VSL Cardinals Notebook: 2010 Week Four

Catcher Gerwuins Velazco had five RBI for the Venezuelan Summer League Cardinals this past week.

The Venezuelan Summer League ended a four-game losing streak by winning the first four games of the period, but lost the last one.  The team is 7-13 and sits five games out in last place.  They are 4-6 at home and 3-7 on the road.


The Cardinals were supposed to take on the Pirates for a doubleheader to begin the week, but rain washed it out.


The Cardinals then hosted the Rays and jumped out in front early, scoring three runs in the first three innings.  The Rays however added three runs of their own in the next two frames and the Redbirds added another three in the sixth.  The Rays might have out hit the Cardinals, but the Cards pulled off the win 6-3.  Gerwuins Velazco hammered out a three-run shot and Jhonan Acevedo had a double and two RBIs.  Deimer Bier struck out six over four innings and Alberth Almeida allowed just one run over the last five frames.


The Cardinals went on the road to take on the Tigers in the next contest.  The Redbirds tacked on three runs in the first three innings and that was pretty much all they needed.  They did however add on another two and the Tigers showed signs of life late in the game but still ended up losing 5-2.  Jem Argenal hit a solo home run and Gerwuins Velazco added two RBIs.  Fermin Montanez had his best start of the season pitching seven scoreless innings.


The following game the Cardinals hosted the Phillies and had to make a late comeback to win.  The Redbirds were the first to score but the Phils plated three runs (through the contest) to take the lead in the top of the ninth.  The Cardinals pushed two across in the bottom of the ninth for the 4-3 victory.  Marlon Sucre had three hits and one RBI and Jem Argenal doubled and drove in a run.  Ramon Ulacio allowed one run over seven innings.


The Cardinals had the day off on June 10th.


The Reds welcomed in the Cardinals for what would be the only game played for the day.  The Reds probably wished it would have been rained out prior to when it was.  The Redbirds stomped the Reds 15-4, even scoring seven in the fourth inning.  The contest was called in the sixth.  Breyvic Valera and Jose Gomez each doubled and drove in three runs.  Jem Argenal hit a two-run home run and Jhonan Acevedo had a double and two RBIs.


In the final game of this period, the Cardinals were again shut down by a former signee.  Vincente Campos and the Mariners hosted the Redbirds and only gave up two hits to the team.  Campos struck out nine over five innings.  Silfredo Garcia did a fine job before the game was called, only allowing one run over four innings. 



Who's Hot


Breyvic Valera had his on base streak ended at 19 games this past week.  The 18-year old switch-hitter went 7-for-16 (.438) with two doubles, four RBIs, seven runs, three walks, one hit by pitch, seven runs, one sac fly, four strikeouts, and one caught stealing. He played two games at shortstop (assisted in one double play) and three games at second base (assisted in two double plays).  The rookie VSL player leads the team in batting average (.397), on base percentage (.471), slugging (.507) and OPS (.977).


Marlon Sucre finally got in the swing in the past couple of weeks.  The 20-year old right-handed hitter went 7-for-17 (.412) with two doubles, three RBIs, four runs, two walks, one hit by pitch, one stolen base, and five strikeouts.  He played all five games in right field.  The former DSL Dodger is currently batting .239 with six doubles, one home run, and ten RBIs.


Gerwuins Velazco didn't collect too many hits, but when he did, he made them count.  The 19-year old right-handed hitter went 3-for-15 (.200) with one home run, five RBIs, three runs, two walks, and one strikeout.  He played all five games behind the plate, throwing out one of three base runners.  The July 5, 2008 signee leads the team in RBIs.


Jem Argenal managed to turn thing around this past week.  The 18-year old left-handed hitter went 4-for-14 (.286) with two doubles, two home runs, four RBIs, four runs, four walks, four strikeouts, and one caught stealing.  He played three games in left field, one as designated hitter, and one between both left and first base.  The November 25, 2008 signee is currently batting .227 with three doubles, two home runs, and 12 RBIs.


Ramon Ulacio bounced back this week after being thumped the previous period.  The 19-year old right-hander made his latest start on June 9th.  He pitched seven innings allowing seven hits, one earned run, one walk, and struck two out.  The January 27, 2009 signee had a ground out-to-fly out ratio of 14-to-3.  Ulacio leads the team in innings pitched.


