The Tigres de Quintana Roo (Cancun) (42-54) defeated the Bravos de León (40-56) 7-4 at Estadio Domingo Santana in León on July 30.
The Bravos took a 2-0 lead with an RBI single by 1B Dan Johnson (Coon Rapids, MN) and a sacrifice fly by 2B Carlos Valencia in the bottom of the first inning. They loaded the bases with nobody out in the third inning with singles by Johnson and Valencia, and a bunt single by RF Leandro Castro. However, the next batter, SS Niko Vasquez, hit into a double play. Johnson scored, and the Bravos didn’t score again until the bottom of the ninth.
The Tigres got to starter RHP Mitch Lively in the top of the fourth. Lively hit 3B Brian Hernandez. One of Hernandez’ hands was injured. He couldn’t stay in the game, so he was replaced by 2B Abel Martinez. Martinez was forced out at second on a ground ball by 2B-3B Osniel Madera. The next batter, DH C.J. Retherford, hit a fly ball to right field. Castro made a good effort to get to the ball, but didn’t hold onto it long enough. (A review confirmed this.) Madera went to third on the play, then scored on a single by LF Ramon R. Ramirez. The next batter, C Francisco Cordoba, hit a fly ball to left field. Again, LF Gilberto Mejia made a great effort to get a glove on the ball, but he couldn’t hold on, and Retherford scored.
The Tigres tied the game in the top of the fifth on a sacrifice fly by Martinez. Then, Retherford led off the sixth inning with a home run that bounced off the scoreboard. That chased Lively, and with the exception of RHP Jahir Perez, who pitched a perfect ninth inning, the Bravos’ bullpen was ordinary. Lively’s replacement, RHP Fernando Villalobos, gave up the winning run when Cordoba doubled, went to third on a wild pitch, and scored on a sacrifice bunt by CF Brandon Villarreal. The Tigres added runs in the seventh and eighth on an RBI double by Ramirez and a home run by 1B Jesus Valenzuela, respectively.
The Bravos missed several scoring chances, in addition to the double play ball by Vasquez. C Omar Renteria opened the bottom of the fourth with a single. The next batter, DH Eduardo Arredondo, made a bunt attempt that became a popup on the right side. Fortunately, none of the Tigres got to it. A few pitches later, another bunt attempt went straight to the mound. The pitcher threw to second to force out Renteria. It was a close play, but a review showed that he was out. The Tigres got another double play in the fifth, and the inning ended with a good catch by Sergio Contreras of a ball hit to right field by Vasquez. The Bravos stranded two runners in the eighth when Arredondo grounded out to end the inning. The got a run in the bottom of the ninth on a sacrifice fly by Valencia, but the game ended when Castro hit as line drive to the pitcher, with a runner on first.
Tigres starter RHP Jesse Estrada got the win, pitched five innings, allowed three runs on eight hits, struck out one. Lively (Susanville, CA) got the loss, only his second of the season. He has an ERA of 2.13, lowest on the team.
Ramirez finished 2-for-5 with two RBI for the Tigres. Johnson finished 2-for-3 with an RBI.
The Bravos made two great catches in the seventh inning. Vasquez dived to catch a popup by Martinez. 3B Miguel Torrero caught a ground ball hit by Retherford, but his throw pulled the first baseman off the bag.
box score play-by-play
Tigres reliever Jesus Garcia, who faced only one batter, put on a very good dancing exhibition between the seventh and eight innings.
The Tigres hold fourth place and the final playoff spot in the South Division. The Bravos are now two games behind them, with nine games left to play. The Bravos were 14-10 for the month of July.
Castro (Dominican Republic) was in the Phillies organization 2007-14. Vasquez (Oxnard, CA) was drafted in the third round by the Cardinals in 2008, was in the Cardinals organization 2008-12.
The Tigres are owned by former Dodgers star Fernando Valenzuela. Estrada (El Paso, TX) was in the Cubs organization 2005-09. Hernandez (Van Nuys, CA) played college ball at UC Irvine, was in the Angels organization 2011-15. Martinez was in the Royals organization in 2000. Madera (Cuba) played for Pinar del Rio in the Cuban National Series, 2005-15. Retherford (Homestead, FL) played for Arizona State, was in the White Sox organization 2007-13. He played for the Piratas de Campeche earlier this season. Contreras was in the Angels organization 1999-2003.
Bravos official site
Tigres de Quintana Roo official site