Universo Deportivo

Around the Farm - December 27, 2016: Dominican playoffs kick off

The Dominican Winter League playoffs kicked off on Tuesday, but despite the three-hit effort from Ronny Rodriguez, Aguilas fell in their first contest of the tournament. The IBI's Jake Dungan discusses that and the other winter ball highlights from the evening.

Around the Farm (ATF) takes a quick look at some of yesterday’s performances by Indians players throughout the system. This is a special fall and winter ball version of ATF that recaps all the offseason action by Indians players in the Caribbean Leagues and Arizona Fall League. The positions listed below are where the player was playing in yesterday’s game.

Dominican Winter League

Ronny Rodriguez (2B, Aguilas Cibaenas): 3-4, 1 2B, 1 SB. Rodriguez was the lone hitter in Cibaenas' lineup who managed to string together multiple hits as they fell 4-1 to Licey on Tuesday in the first game of the Dominican Winter League playoffs. The Indians infielder got the tournament off to a good start, however, recording three hits including a double and a stolen base. Rodriguez finished the regular season batting .306 with three homers and 12 RBI's in 44 games.

Venezuelan Winter League

Yandy Diaz (CF, Leones del Caracas): 1-3, 2 R, 1 RBI, 2 BB. A typical day at the office for Yandy Diaz either involves multiple hits or multiple walks (or both). On Tuesday, Diaz may have only logged one hit, but he still managed to draw a pair of walks as his average and on-base percentage over his last 10 games are an even .400 and .500, respectively. His regular playing time in center field is also ongoing, which continues to raise questions and speculation as to which position he'll play long term moving forward.

Jesus Aguilar (1B, Leones del Caracas): 0-5, 2 K. Aguilar had a rare quiet night going 0-for-5 with two strikeouts as Caracas fell 6-4 to Zulia. Even with this performance, however, Aguilar is still batting .400 over his last 10 games with four homers and eight RBI's. Overall, the Venezuelan slugger is batting .309 with 10 homers and 22 RBI's in 41 games in winter ball this year. He also has an equal number of walks and strikeouts at 27.

Asdrubal Cabrera (2B, Leones del Caracas): 2-4, 1 BB, 1 K. Cabrera is just getting his winter ball campaign started as he has only played in nine games thus far in Venezuela. On Tuesday, the former Indian notched a pair of hits marking just his second and third in those nine games up to this point. Cabrera spent 2016 with the Mets where he batted .280 with 23 homers and 62 RBI's in 141 games.

Luis Valbuena (1B, Cardenales de Lara): 1-2, 2 BB. Another former Tribesman was in action on Tuesday in the form of veteran infielder Luis Valbuena appeared in just his sixth game for Cardenales de Lara and recorded his seventh hit of the campaign so far, adding up to a .350 batting mark with no homers, two doubles and two RBI's. In 90 games with Houston this season, Valbuena batted .260 with 13 homers and 40 RBI's. The 31-year-old is currently a free agent.

Puerto Rican League

Alexis Pantoja (SS, Tiburones de Aguadilla): 0-3. Pantoja has been on a hot streak as of late, but things cooled off momentarily on Tuesday as the young Tribe infielder went 0-for-3. Over his last 10 games, however, the 20-year-old has batted .429 with multi-hit efforts in half of those contests. Pantoja has now raised his offseason average to .333, but only has four extra-base hits in 28 games with six RBI's.

Jake Dungan is the Managing Editor for IBI and a podcast host on the Smoke Signals Network. Email him at jdungan@indiansbaseballinsider.com or follow him on Twitter @JakeDBaseball

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