The Dominican Summer League All-Star game was held Sunday morning and the American League All-Stars won 5-4 in a rain-shortened contest. The Pittsburgh Pirates had three players on the National League squad.
Randy Romero started the game in left field and he went 0-for-2 at the plate. He is hitting .396/.439/.634 in 32 games, with 20 steals in 20 attempts. Romero also plays a strong defensive game and has an nice arm that has led to six assists already.
Fleury Nova grounded out as a pinch-hitter in the seventh inning and he got some brief time in right field before the games was called with two outs in the bottom of the seventh. Nova is hitting .326/.374/.380 in 26 games, with six steals in seven attempts.
Sergio Umana started the game and allowed one run on one hit in his lone inning. That run actually saddled him with the loss. Umana has a 2.08 ERA in his rookie season, with 36 strikeouts and just two walks. The 19-year-old from Nicaragua was signed over the winter after pitching well in a U18 World Cup tournament.
If you’ve followed the DSL this season, you know that the Pirates had a lot of possible All-Stars, but on a 30-man roster which each team sending at least one player, that didn’t leave a lot of room for every deserving player. The league has 45 teams, with 23 being National League affiliates. I didn’t check, but those seven extra players to round out the 30-man roster probably came from seven different teams.
Alexander Mojica would seem like the biggest snub due to his 1.126 OPS, but it’s important to remember that Fleury Nova wasn’t picked over him, they are on different teams. Randy Romero was chosen from the Pirates2 and it’s hard to argue against Romero getting the nod instead when he adds plus speed and strong defense, while ranking .087 behind Mojica in OPS. The Nova selection looks a lot better when you only compare him to Pirates1 players, though I would have went with Juan Jerez.
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.