Cardinals Winter Leagues Notebook: Wk 6, Pt 1

Results from Cardinals prospects competing last week in Australia, the Dominican, Mexico and Puerto Rico. Luis Mateo is swinging a hot bat in PR.

Australian League

Perth Heat –
Perth returned home from the Asia Series to go 2-1 against Melbourne before traveling to Sydney where they split a four-game set. The Heat remain in first place with a 7-3 overall record, one and a-half games in front of Brisbane.
- Adam Melker: Melker started and hit second in all seven of Perth's contests, three in left and four in center. He singled three times in 26 at bats with a walk, three runs scored, four RBI's (one via a sac fly) and six strikeouts for a line of .115/.172/.115/.288 with a .143 Batting Average for Balls In Play (BABIP). Melker was also plunked once.
Season-to-date: .263/.356/.368/.724, 38 AB, 10 R, 9 H, 1 2B, 1 HR, 5 RBI, 4 BB, 9 SO, 0 SB, 0 CS, .310 BABIP

Sydney Blue Sox –
Sydney was off the week-end of November 17th before hosting Perth, as mentioned in the Heat's write-up. The Blue Sox have an overall mark of 5-5, good for a third-place tie with Melbourne, two games behind Perth.
- Geoff Klein: Klein was the starting catcher in all four games for Sydney. The Blue Sox' number five batter had four singles in 16 at bats with an intentional base-on-balls and five strikeouts, .250/.294/.250/.544. He drove in four runs and had a .364 BABIP.
Season-to-date: .216/.256/.216/.473, 37 AB, 1R, 8 H, 4 RBI, 3 BB, 8 SO, 0 SB, 0 CS, .276 BABIP

Dominican (Winter) League
The biggest news out of the Dominican Winter League is likely that Manny Ramirez joined Aguilas on Wednesday, November 14th. Closer to home, St. Louis reliever Victor Marte is now a teammate of Maikel Cleto on Licey's staff. Catcher Juan Castillo joined Escogido's Dominican Instructional League (DIL) team. Stats are through games of November 27th.

Aguilas Cibaenas –
Aguilas went 6-5 with one postponement since the last report. Manny Ramirez is Aguilas' designated hitter, batting clean-up.
- Audry Perez: out with a right knee injury
- Oscar Taveras: Taveras has been in a real slump since returning to action on November 3rd following the death of his grandmother. Over his last 11 games, he went 8-for-38 with just one extra-base hit, a home run, for a line of .211/.326/.289/.616 with a .212 BABIP. Taveras did have more walks (six) than strikeouts (five) and was 1-for-2 in stolen base attempts. After being moved around in the batting order, the right fielder has mainly been batting fifth behind Manny Ramirez.
Season-to-date: .295/.370/.467/.836, 105 AB, 19 R, 31 H, 4 2B, 1 3B, 4 HR, 13 RBI, 11 BB, 14 SO, 3 SB, 1 CS, 3 E, .307 BABIP

Gigantes del Cibao –
The Gigantes had 11 games and went 4-7.
- Ronny Gil: Gil appeared in five games for the Gigantes, including his first back-to-back starts of the season. He was a late-inning defensive replacement at short on the 14th and did not get at hit in his sole at bat. On the 20th he pinch ran after Cibao's first baseman led off the 10th with a single. Gil did his part by stealing second and advancing to third on a ground out but was left there. He singled and scored in a 4-3 loss on the 25th after entering the contest as the second baseman in the seventh inning. Gil had one of only four hits by his squad in a start at second on Monday then went 0-for-4 as the starting second baseman on Tuesday. For the period, he singled twice in nine at bats with a run scored, one stolen base, two strikeouts and an error, .222/.222/.222/.444.
Season-to-date: .300/.300/.450/.750, 20 AB, 4 R, 6 H, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 0 BB, 4 SO, 2 SB, 1 CS, .333 BABIP

