Pedro G. Briceño
The Aguilas of Dominican Republic advance to the final of the Caribbean Series. And they did it in an impressive way.
Carlos Paulino hit a single to center with full sacks to drive in the two laps that turned the score around and provide the Aguilas Cibaeñas with a tight 4-3 victory over the Federales de Chiriquí of Panama in the first of the two semifinals in the Caribbean Classic.
The hit of Paulino, who had come in as a substitute for catching Francisco Peña in the seventh inning, scored Yefri Pérez and Johan Camargo, who were in the third and middle respectively. His historic hit came against veteran Walter Silva, 44, who had relieved Marcos Campos in the sixth act. The 20-season right-hander pitching in baseball in Mexico had done a commendable job.
For the second date in a row, the Quisqueyanos obtained the victory in their last at-bat, because on Thursday, Rangel Ravelo hit the winning hit, an unstoppable to the left field and gave him the 3-2 victory against Colombia.
The success of the Cibaeños leaves behind an erratic defensive game against Panama, in which they committed four blunders, three of them from players like Robinson Canó and Juan Lagares who have gold glove awards in the majors in their portfolio.
The Eagles had reached the ninth inning 2-3 behind a Silva who had dominated the Dominicans, displaying his great repertoire, mixing well his breaking pitches, most of them at the knee.
Ronald Guzmán delivered the first out, Melky Cabrera started the comeback with an unstoppable right and was immediately replaced by the fast Yefry Pérez, who although he was well cared for by Silva, was ripped off the middle, Ravelo delivered the second out, Camargo got a ticket and Junior Lake reached on an infield hit by shortstop to fill the pads and set the stage for Paulino’s hit.
Wirfin Obispo, who entered for Fernando Abad in the ninth after conceding the third round for Panama, was the winning pitcher and Silva the defeated.
With this victory, the Dominicans will now face the winner of the second match of the semifinal that will face Puerto Rico against Mexico. The game started at 11:00 p.m. Dominican time.
The first five innings turned into a great pitching duel between starters Carlos Martínez, for the Aguilas, and Manuel Campos, for the Feds.
The Tsunami had accepted only one hit, which came in the fourth, a double from David Rodríguez after two outs.
While Campos took a hit off Jonathan Villar with one out in the third.
However, the situation was complicated for both in the sixth, Martínez gave a ticket to Rodrigo Orozco opening the entrance and anchored in the anteroom due to a wrong shot that he made at the initial trying to surprise him, then he filled the bases after hitting Allen Córdoba and David Rodríguez, the latter decreed the departure of the Cardinals pitcher, Luis Castillo entered and forced Héctor Gómez to crawl through the anteroom.
In the sixth, the Eagles were able to score against Campos, Juan Lagares and Robinson Canó hit hits in a row after one out and Ronald Guzmán produced a double down the center field that brought his teammates to the pentagon for the first two runs.
But, this advantage did not last long and the Feds matched the actions in the seventh through a single by Rodrigo Vigil, who was retired after a hit by Belarmino Campos, Jhonny Santos crawled through shortstop, who shot Canó, but could not hold the ball and they all came safely, while Orozco singled to right, driving in both laps of the tie.
“I’m going to finish this game.”
When he observed that the stage provided an opportunity for the Eagles to win the match, he informed his colleague Francisco Peña. “I’m going to finish it, I told him,” added the receiver, who said that this is his most important hit of his career.
Cano a terrible defensive series
With the bat, Canó made his contributions for the Quisqueyanos, not so with his defense in which yesterday he made two errors, which reached four in the event. The Eagles committed six in the regular and yesterday they had five
A 10 percent increase in attendance was allowed for the semifinal and final matches.