CARACAS ( Associated Press) – Mexico sealed its spot in the Caribbean Series semifinals on Tuesday by defeating Panama, while Puerto Rico boosted its chances of qualifying by defeating Cuba in a dramatic ninth inning.
Los Caneros de los Mochis defeated Federales de Chiriqui 5–1 and Indios de Mayagüez beat Agricultural de Bayamo 4–3 after squandering an early 3–0 lead.
With these results, Mexico established itself as the leader with a 5–1 record, Puerto Rico improved its mark to 3–3, and Panama fell close behind with a 2–4 record. Cuba, which is still winless, is in last place with one win and five losses.
Later on, Colombia (3-2) and the Dominican Republic (3-2) will face each other, and Venezuela (3-2) and Curaçao (2-3) at the end of the day.
The tournament is played under all-against-all modality over the first seven dates, where the first four qualify for the semi-finals.
The winners of the semi-finals, where the first with fourth in the standings and the second with third, are given the right to play the final on 10 February in the Venezuelan capital.
ceiros 5, federal 1
Irving López – who reached first base on a single and advanced to third base on an error by outfielder Ariel Sandoval – scored the game’s first run on Reynaldo Rodríguez’s sacrifice fly.
The Federals tied the score 1–1 in the fourth on Johnny Santos’s double.
In the fifth inning, José Cardona reached on a single, moved to second on López’s sacrifice bunt, caught third with a steal, and then scored on catcher Iván Herrera’s throwing error.
Starter Braulio Torres-Pérez (1-1) was the winner after giving up five hits and one run over five 2/3 innings. Jake Sanchez (3) made the save. Davis Romero (0-2) pitched the opening and took the loss.
Indian 4, Farmer 3
Los Agriculturales took a 3–0 lead in the second inning on hits by Jordanis Alarcon, Carlos Benitez and Álexquemar Sánchez off starter Daryl Thompson.
The Indians put two away in the fifth quarter with a run-scoring triple by Roberto Enriquez, who promptly scored on a Brian Torres single.
The Puerto Rican ninth did not give up and worked tirelessly to reverse the score, which they achieved in the bottom of the ninth inning with an RBI double from Torres and an RBI hit from Emmanuel Rivera.
Reliever Branden Webb won (1–0) and reliever Andy Vargas lost (1–1).