Sunday, October 9, 2011

MORENO, ORTIZ TOP LIST OF FIVE SALON CANDIDATES

Longtime Mexico City Tigres pitching star Angel Moreno and former Nuevo Laredo slugger Alejandro Ortiz were the top vote-getters among Election Committee members picking nominees for entry into the Salon de la Fama next year.

Moreno got 73 votes and Ortiz picked up 60. Also moving on to the next stage are Francisco Garcia (28), Pablo Gutierrez Delfin (26) and ex-Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Ismael Valdez (who tied with former catching great Homar Rojas with 24 votes before outpolling Rojas 6-5 on a second ballot).

Moreno turned in a 240-170 record in 26 seasons in the Mexican League between 1976 and 2006, nine of them with the Tigres. He reached double figures in wins 16 times, and had over 2,000 strikeouts in his career. In 23 Liga seasons, 15 with the Tecolotes, Ortiz crashed 434 homers and drove in 1,597 runs while topping the .300 mark six times. He hit 27 or more homers ten years in a row between 1984 and 1993, forming a devastating trio with Andres Mora and Carlos Soto in Nuevo Laredo.

Twenty-two players received votes in Monday’s balloting. The five who earned the nod will be joined in final voting next year by Hector Heredia, Nick Castaneda, Chico Rodriguez, Antonio Pulido and former Mets catcher Alex Trevino. Three players and one writer will be selected to the Salon in 2012.