Monday, August 9, 2010

SARAPEROS SEEK SECOND STRAIGHT FLAG AFTER WINNING LMB NORTH FINAL

A clutch pitching performance by Cecilio Garibaldi in the ninth inning capped a 6-4 Saltillo win over Monterrey Saturday night, giving the Saraperos a 4-to-2 Zona Madero final series win and a berth in the Mexican League championship series. With 24,385 attendees in Estadio Monterrey looking on, Garibaldi struck out the Sultanes’ Agustin Murillo on three pitches with the bases loaded to end the game.

The series victory puts the Saraperos in the Mexican League championship series for the second consecutive season. Saltillo defeated Quintana Roo, 4 games to 2, for the city’s first undisputed pennant since joining the LMB in 1970. This time around, Saltillo will take on the Puebla Pericos in a best-of-seven Bicentennial Series (commemorating Mexican independence of 1810), beginning Tuesday night in the Pericos’ home park.

PERICOS WIN LMB SOUTH CROWN, BICENTENNIAL SERIES NEXT

The Puebla Pericos scored three runs in the second inning and went on to defeat the Oaxaca Guerreros, 8-3, Sunday to win their Mexican League Zona Hidalgo final series by a 4-games-to-2 margin. 2009 LMB Pitcher of the Year, Andres Meza, allowed one earned run in seven innings for the Parrots to cop his third playoff win this year as 11,799 fans watched on in Puebla’s Estadio Hermanos Serdan.

The Pericos added single runs in the third and fourth frames, two more in the sixth and another tally in the seventh to go up 8-0. Meza kept up his end of the bargain by scattering seven hits while his infield turned three double plays behind him to quash any Guerreros offensive threats.

The current incarnation of the Pericos have yet to win a Liga pennant since the LMB returned to Puebla in 2000, but the city has been home to four Mexican League championship teams (including the Liga’s first season in 1925).

OAKLAND DEALS FOR TIGRES ACE CRAMER

Quintana Roo left-handed pitcher Bobby Cramer, who led the Mexican League in several categories this year, has been acquired from the Tigres by the Oakland Athletics organization. Cramer, who topped the Liga in wins (13), complete games (5), shutouts (3), strikeouts (123) and WHIP (1.12) and finished third in the LMB table with a 2.95 ERA while issuing just 27 bases on balls, has been sent to the A’s AAA affiliate in Sacramento of the Pacific Coast League.

Cramer, a native of Anaheim, California who turns 31 in October, was a 38th round draft pick of the Seattle Mariners in 2001, but never signed a contract with the M’s. After undergoing Tommy John shoulder surgery in 2002, he signed with Tampa Bay and made his pro debut with the Rays’ Class A Hudson Valley affiliate of the New York-Penn League one year later. He spent two years in the Tampa Bay system as a reliever, but was out of organized ball in 2005 and 2006. Oakland signed Cramer in 2007 for the first of four stints in the A’s organization, including his current assignment in the PCL.
His minor league career record prior to 2010 was 27-16 with a 3.38 ERA in 105 games, including 39 starts.

PERICOS STAR SUAREZ TO PLAY WINTERBALL IN VERACRUZ LEAGUE

Puebla Pericos star outfielder Luis Suarez has agreed to play winter baseball for the Xalapa Chileros of the Veracruz Winter League. Suarez, who will play for Puebla in the Mexican League’s Bicentennial Series against Saltillo for the LMB title, batted .361 for the Pericos during the regular season with eight homers and 63 RBIs during the regular season.

The 31-year-old lefty-hitting Suarez has a career batting average of .327 with 89 homers in ten LMB seasons. He came to Puebla last year in a midseason trade. Suarez hit .326 for Los Mochis in the Mexican Pacific League last winter, but says he wanted to spend the upcoming winter closer to home. “I am very glad to be back to play with the Chileros,” he said in a telephone interview. “Xalapa is my home.”


Suarez has played three winters in Xalapa, including with one LIV pennant-winning team in 2007.