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01/22/2006 Archived Entry: "VIVA BEISBOL Weekly (Mexican Pro Baseball News)"

Venados beat Guasave 5-1 in first MexPac title series game

It was a tale of two pitchers Saturday night in the opening game of the Mexican Pacific League Finals in Guasave. Pablo Ortega was razor-sharp for Mazatlan but Guasave's Luis Carlos Rivera pitched like a man trying to use a butter knife on a steak as the Venados trimmed the Algodoneros 5-1 at Estadio Carranza Limon.
Ortega allowed only one run over eight innings for the Deer, striking out six Cottoneer batters while issuing just one walk. Closer Marty McLeary came in to clean up in the ninth and shut down the Algodoneros 1-2-3 to give the Venados a 1-0 advantage in the best-of-seven series. Closer Marty McLeary relieved Ortega and had a 1-2-3 ninth inning to ice the victory for Mazatlan. Conversely, Rivera had a hard time finding the plate for Guasave, coughing up three runs on six walks, a wild pitch, a hit batsmen and four hits before being yanked with one out in the third inning.
Miguel Flores went 3-for-3 for Mazatlan and scored a pair of runs, but it was not a big night of offense for the defending champs, who cobbled their five runs together with only six hits for the game. For their part, Guasave mustered only four safeties, including shortstop Luis Borges' solo homer in the third off Ortega (the only mistake Pablo made all night).
The two teams will meet again Sunday in Guasave before taking Monday off as a travel day prior to renewing the series in Mazatlan Tuesday.

MexPac 2006 FINAL SERIES Schedule:
1 Saturday, January 21 Mazatlan 5, at Guasave 1
2 Sunday, January 22 Mazatlan at Guasave
3 Tuesday, January 24 Guasave at Mazatlan
4 Wednesday, January 25 Guasave at Mazatlan
5* Thursday, January 26 Guasave at Mazatlan
6* Saturday, January 28 Mazatlan at Guasave
7* Sunday, January 29 Mazatlan at Guasave

REGULAR SEASON SERIES: Mazatlan vs. Guasave
Oct. 25 at Guasave 4, Mazatlan 2 (WP-E. Leyva, LP-P. Ortega)
Oct. 26 Mazatlan 6, at Guasave 3 (WP-Loya, LP-R. Gonzalez)
Oct. 27 at Guasave 13, Mazatlan 1 (WP-L/ Moreno, LP-P. Ochoa)
Nov. 15 Guasave 8, at Mazatlan 4 (WP-S. Lundberg, LP-W. Silva)
Nov. 16 Guasave 1, at Mazatlan 0 (11) (WP-JC Jimenez, LP-JL Garcia)
Nov. 17 at Mazatlan 2, Guasave 1 (14) (WP-S. Baez, LP-C. Garibaldi)
Dec. 6 at Mazatlan 2, Guasave 0 (WP-A. Elvira, LP-I. Montano)
Dec. 7 Guasave 5, at Mazatlan 0 (WP-R. Gonzalez, LP-P. Ochoa)
Dec. 8 at Mazatlan 2, Guasave 1 (WP-W. Silva, LP-S. Lundberg)
Dec. 20 Mazatlan 1, at Guasave 0 (WP-W. Silva, LP-S. Mora)
Dec. 21 Guasave 8, Mazatlan 5 (WP-L. Navarro, LP-F. Campos)
Dec. 22 Mazatlan 7, at Guasave 6 (WP-O. Bustillos, LP-S. Mora)
GAMES IN MAZATLAN: Mazatlan 3, Guasave 3
GAMES IN GUASAVE: Guasave 3, Mazatlan 0
SEASON SERIES TOTAL: Mazatlan 6, Guasave 6

