Friday, December 24, 2010


With third baseman Ramiro Pena off for his marriage and honeymoon, the Culiacan Tomateros have brought in Cuban infielder Yunesky Sanchez (pictured) to fill Pena’s roster spot. Pena, a Yankees utility man who was part of New York’s 2009 World Series championship team, was batting .238 with one homer and 13 RBIs in 28 games for the Tomateros before taking a break to marry Anahi Sandoval.

In Sanchez, Culiacan picks up a 26-year-old ballplayer whose versatility allows him to play all four infield positions. A player in the Diamondbacks minor league system, Sanchez defected from Cuba in 2004 and signed with Arizona in 2007. Since then, he has been a postseason All-Star Team pick in the Midwest League in 2007 and Southern League in 2008. Last summer, Sanchez played for Reno in the AAA Pacific Coast League, where he batted .286 with homers and 52 RBIs in 105 games for the Aces. He was playing winterball earlier this year in Colombia for the Medellin Potros before the league suspended operations this month due to ongoing weather problems.

While playing for Matanzas in the Cuban National Series prior to leaving the island nation, Sanchez was a teammate of current Culiacan right fielder Amaury Cazana. (NOTE: Photo replaces an earlier picture misidentified as Sanchez...Thanks to a BBM reader who caught my attention)