The Hermosillo Naranjeros were abandoned by outfielders Darnell McDonald and Brandon Watson following last weekend’s series with Mexicali. After the Naranjeros beat the Aguilas, 4-3, last Sunday (thanks in part to a homer by McDonald), the two left Hermosillo to go home to the USA.
While Watson had been struggling at the plate, going just 4-for-26 in his last six games for the Naranjeros, McDonald was second in the Mex Pac with a .378 average, though he had cooled off considerably after a hot start. Hermosillo manager Homar Rojas said both players had worked hard for him, but added that Watson complained of being “tired” and McDonald had earlier mentioned his pregnant wife.
To replace the two extraneros on the roster, Hermosillo has brought in pitcher Travis Blackley and outfielder Chris Roberson, both of whom were teammates of Watson in Reno of the Class AAA Pacific Coast League last summer. Blackley, who pitched for Australia in the World Baseball Classic, is a former major leaguer who won four games with three saves for Reno in 111 innnings this year. He pitched for Mexicali last winter, going 2-3 in 12 starts for the Aguilas. Roberson, a popular Mex Pac veteran, hit .261 for Reno in 2009.