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Curacao Shocks Puerto Rico at CACG, D.R. Improves to 3-1

 Leif Skodnick  |    Jun 29th, 2023 12:19pm EDT

By Matthew Tallarini & Julian Guilarte
World Baseball Network

Curacao defeated Puerto Rico 3-2 on June 28 in walk-off fashion in seven innings at Saturnino Bengoa National Baseball Stadium. 

Curaçao’s designated hitter, Ortwin Pieternella, led off the seventh with a double against Puerto Rico relief pitcher Ivan Houellemont. Houellemont the intentionally walked first baseman Roderick Bernadina before leaving the game after a third of an inning.

Freddie Cabrera came in for Puerto Rico and produced a ground out, and Puerto Rico was one out away from going to extra innings. They then intentionally walked Andrelton Simmons to load the bases, and the next batter, left fielder Ericson Leonora, won the game with an RBI single.

Curaçao scored their first run in the second when Bernadina hit an RBI single that scored center fielder Raysheandall Michel. Curaçao got their second run in the fifth when Bernadina scored on an error by Puerto Rico’s second baseman Jesmuel Valentin.

Puerto Rico’s only two runs came in the third on an RBI double from catcher Ruben Castro that scored shortstop Jeremy Rivera and an RBI single from first baseman Kevin Luciano scored Castro.

Puerto Rico starter Bryan Marrero pitched five innings, giving up one earned run. Curaçao’s starting pitcher Je-andrick Lourens pitched just 2.1 innings and gave up two runs. 

Curaçao (3-1) will play their next game against Nicaragua at 9 p.m. ET on June 29. Puerto Rico (1-3) will play their next game against Mexico at 6 p.m. ET on June 29.

Venezuela surges late for a 4-1 win against Nicaragua

Venezuela defeated Nicaragua 4-1 on June 28.  Both teams were locked in a pitcher’s duel for most of the contest. Nicaragua scored the first run of the game in the second with an RBI single from catcher Rodolfo Bone brought center fielder Juan Montes.

Nicaragua was held scoreless with just one hit for the rest of the game. Venezuela used a creative approach, throwing five relievers throughout the seven-inning contest. Nicaragua’s starting pitcher Jesus Garrido threw five innings of one-run ball.  

Venezuela’s offense erupted for three runs in the sixth. The first run came when center fielder Cesar Ortega was hit by a pitch. The second run came on an RBI single by first baseman Jose Ortega that brought in Anderson Melendez. Venezuela’s third run of the sixth came on a sacrifice fly from shortstop Michael Chirinos which brought in Melendez.

Venezuela added an insurance run in the seventh with an RBI single from right fielder Juan Infante that brought in third baseman Junnel Ledezma.

Venezuela (3-1) will play their next game against the host nation El Salvador at 11:30 a.m. ET on June 30. Nicaragua (1-3) will play their next game against Curaçao June 29 at 9 p.m. ET.

Dominican Republic wins 6-2 Against Mexico

The Dominican Republic won 6-2 against Mexico and handed their first loss of the Central American and Caribbean Games.

The Dominican Republic jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the second. Center fielder Edgar Figueroa had an RBI single to drive in right fielder Seully Matias for the first run. Shortstop Adrian Valerio delivered the big blow with the grand slam, scoring designated hitter Wildert Pujols, center fielder Edgar Figueroa and catcher Carlos Paulino.

The Dominican Republic added another run in the third with a sacrifice fly from Kelvin Pena to score Pujols. The D.R. was up 6-0 after three innings.

Mexico got two runs in the fourth on a triple from right fielder Fernando Villegas that scored designated hitter Rainel Rosario and first baseman Victor Mendoza.  

The Dominican Republic starter, Yelmison Peralta, pitched 3.1 innings, giving up two runs. Mexico’s Yoanner Negrin got roughed up, lasting just 1.1 innings and giving up five runs.

Mexico (3-1) will play Puerto Rico (1-3) on June 29 at 6 p.m. ET. The Dominican Republic (2-1) will play Cuba (1-2) on June 29 at 1 p.m. ET and also played (0-2) El Salvador in their second game on Wednesday due to their rainout on Tuesday. 

Dominican Republic improves to 3-1 after beating host nation El Salvador 6-2 

The 10th-ranked Dominican Republic got on the board early in the bottom of the first inning when second baseman Luis Valenzuela launched a two-run home run to right field, scoring first baseman Darlin German to make it 2-0. 

In the top of the fifth inning, 59th-ranked El Salvador made it a little interesting, tying the game up at two when second baseman Cesar Ceron ripped an RBI single to the right side, scoring right fielder Anselmo Joya to cut the deficit to 2-1. 

A few batters later, shortstop Melvin Deras drew a walk with the bases loaded and Emerson Bonilla came in to score to tie the game up at two a piece. 

Dominican Republic starter Felipe Rodriguez was taken out after throwing 4.2 innings allowing two hits, two earned runs, walking four, and striking out five. 

During the bottom of the fifth inning, the Dominican Republic scored four runs, beginning with German getting hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, and Carlos Jimenez came in to score to take the lead at 3-2. 

A few batters later, right fielder Seully Matias extended the lead to three runs when he drove a two-run RBI single through the right side of the infield, scoring catcher Eric Gonzalez and center fielder Edgar Figueroa to put the D.R. up 5-2. 

El Salvador starting pitcher Jose Roca did not have his mechanics up to par during Wednesday’s game as he threw 4.1 innings allowing two hits, five earned runs, walking two, and striking out five, along with taking the loss. 

Dominican Republic pitcher Joell Cesar cruised the rest of the way in his second inning of relief as he got left fielder Wilfredo Jimenez to strike out swinging for the final out of the game to beat El Salvador 6-2. 

The Dominican Republic (3-1) will play Cuba (1-2) at 3 p.m. EDT on Thursday. El Salvador (0-3) will play Cuba (1-2) at 12 p.m. EDT on Thursday.

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Leif Skodnick