Thursday, November 1, 2007

Tigres double up Navegantes, 10-5

Erold Andrus

Magallanes 5 at Aragua 10

W: K. Middleton (2-0, 1.71); L: C. Hernandez (1-2, 5.40)
HR: MAG: E. Alfonzo (1), E. Andrus (1).

The defending Venezuelan Winter League Champion Tigres de Aragua put four runs on the board in the 2nd inning and continued to pound out runs against los Navegantes del Magallenes, finishing off with a 10-5 victory over the visiting team.

Mike Aviles (Kansas City) tripled to get things started in the 2nd, followed by Ruben Salazar (F/A) taking a walk to first. Raul Chavez (NY Yankees) singled out to left to plate Aviles. Luis Maza (LA Dodgers) then singled to load up the bases. Willie Romero's (F/A) double cleared them out again, although Maza was taken out at home plate. Still the three runs were worrysome to the Navegantes who brought Jose Rodriguez (Houston) into the game to replace Carlos Hernandez (F/A) on mound. No worries for the Tigres though, as Jose Martinez (St Louis) singled to score Romero. Jesus Feliciano (NY Mets) hit into a double play to end the inning.

The Navigators took one back in the top of the 3rd when former Miracle Erold Andrus (Tampa Bay) homered off starter Kyle Middleton (Houston). Middleton went on to work 5.1 innings, allowing 3 runs (all earned) on 6 hits and 1 walk while striking out 3.

Salazar would reach in the bottom of the fourth on a fielding error by former Miracle Jesus Merchan (Philadelphia). Chavez then doubled, but Salazar would not go home until Martinez it into a ground out after Romero was intentionally walked.

Aragua added to their lead in the 5th, when former Rochester middle infielder Luis Rodriguez (San Diego) and Ronny Cedeno (Chicago Cubs) both singled their way onto base. Aviles would fly out and Salazar would strike out, before a Chavez singled scored the pair.

Middleton got into trouble in the 6th, when he walked Andrus, and then allowed a home run to Edgardo Alfanzo (F/A). He got Marcos Vechionacci (NY Yankees) out on strikes but allowed Richard Hildago (F/A) to double. That would finish it up for Middleton, as Yohan Pino (Minnesota) came out to the mound. Pino got Mark Saccomanno (Houston) out on strikes, while a Luke Scott (Houston) fly out retired the side.

The Tigers were not distressed though, As Feliciano singled, and Rogriguez walked his way onto the bags. A wild pitch by Jean Machi (Toronto) moved the pair. He'd strike out Cedeno, then walked Aviles to get at Salazer. Aragua inserted Alex Nunez (F/A) into the game as a pinch hitter though, and his ground ball single brough in Feliciano. The Navigators then brought Jim Magrane (Washington) onto the mound. He'd walk Chavez to force in run before taking Maza out on strikes.

Pino would walk Jorge Cortes (Chicago Cubs) in the top of the 7th, but Cortez ended up stranded at 2nd at the end of the inning.

Aragua's offense continued to roar however, as Romero scored off a Rodriguez single.

Rochester's Bobby Korecky (Minnesota) replaced Pino for the top of the 8th inning, allowing Singles to Richard Hidalgo (F/A) and Scott, before Cortes would double the pair in. However, Hector Gimenez (Houston) ground out to end the inning, and the scoring, as Francisco Butto (F/A) allowed only a single in the 9th before sending Magallanes back to the dugout.

Aragua plays a pair against LaGuaira on Thursday and Friday at 7:30 PM AST before returning home to face Caracas on Saturday at 5:30 PM AST.


Brian Buscher was named the Twins Minor League player of the year for 2007, while former Miracle starter Kevin Slowey earned the 2007 Twins Minor League Pitcher of the year honors.

Buscher had 21 runs on 41 hits in 40 games (132 at bats) for the Rochester Red Wings. He earned his promotion mid-season from New Britain, after batting .308 (37 runs, 76 hits, 247 at bats) while knocking in 37 runs in AA. Buscher was selected by the Twins in the minor league protion of the 2006 Rule V draft. He played previously in the San Francisco Giants organization.

A Jacksonville, Florida, native, Buscher has a .275 average with the Tigres, with 7 runs on 11 hits in 11 games (40 at bats) while batting in 1 during the first 2 weeks of the season feline.

Slowey posted a 10-5 record for the Wings, with a 1.89 ERA, allowing 31 runs on 110 hits in 133.2 innings pitched through 20 games. Slowey allowed only 4 home runs and walked only 18 batters during 20 appearances with Rochester in 2007.

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