Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Mochis goes up 2-0 on Venados, other series tied 1-1

The Los Mochis Caneros pulled off a 6-4 comeback win over visiting Mazatlan Tuesday to take a 2 games to 0 lead in their Mexican Pacific League first round playoff series.  Elsewhere in MexPac postseason play Tuesday night, Mexicali won 7-6 in Navojoa to even that set at a game apiece while Hermosillo knotted their series with Culiacan after two games by taking a 6-4 road win.  Wednesday will be a travel day before Mazatlan, Mexicali and Hermosillo host Game Threes of their respective series on Thursday night.

LOS MOCHIS 6-11-0, Mazatlan 4-4-0

J.C. Linares and Leandro Castro hit back-to-back homers in the bottom of the sixth inning while Eugenio Velez and Saul Soto added key longballs later to lead the Caneros' 11-hit attack against Mazatlan.  Linares, Velez and Soto each finished with two hits as 10,353 watched at Estadio Emilio Ibarra Almada in Los Mochis.

Venados first baseman Carlos Munoz crushed a three-run homer off Caneros starter Manny Barreda in the fourth inning to put Mazatlan ahead 3-1.  After Linares and Castro tied the game at 3-3 with their next-door-neighbor homers in the sixth, the Venados regained the lead in the top of the seventh on a homer from venerable shortstop Heber Gomez. In the bottom of the frame, Velez (pictured) went deep for two runs to put Mochis ahead for good and Soto added an insurance solo shot to cap the Caneros' three-run seventh and end the night's scoring.

Despite being touched for four runs over seven innings, Barreda gor the win for the Caneros, striking out six along the way.  Reliever Matias Carrillo Jr. took the loss for Mazatlan after giving up Munoz' homer.  Carrillo has had an interesting winter.  After showing an 8.64 ERA with 8 walks in 11 appearances with Obregon, he landed in Mazatlan, where he had a 1.50 ERA and no walks in 10 trips from the bullpen.

Mexicali 7-11-3, NAVOJOA 6-12-3

C.J. Retherford belted a tiebreaking solo homer to left in the top of the seventh inning and joined his Mexicali teammates in holding Navojoa scoreless over their last three frames as the Aguilas held on for a 7-6 win before 10,497 onlookers at the Mayos' Estadio Manuel "Ciclon" Echeverria Tuesday.

Mexicali was trailing 1-0 before breaking out for four runs in the top of the fourth as batting champ Luis Juarez doubled in Retherford and Agustin Murrillo.  The host Mayos roared back for five runs of their own in the bottom of the fourth. The usually sure-handed Chris Roberson had a play that he won't soon forget, misjudging an Alejandro Gonzalez fly ball for one error aand then making an errant throw from center field.  When the dust settled, two Navojoa runs had scored.  Quincy Latimore later lined a single up the middle that brought in two more Mayo runs to make it five for the frame and a 6-4 Navojoa lead.  The Aguilas chipped away with single runs in the fifth and sixth to knot the score, setting the stage for Retherford's winning blast in the seventh.

After Mexicali starter Kameron Loe was reached for six runs (three unearned) in 4.2 innings, former Braves prospect Edgar Osuna came in with the Mayos leading 6-5.  Osuna pitched 1.1 shutout frames to earn the win, couresty of Retherford's homer.  Navojoa reliever Jesus Garcia, who served the fateful pitch to Retherford, was also tagged for the loss.

Hermosillo 6-10-2, CULIACAN 4-9-2

Tim Torres smacked a two-run homer to key a three-run sixth inning that stretched visiting Hermosillo's lead to 6-1, and the Naranjeros shrugged off a three-run eighth by Culiacan to outlast the Tomateros, 6-4, on Tuesday night.  A crowd of 16,561 aficionados at Estadio de los Tomateros went home disappointed.

Hermosillo took a 3-0 lead in the top of the third, Efren Navarro providing the heavy artillery with a two-run double to key the entrada.  Ryan Lollis singled in Jose Manuel Orozco to put Culiacan on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fifth, but Torres' fence-clearing shot to right one inning later ultimately put the game out of reach for the home team. The Naranjeros bullpen had a nightmarish eighth as three relievers endured a three-run frame that saw Jose Manuel Rodriguez score on an infield error and Joey Meneses trot in from third on Ali Solis' bases-loaded walk to bring the score to 6-4.  Meneses opened the inning's scoring with an RBI single and his crossing the plate ended it.

Starter Barry Enright gave Hermosillo 5.1 strong innings, letting in one run on four hits with three strikeouts.  Edgar Gonzalez took the loss for Culiacan after giving up a leadoff double by Dustin Martin and an RBI single by O'Koyea Dickson to stake the visitors a 5-4 lead.  Nationals farmhand Rafael Martin earned the save after issuing Solis' bases-loaded walk in the eight by working through a scoreless ninth.