1/11/06 Mazatlan 5, Navojoa 3 (Venados’ Roberto Saucedo belts a 3-run homer)
1/12/06 Navojoa 6, Mazatlan 5 (Jesse Gutierrez strokes a 3-run HR for the Mayos)
1/14/06 Mazatlan 5, Navojoa 2 (Mazatlan’s Pedro Castellano hits a 3-run homer)
1/15/06 Navojoa 4, Mazatlan 2 (Gutierrez was 3-for-5 with 3 RBI’s for Navojoa)
1/16/06 Mazatlan 3, Navojoa 2 (Mazatlan’s Walter Silva induces 13 groundouts)
1/18/06 Mazatlan 7, Navojoa 1 (Hugo Castellano throws 6 shutout innings for Deer)

1/11/06 Guasave 4, Hermosillo 0 (Guasave’s Spike Lundberg tosses 5-hit shutout)
1/12/06 Hermosillo 7, Guasave 1 (Naranjeros’ Chris Prieto goes 4-5 with HR and 2B)
1/14/06 Guasave 6, Hermosillo 0 (Guasave’s Edgar Leyva allows 1 hit in 7 innings)
1/15/06 Hermosillo 5, Guasave 1 (Iker Franco had 2 2B’s and 3 RBI’s for Hermosillo)
1/16/06 Hermosillo 8, Guasave 4 (Luis Alfonso Garcia has HR and 5 RBI’s)
1/18/06 Guasave 3, Hermosillo 1 (Lundberg hurls 6.2 more shutout innings)
1/19/06 Guasave 4, Hermosillo 1 (Leyva allows 1 run for 5 IP in another good start)

Hard to believe it's been nearly ten months, but the Road Trip is coming to an end after starting last April in Cancun. Our 23rd and final stop is in Mazatlan, Sinaloa. Named after a native word for "place of the Deer," Mazatlan is first and foremost the largest seaport between Los Angeles and the Panama Canal in which tourism gradually developed as an adjunct to its prior success as the "Shrimp Capital of the World."
While there are tourists who come for the outstanding sport fishing, a lot more people visit Mazatlan for its five miles of Pacific beaches lined by a seawall promenade called the Malecon. Visitors also indulge in golfing, bicycling, tennis and water sports. However, if that's all any visitor to Mazatlan does, they'll miss the essence of the city.
There is an area in Mazatlan called the Gold Zone, and that is where the tourists generally congregate (and there are a lot of them). If visitors head out of the Gold Zone, they'll find that there is a lot of "Old Mexico" in Mazatlan. Whatever the reason for visiting, road trippers will find that Mazatlan has the most moderate weather in the MexPac. While the other seven LMP cities are inland and can get frying-pan hot during the summer, Mazatlan sits just south of the southernmost tip of the Baja Peninsula, which blocks breezes off the ocean from getting to places like Obregon, Culiacan and Hermosillo. English is probably spoken in Mazatlan more than any other city in the LMP (except perhaps Mexicali).
The Mazatlan Venados have historically been one of the strongest franchises in the MexPac. The Venados (or "Deer") have won six pennants in the modern LMP, plus another five flags in the old winter Pacific Coast League in the 1940’s and 50’s. Mazatlan survived a first round loss last January as the "lucky loser" team, and then went on to capture the MexPac pennant and their first Carribean Series title playing in front of their home fans at 12,000-seat Estadio Teodoro Mariscal. Movies have been made about less compelling things than that.
In February, VIVA BEISBOL will be putting together a Word document compendium with all 23 Road Stop visits throughout Mexico that will be available for free to SUBSCRIBERS ONLY. If you are interested in having it emailed to you, contact us at, and we’ll send it to you when it’s ready.
NEXT WEEK: MAESTROS OF MEXICO (Ruben Amaro, infielder)

Last week’s Quiz answer: Roberto Avila, last week’s “Maestro” subject and a Salon de la Fama member, is the only player to have two ballparks named after him: Parque Beto Avila, a 6,000-seat facility in Cancun, and another Parque Beto Avila in his home town of Veracruz, which seats about 7,000 fans.
This issue’s Quiz: Can you name the major league all-star shortstop who has agreed to play for the Mexican team in the upcoming World Baseball Classic, even though he was not born in Mexico?


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