Leones del Escogido –
Escogido went 7-3 with two postponements, which is a vast improvement from the 0-6 mark they notched in the prior period.
- Keith Butler: After two shaky appearances the prior week, Butler rebounded with a strong effort on the 15th. The righty threw two perfect frames in an 8-2 win. Butler struck out two with two fly outs and a line out. Two days later he tossed a scoreless seventh in a tie game, facing the minimum after a runner that got on via two-out single was erased by a caught stealing. On the 20th Butler again relieved in the seventh, yielding a solo shot that closed the gap to a single tally in an eventual 7-5 victory. Butler faced a tougher assignment on Saturday, the 24th, when he entered the sixth with runners on second and third with no outs. A one-out single plated both runners and saddled the Leones with a 4-3 loss. For the period, the 23-year-old yielded three hits in five frames over four appearances with a solo blast accounting for the only tally given up, to go with four strikeouts and a free pass issued for a 1.80 ERA/4.80 FIP, 0.80 WHIP, .200 BAA, .200 BABIP.
Season-to-date: 1.50 ERA/5.53 FIP, 6 G, 0 GS, 6 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 HR, 1 HB, 2 BB, 4 SO, 1.00 WHIP, .211 BAA, .214 BABIP
- Juan Castillo: As has been mentioned in prior reports, information out of the Dominican Instructional League is hit-and-miss. The first mention of Castillo came in an undated article discussing a game on the 18th or 19th in which Castillo went 1-for-1. He also started and caught an exhibition game against Indiana University where he committed an error.
- Starlin Rodriguez: Rodriguez has not played since November 2nd.
Season-to-date: .250/.250/.250/.500, 4 AB, 1 H, 1 R, 1 RBI, 0 BB, 2 SO, 0 SB, 0 CS, .500 BABIP

Tigres del Licey –
Licey went 3-9 with one postponement with Cardinals hurlers being credited with two of those victories and charged with one of the losses although Cleto contributed to another loss as well.
- Maikel Cleto: Cleto took the loss on the 16th when he gave up an unearned run in the bottom of the ninth on a two-out fielding error, walk and run-scoring single. He froze two inherited runners in the eighth when he fanned a batter for the third out. On the 19th Cleto was the third pitcher in the bottom of the ninth, an inning began by Victor Marte, and wild pitched the winning run across without officially facing a batter. He yielded a run on two hits on the 24th before having his best outing of the period on Monday. Cleto earned his first win against two losses by retiring all seven batters faced while preventing two inherited runners from scoring. He threw 4.2 total innings in four appearances, and was charged with two runs, one earned, on four hits and a base-on-balls with one victory and one loss. Cleto fanned three and had a 1.93 ERA/2.56 FIP, 1.07 WHIP, .222 BAA and .267 BABIP
Season-to-date: 1.13 ERA/3.83 FIP, 8 G, 0 GS, 8 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 0 HR, 0 HB, 5 BB, 5 SO, 1.13 WHIP, .129 BAA, .154 BABIP
- Victor Marte: Marte walked the first batter faced in his debut on the 14th with the runner promptly stealing second. After fanning the right-handed batter swinging, Marte intentionally put on the switch-hitting clean-up batter. A line out to left and ground out to first ended the game, a 7-5 loss. On November 19th he began the ninth with his team up 5-1 and could not work around a two-out fielding error, allowing four runs, one earned, on three hits and a wild pitch. Two of the four tallies touched home after Marte had departed the contest. He picked up the win in Sunday's 6-4 triumph by tossing a 1-2-3 eighth then watching as his teammates scored four in the ninth to flip a 4-2 deficit.
Season-to-date: 3.38 ERA/4.32 FIP, 3 G, 0 GS, 2.2 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 0 HR, 0 HB, 2 BB, 3 SO, 1.88 WHIP, .250 BAA, .333 BABIP
- Willy Paulino: Paulino tossed a scoreless seventh on either the 18th or 19th then relieved again on the 21st, a game for which a box score exists. Paulino entered the top of the eighth with two outs and a runner on second and notched a swinging K to end the frame. He gave up two hits to start the ninth before retiring the next three batters, one of them a strikeout.

Mexican Pacific League
Stats are through games of November 27th.

