with .500 was simply hot against his former teammates, while GERONIMO GIL smashed 5 HR´s for Yaquis, whose pitching were the last in the series with a horrendous 7.60 ERA.
PABLO ORTEGA got 2 wins for Mazatlan as well as ISIDRO "SID" MARQUEZ in relief for Mexicali
Stas for the regular season ended with ADAN MUÑOZ of Culiacan as the batting champion with a .367 avg, followed by another catcher,NOE MUÑOZ (no relation) with .359.
In HR´s , MORGAN BURKHART the leader with 23, as well as in RBI´s with 64.
In pitching, JORGE CAMPILLO had it all with a 10-1 record and 2.05 ERA.
MARC KROON got 20 saves, and ALFREDO ACEVES got 80 K´s all leading numbers.
Aragua Tigers with a 7-1 record is leading play offs in Venezuela, while three other teams competing Pastora, Caracas and Caribes are identical in record in the second spot.
The best two positioned teams will play for the final series.
During regular season, Lino Connell got his best performance ever, by getting the batting title with a .378 avg.,while Javier Colina got 16 HR´s to beat Luis Landaeta who hit 14, he also led ín RBI with 51.
Edwin Hurtado had 7 wins, and veteran Rich "Guapo" Garces got a league leading 13 in saves.
Licey Tigers are leading this round robin series , with a 4-2 record, followed by Cibao Eagles.
The addition of Oakland OF, Eric Byrnes who has been simply hot, with 3 HRs in as many games has been the weapon they´ve counting with to continues toward the title .
In the regular season, Juan Camilo was the batting champion with .353 avg, followed by Pablo Ozuna with .344.
Willy Mo Peña with 7 HR´s the king on this department, while in pitching Raul Valdez had 0.79 ERA to lead this part, and Joel Peralta the winningest with 7 and 1 lost.
Manny Aybar the strikeouts king with 64, and Jose Vargas the saves king with 17.
Carolina, Caguas, Ponce and Mayaguez are in the semifinal series playing for the Puerto Rican Baseball title.
Yesterday Mayaguez beat Ponce 10-6, thanked to a HR´s by Ramon Castro off Cuban Osvaldo Fernandez, who was hit as well as he was in the Mexican League with Obregon, allowing 5 runs in 2.2 innings.
In Caguas, visitors Gigantes beat local team by 8-4, with J.Hamilton taking the win and Justin Thopmson the lost.
Edgar Clemente and Alex Cintron hit home runs.