Fermin Montanez is gradually finding his groove in the VSL Cardinals rotation.  The 19-year old right-hander made his start on June 8th, tossing seven scoreless innings, giving up four hits, striking out two, and picked one runner off for the winning decision (1-2).  He had a ground out-to-fly out ratio of 11-to-6.  The July 4, 2009 signee has the best ERA among the starting rotation.



Who's Not


Limbert Rivas has a four-game on base streak, but not all are hits.  The 20-year old right-handed hitter went 2-for-12 (.167) with two RBIs, two runs, four walks, two sacrifices, one hit by pitch, and three strikeouts.  He played four games at first base (assisting in five double plays) and one between both first and catcher. 


Ronnierd Garcia has struck out at least once in his past seven consecutive games.  The 20-year old right-handed hitter went 3-for-16 (.188) with one RBI, two runs, one walk, and seven strikeouts.  He played all five games at the hot corner for the Cardinals.  The August 31, 2009 signee currently leads the team in strikeouts.


Jhonatan Escudero has two good appearances and then has one bad, this week wasn't the good one.  The 16-year old right-hander came in on relief on June 9th, allowing two hits, two earned runs, and three walks.  One of the runs, the following pitcher was not able to keep on base.  The October 1, 2009 signee has walked ten and struck out eight over ten innings.


Dail Villanueva didn't impress in his return to starting.  The 20-year old left-hander made his start on June 11th, allowing four hits, four earned runs, one home run, walked four, hit two batters, threw one wild pitch, and struck out three for the winning decision (1-0).  He had a ground out-to-fly out ratio of 4-to-4.


Jackson Solarte also didn't look too pretty in his second appearance.  The 19-year old right-hander was called on for relief on June 8th.  He gave up three hits, two earned runs, one walk, and struck three out.  The May 30, 2008 signee had a ground out-to-fly out ratio of 3-to-1.



The Happenings


Jose Martinez and John De Aguas have yet to make their appearances this season.


Edubray Ramos has not played since May 18th, Geudy Guerra since May 24th, Johnny Polanco since May 26th, Hayrich Martina since May 31st, Jose Perez and Kender Villegas since June 2nd, Anderson Gerdel and Kevin Cueto since June 4th, Ismael Brito since June 5th, and Manuel Marquez since June 8th.


Roberto Canache was signed and made his professional debut on June 11th.


Jose Calero, Roberto Perez, and Gerardo Mambell were released from extended spring training.  All three came up through the Venezuelan pipeline.  Mambell was the 2008 co-VSL Player of the Year.  Perez received considerations for the 2009 VSL Player of the Year and won a gold glove the same year.  Both Calero and Perez are, at this time still, employed by Caribes de Anzoategui in the Venzeulan League.



Venezuelan Summer League Stats


The Cardinals are batting .249 (5th in the league) with a .337 OBP (t-5th), .332 SLG (6th), and .669 OPS (6th).  The team is first in strikeouts; second in walks; third in runs scored, doubles, and RBIs; fourth in home runs (tied) and total bases; and fifth in hits.


The Cardinals pitching has a 5.13 ERA (7th) and 1.45 WHIP (5th).  The team is first in hits allowed and earned runs, second in runs allowed (tied) and hit batters, fourth in walks allowed, and fifth in strikeouts.


Brevyic Valera is first in batting average, runs, hits, tied for second in doubles, tied for second in triples, third in total bases, tied for eighth in stolen bases, first in OBP, sixth in SLG, and second in OPS.

Lainer Bueno is tied for seventh in runs and tied for sixth in walks.

Marlon Sucre is tied for second in doubles, tied for tenth in home runs, and tied for ninth in RBIs.

Gerwuins Velazco is tied for seventh in doubles, tied for fifth in home runs, second in RBIs, tied for seventh in total bases, and tied for eighth in walks.

Jem Argenal is tied for fifth in home runs and tied for fifth in RBIs.

Limbert Rivas is tied for tenth in home runs and tied for sixth in walks.

Ramon Ulacio is seventh in innings pitched.

Deimer Bier is tied for third in strikeouts.

Douglas Planchart is tied for ninth in strikeouts.

Fermin Montanez is tenth in WHIP.



Up Next


June 13: Pirates (9-6, 0-1)

June 14: @ Rays (9-10, 3-1)

June 15: Tigers (9-9, 1-2)

June 16: @ Phillies (8-9, 2-1)

June 17: Off Day

June 18: Reds (11-10, 3-0)

June 19: Mariners (12-8, 3-0)



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