Caneros de Los Mochis –
The Caneros went 3-8 for the period.
- Jermaine Curtis: Curtis was the Caneros' starting third baseman for all 11 games, primarily batting second. Offensively, he followed up his superb performance for the period November 8th through 14th with a slump. Curtis had 11 hits, including two doubles and a home run, in 43 at bats with four free passes and six K's. He scored eight runs and drove in five, including one by a sac fly. Curtis' line: .256/.313/.372/.584 with a .270 BABIP.
Season-to-date: .302/.367/.385/.752, 96 AB, 13 R, 29 H, 5 2B, 1 HR, 14 RBI, 10 BB, 13 SO, 1 SB, 2 CS, .333 BABIP

Venados de Mazatlan –
Mazatlan went 4-7 for the sixth consecutive reporting period with a losing record.
- Nick Additon: Additon had two starts since the last report, a very good one on the 17th and a sub-par one on the 25th. The only tally he gave up on the 17th came in the first via two of the four hits he yielded. The southpaw fanned five with three free passes issued on 102 pitches, 67 for strikes. Additon retired nine of the first ten batters he faced on the 25th but could not finish the fourth. He coughed up consecutive doubles to bring across one, then allowed a two-run bomb for two more runs. Five tallies eventually crossed that framed, three of them earned, on four hits and two free passes. Additon struck out four. His combined stats for the two starts: 3.86 ERA/4.27 FIP, 2 G, 2 GS, 9.1 IP, 8 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 1 HR, 5 BB, 9 SO, 1.39 WHIP, .229 BAA, .280 BABIP
Season-to-date: 4.35 ERA/3.63 FIP, 8 G, 8 GS, 39.1 IP, 41 H, 22 R, 19 ER, 2 HR, 2 HB, 16 BB, 33 SO, 1.45 WHIP, .270 BAA, .331 BABIP

Puerto Rican League
Stats are through games of November 27th.

Criollos de Caguas –
Caguas went 6-1 with two games postponed due to rain.
- Luis Mateo: Mateo was the starting shortstop in all seven contests, batting either seventh or eighth. He had 11 hits in 29 at bats, including a double and a walk, for a line of .379/.400/.414/.814 with a .500 BABIP. The 22-year-old scored four times and drove in three with seven strikeouts, a stolen base and two errors.
Season-to-date: .341/.388/.386/.774, 44 AB, 6 R, 15 H, 2 2B, 4 RBI, 4 BB, 9 SO, 2 SB, 0 CS, .417 BABIP

Gigantes de Carolina –
Carolina went 2-5 with three postponements.
- Juan Caballero: Caballero's sole appearance to date came on the 15th when he took over a two-on, none out jam with his team up 9-2. The Puerto Rican native got a fly out to left before issuing a base-on-balls to load the bases. An infield single to second brought across one run ahead of a called strikeout. A fielding error by the Gigantes' first baseman produced two more runs although both were unearned. The 20-year-old finished with a fly out to center.
- Anthony Garcia: Garcia started four games for Carolina, three in right and one in left in addition to two other appearances. He was a late-inning replacement in right on the 15th and walked in his only at bat. Consecutive starts on the 17th and 18th ensued with Garcia having his best game of the period on the 17th when he singled and blasted a solo shot in three at bats. On Saturday Garcia pinch hit in the ninth with the tying run on first and grounded into a double play to end the game. Overall, he put up a line of .267/.353/.467/.820, 4-for-15 with a home run plus another driven in, two walks, four strikeouts and a .300 BABIP.
Season-to-date: .364/.440/.545/.985, 22 AB, 3 R, 8 H, 1 2B, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 2 BB, 5 SO, 0 SB, 1 CS, .438 BABIP

Atenienses de Manati –
Manati went 5-2 with three postponements.
- Iden Nazario: Nazario has yet to pitch for Manati

Indios de Mayaguez –
Mayaguez went 4-3 with three games postponed.
- Hector Hernandez: The only Hernandez sighting was on Saturday, the 24th when the southpaw entered the seventh with the sacks jammed and one out. A single to right, base-on-balls and sac fly brought across all three runners and finished Hernandez' outing. Both of the runners attributed to him eventually scored as well.
Season-to-date: 16.20 ERA/6.79 FIP, 4 G, 0 GS, 1.2 IP, 2 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 HR, 0 HB, 2 BB, 0 SO, 2.40 WHIP, .500 BAA, .400 BABIP

Coming soon: Part two of this report will cover Cardinals prospects' results the past week in the Venezuelan and Venezuelan Parallel Leagues.

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