Friday, June 24, 2011

TIGRES WIN FIFTH STRAIGHT TO STRETCH LEAD IN LMB SOUTH

Veteran designated hitter Carlos Sievers (pictured) clobbered two homers and drove in five runs to pace the Quintana Roo Tigres to an 8-4 win over the Minatitlan Petroleros Thursday night in Mexican League action at Cancun’s Estadio Beto Avila.

Tigres second baseman Carlos Gastelum went 3-for-5 and scored twice while catcher Iker Franco whacked a solo homer to augment Sievers’ fireworks as Quintana Roo copped their fifth win in a row to lift their Liga-best record to 49-30, pushing the Tigres to a 5.5-game lead over second-place Veracruz in the Southern Zone standings despite having the lowest team batting average in the Liga at .277. QR’s team ERA of 4.30 is the LMB’s best, proving that pitching really does matter (especially when nobody else seems to have it).

Jose Ramirez (6-4) went seven innings and let in four runs for the win while the Petros’ Rafael Cruz (5-5) was rocked for five runs in the first (including homers by Sievers and Franco) before being mercifully yanked by interim manager Shamar Almeida with only one out on the board.

Almeida is the third manager in Minatitlan this season, replacing Francisco “Paquin” Estrada on May 21, a little over a month after Estrada took the reins from Victor Meza on April 19. Minatitlan dropped further into last place in the LMB South by falling to 33-47, including a 12-15 mark under Almeida (a native of Los Mochis).