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Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Winter Leagues: Willy Garcia Homers, Winter Stats For New Players

Last Tuesday, we recapped the first day of the Caribbean Series, which can be viewed here. Today we take a look at the rest of the series, plus the championship series in Australia, as we wrap up the winter coverage until October.

On Tuesday, Willy Garcia had a big game, helping his team to a 6-1 victory over Cuba. He went 3-for-4 with a double and a two-run homer. Rafael Perez had a huge game for the Dominicans, throwing 5.1 scoreless innings. He has allowed just three earned runs in seven playoff starts, dating back to late December. Perez is still a free agent.

On Wednesday, Gorkys Hernandez went 1-for-4 with a double, as Venezuela defeated the Dominican by a 6-5 score. Willy Garcia went 0-for-3 with a walk and run scored in the loss. All the runs in the game were scored in the first two innings.

In Thursday’s action, Gorkys Hernandez had an RBI triple that tied the score, then he scored the go-ahead run in a 6-2 win over Cuba. He also had a single late in the game, which led to Venezuela’s sixth run being scored. Willy Garcia went 0-for-4 with a strikeout, but the Dominican Republic defeated Mexico by a 3-2 score.

On Friday, Gorkys Hernandez went 0-for-3 with a walk and strikeout in his team’s 4-2 win over Mexico. They went a perfect 4-0 in the round robin tournament.

On Saturday, the Dominican Republic took on Mexico in the first semi-final game. Willy Garcia went 2-for-4 with two singles, as the DR lost 5-4 to Mexico. In the nightcap, Gorkys Hernandez went 0-for-4, as Venezuela lost 8-4 after taking a 4-0 lead into the sixth inning against Cuba.

Cuba won the Caribbean Series on Sunday, defeating Mexico by a 3-2 score.

Action Down Under

In the Australian finals on Friday, Sam Kennelly didn’t play in his team’s 3-2 loss in game one, but the game did have a very exciting seventh inning. With Adelaide down 2-0 in the top of the seventh inning, their starter loaded the bases with one out and was left in the game. He got a strikeout and a pop out to get out of trouble, then his teammates hit back-to-back-to-back homers in the bottom of the inning to take the lead and pick up the victory.

Game two was another exciting game, although Sam Kennelly didn’t get to play again. His team won 4-3 in ten innings to force a deciding game three in the series.

In the finale, Perth won 12-5 to take their second straight title. Sam Kennelly didn’t play in the series, as Perth didn’t go to their bench once in the three games. The starting pitcher for Adelaide in the last game was Wilson Lee, who was in the Pirates system for two years, 2011-12. He gave up five earned runs in 1.2 innings and took the loss.

New Players

The Pirates acquired Arquimedes Caminero from the Miami Marlins on Wednesday. He pitched 12 games in the Dominican this winter, posting a 6.23 ERA in 8.2 innings. He allowed 11 hits, six walks and struck out nine batters.

On Thursday, the Pirates traded for third baseman Edward Salcedo, picking him up from the Atlanta Braves. He played in the Arizona Fall League, hitting .260/.314/.385 in 24 games. He played briefly in the Dominican this winter, going 3-for-12 with a homer in three games.

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John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.


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Arguably the Bite’s poorest two game offerings this season. The bats just didn’t get going. But fair play to Perth they played a good series and are the champs.

Caught up with Sam Kennelly before Game 2 and he mentioned how he enjoyed the rookie experience, his wrist was fully recovered and feeling great, was glad to getting some at bats during the stretch, was working on building up his strength and flexibility and was getting the hang of the pinch player role. Looking forward to moving into spring training with a year under the belt. Polite, confident and a good representative for the organisation.


Thanks for that encouraging tidbit ADL! Did you get to see Sam Kennelly play during the regular season, and if so how did he look?


Only saw him in limited action via telecast because he was still rehabing the first time Perth travelled through Adelaide earlier in the season. Ran well. Threw and made ground balls without fuss. Didnt set the world on fire bat wise but generally looked to work counts in pinch hit situations. At 6.3 he is a tall lad and I do wonder what INF position he will eventually fill.

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