After six weeks of play in the 2008 Venezuelan Summer League, the VSL Cardinals rookie-level club has a 17-16-2 record, in fifth, 4.5 games out of first place in the eight-team league.
The Venezuelan Summer League
Cardinals came into the sixth week of the 2008 season with a three game winning
steak, but that all reversed as they went on a three game losing binge to start
the week. The squad would go 1-4-1
on the week; yes another tie on the season. I ask, why can't we go beyond the 11
inning limit to break a tie? The
Cardinals dropped to 5th place in the Venezuelan Summer League with a
17-16-2 record and are 4 ½ games out of first.
The Cardinals went on a road trip
to visit the Phillies to begin the week.
They got some great starting pitching, but the bullpen didn't hold and
the hitting was just not there. The
Cardinals would only get five hits in the game, serving up 13 in a 5-1
loss. Next they faced the Mariners,
as the Cards were held again to only one run and committed three errors at home
in a 4-1 loss. The Cardinals then
hit the road to face the last place Tigers and the same result occurred as the
last game. Only one run scored and
three errors were committed as the Tigers won 4-1.
The club then ended the three game
slide with a 5-4 victory over the Mets, who are currently a half game ahead in
the standings. The Cardinals got
some almost perfect pitching from their starter and the team had nine hits and
only one error. The bullpen almost
gave up the game but a couple solid arms from past contests came through to hold
the game and a 10th inning hit would end it. The last game for the week, played at
home, ended in a 2-2 tie with the Rays.
Can't say it was a great thing since the Cardinals could not capitalize
on the three errors committed by their opponent. There was solid pitching, but runs just
did not cross the plate.
Gerardo Mannbel had an up and down week. The 18-year-old shortstop/second baseman
had hits in his first two games for the week then went 0-for the next two. He has however rebounded to collect
three hits in his last two games.
The right-handed hitter went 6-for-20 (.300) with two doubles, three
walks, and two strike outs.
Overall, a productive week for the 5'11" 165 pound
Alberto Rivero also had a slower week, unlike
the last. The 19-year old
outfielder went 6-for-21 (.286) with one triple, two RBIs, four walks, two runs,
three strike outs and was caught stealing twice. But the left-handed hitter has gotten on
base the last 12 straight games and is carrying a three-game hitting streak into
the next week.
Moises Colorado returned this past week. I'm assuming he has been out with an
injury. The 18-year-old pitcher is
gradually being eased back into his past role with the squad. The lefty made his return on June 18,
only pitching 2/3 of an inning allowing no hits or runs getting two ground outs
and holding his inherited runner on base.
The next night, the 6'3" 170 pound Venezuelan made his second appearance
of the week only pitching 1/3 of an inning; he faced four batters, walking
three. Then on June 21 we saw better results as he pitched two innings of relief
striking out all six batters faced.
Javier Avendano made another impressive start for
the VSL Cardinals this past week.
On June 19, the 17-year old right-handed starter and pitched a solid five
innings allowing only one hit and no runs while striking out six. He also did give up four walks and lay
claim to a balk in the outing. In
eight appearances (seven starts), Avendano has posted a 1-1 record with an
astounding 2.25 ERA. In his last
six starts he has lasted four or more innings.
Carlos Noguera made two starts this past week
for the VSL squad, both decent and worth mentioning. The 19-year old right-hander opened the
week for the Cardinals on June 16, going five innings allowing seven hits, two
(earned) runs, two wild pitches, one home run, and striking out one en route to
a loss (0-2 on the season). The
6'0" 175 pound Venezuelan would also end the week for the Cardinals on June 21
as he pitched six innings allowing four hits, two (earned) runs, one hit batter,
one home run, and striking out three in a tie with the Rays. Over the past month as he moved into the
rotation, Noguera has increased his innings pitched, gradually moving from four
to now five-to-six innings now.
Wilfred Vivas is struggling at the plate this
season. The 18-year old second
baseman had a very good week the week before, but this past week went cold. The right-handed hitter went 1-for-17
(.059) with one run, one stolen base, and four strike outs. He's hitting .145 with one double, ten
runs, one RBI, and 13 strike outs in 62 at-bats on the
Billy Bolivar has also gone into a slump since
beginning the season on the right foot.
This last week the 20-year old utility player went 2-for-16 (.125) with
three runs, three walks, one stolen base, and four strike outs. The third-year VSL participant has only
collected three hits in his last 30 at-bats.
Fabian Marquez, who had a great start to his 2008
season, was rocked this period. The
16-year old reliever made two appearances this week. The first came on June 16 as he went two
innings allowing five hits and three (earned) runs. The next was June 20 as he pitched only
1/3 of an inning allowing four hits, two (earned) runs, one home run, and
striking out one before being pulled.
Deimer Bier was roughed up in his only start
of the week. The 17-year old
right-hander made his turn in the rotation on June 20, lasting only four innings
allowing seven hits, four (three earned) runs, one walk, one home run, and
striking out one en route to a loss.
The 6'2" 174 pound Venezuelan has posted a 1-1 record with a 3.23 ERA in
eight appearances (seven starts) on the 2008 season.
The VSL Cardinals hitting took a
couple steps back this week dropping their average to .241. The team is last in doubles and triples
overall. Their home run total fell
to a tie for third in the league.
Their walks total is at 126 good enough for third overall. All other totals sit where they have sat
The team's ERA improved to 3.36,
now third best in the league. All
other pitching total stats sit where they have been all year. Another positive note: They still are
the best at not hitting batters with 20 and their WHIP is 1.35.
Gerardo Mannbel is
with a .328 batting average, tied for 3rd with 41 hits,
5th with four home runs, 4th with 62 total bases,
5th with 18 walks, 7th with a .432 OBP, 7th
with a .496 SLG, and 5th with a .928 OPS.
Alberto Rivero is tied for 3rd with
three triples and tied for 7th with 21 RBIs.
Cristofher Dumont is tied for 8th with
three home runs.
Hector Corpas is tied for tied for
2nd with four wins
David Brito is tied for 2nd with
Javier Avendano is 11th with a 2.25
Yonathan Gonzalez is 3rd with five
Carlos Noguera is 4th with 36 innings
Moises Colorado is 4th with 32
Geney Rios is 9th with 26
Deimer Bier is 9th with a 1.14
Life after VSL in 2008...Moving On
C/1B Ismael Cardona, 3B
Kleininger Teran, SS Ted Obregon, P Omar Diaz, and P
Orlando Munoz were assigned to the Rookie-Level GCL
P Jose Calero and OF/DH
Cristofher Dumont were on the original GCL
roster provided by the Cardinals, but have yet to appear there.
P Richard Castillo was
assigned to A-Advanced Palm Beach, later re-assigned to Single-A Quad
P Jorge Rondon was assigned
to Rookie-Level Johnson City.
June 23: @ Astros (16-19,
June 24: Phillies (18-14-3,
June 25: @ Mariners 20-13-1,
June 26: Off
June 27: Tigers (8-26-1,
June 28: @ Mets (18-16,
VSL Official Site: http://www.vsl.com.ve/
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