Winter Leagues: Gregory Polanco’s Streak Reaches Double Digits

Gregory Polanco has a hit in ten straight games.
Gregory Polanco has a hit in ten straight games.

In the Dominican League on Tuesday night, Gregory Polanco kept his hitting streak going, though he has being doing the minimum the last five games. Polanco now has hit in ten straight games, a streak that started on Opening Day. In his last five games, he is 5-for-21 with one extra base hit, no RBI’s and eight strikeouts. In his first five games, he went 10-for-20 with four doubles, three homers and eight RBI’s, so he has cooled off despite continuing the streak. Polanco went 1-for-5 with a run scored on Tuesday.

Matt Hague went 1-for-4 on Tuesday. He is hitting .296 in 27 AB’s this year and has picked up at least one hit in six of his seven games played.

Atahualpa Severino pitched 2/3 of an inning, allowing one hit and striking out one batter. In five appearances, he has allowed two runs in 3.1 innings with five strikeouts.

In Venezuela, Jhonathan Ramos allowed one run on one hit in 2/3 of an inning. In seven appearances, he has given up four runs in 4.2 innings.

In Mexico, Ali Solis went 0-for-1 with a walk and a sacrifice bunt. He was pinch hit for in the ninth. He is hitting .294 in 34 AB’s

The Australian Baseball League starts tomorrow and the Pittsburgh Pirates are not well represented in the league, though that could change as the season goes along. Sam Kennelly of the Perth Heat and Danny Arribas of the Sydney Blue Sox are the only Pirates farmhands on Opening Day rosters. Neither of their teams play on Thursday. Both teams begin play on Friday, squaring off in a four game series that includes a doubleheader on Saturday.

  • Is Kennelly the young shortstop?

    • Yes he is, still just 17 years old. He was in the Instructional League this year for the Pirates

      • How did Kennelly look at the instructs, overmatched? comfortable? How does he project versus some of the older SS in the lower levels?

        • Tim was supposed to cover the Instructs for the site, but “unfortunately” the Pirates made the playoffs and he missed most of it covering the big team. I talked to Kennelly, but really just got out of it that he learned a lot from the experience and can’t wait to get back for Spring Training.
          What we do know on him is that he was good enough to play in the ABL last year as a 16-year-old, that shouldn’t be overlooked. He then played in an Under 18 tournament and won the MVP award. In the Summer, he played in the Australian Academy League, a prep league for players from Australia. Among regulars in the league, he had the sixth best batting average, showed a little extra base power and made good contact.

          He is definitely a player to watch and if he is getting regular playing time this year in the ABL, that is a good sign. Last year he had 32 AB’s during the ABL season, so you can track his improvement based on how he does this year in the league, keeping in mind he is still one of the youngest players in the league and he is the youngest on his team.

  • Too bad Cutch is no playing winter ball, would like to see Cutch, Marte and Polanco in the same outfield. Did see Polanco in ST, but I don’t remember Cutch and Marte playing with him.
    John do you know if Marte and Polanco will be on the same team when Marte starts.

    • They will be teammates. Last year, Polanco was the backup center fielder to Marte. I expect them both to be playing at the same time this year. I think early in Spring, you’ll get a chance to see the three of them together in the outfield. Seems like something Hurdle would let happen a couple times at least, just so fans gets a glimpse of the not-so-distant future

  • How is it determined which fall league you go to? I’ve been trying to figure it out. Is it based on readiness level, or when you are able to start the league, or a combination? Does the player have much input. I know if I was going to go, I’d much rather go to Australia than, say, Venezuela.

    • Most of the players we mention daily are just going to their home country for the Winter, so they are playing for local teams. Others go where there is opportunity to play regularly. The league in Australia is a little different than the others in that they usually take 3-4 days off from playing during the week, so you’re not getting the consistent work in like the other leagues. The talent level is also a little less there. I’m not sure why there are only two players going to the ABL so far, but I do expect at least a couple more in pitchers Jackson Lodge and Nick Hutchings, because they are both from there.
      For the most part, the players that the team feels could benefit from extra work are asked to play in certain places and it is their right to refuse it. The best assignment for most would be the Arizona Fall Lg. High level of competition, certainty that they will play regularly and they stay stateside.