Monday, May 31, 2010


Reynosa’s Leo Heras’ RBI single in the bottom of the seventh inning gave the Zona Madero team a 4-3 lead they would never relinquish as the Northerners beat the southern Zona Hidalgo by that score in the 78th annual Mexican League All-Star Game last Tuesday in front of a full house at Chihuahua’s 14,500-seat Estadio Monumental.

The Broncos’ centerfielder came to the plate with the score tied 3-3 after Saul Soto of Monclova singled and moved to second on a groundout by Reynosa’s Domingo Castro. Heras then lined a single off Yucatan’s Jose Vargas to bring in Soto with what ended up as the game-winning run. For his pinch-hitting effort, Heras (who is batting .316 for Reynosa) was named the All-Star MVP by media members attending the contest. “It’s my honor,” Heras said following the game. “I’m very happy. It’s very important for my career, very significant.”

Other notable figures in the game included Mexico City shortstop Jose Luis Sandoval and Campeche pitcher Francisco Campos. Sandoval extended his record by appearing in his 19th All-Star Game for the North, while Campos extended his own milestone with a record seventh start for the South.

The 37-year-old Campos began his professional career as a catcher in Houston’s minor league system in 1991, hitting just .141 for the Astros’ Gulf Coast League team over 21 games, but converted to pitching prior to the 1995 season for Campeche and became a starter for the Piratas one year later. While the Guaymas native spent subsequent stints pitching for the Brewers and White Sox AAA affiliates, the man called “Pancho Ponches” has become a mound mainstay in the Mexican League with over 140 career wins and multiple strikeout titles.

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