LBPRC: Mayaguez, Carolina Face Off In Finals

By Matthew Tallarini
World Baseball Network
Jan. 17, 2023

Gigantes de Carolina, who eliminated Cangrejeros de Santurce 3-1 in game seven of their semifinals series in the Puerto Rican Liga Beisbol Profesional de Roberto Clemente Monday night, will face Indios de Mayaguez in the championship series.

The best-of-seven series begins tonight, when the Indios visit the Gigantes at Estadio Roberto Clemente in Carolina.

Carolina last made the final in 2006-07, the second year of back-to-back championships for the Gigantes. This is the Gigantes ninth appearance in the finals. Gigantes finished the regular season in second place at 28-22 before making an improbable run in the playoffs under manager Edwards Guzman. 

On the mound, Carolina was led by veteran Hector Santiago, who went 5-3 in nine starts, posting a 3.83 ERA while striking out 49 and walking 17 in 47 innings pitched. Freddie Cabrera, 4-2, posted a 3.02 ERA in 10 starts and striking out 23 while walking nine in 53.2 innings. At the dish, Adeiny Hechevarria hit .322/.420/.458 in 18 games with Carolina.

Gigantes was on the brink of elimination Monday night at Roberto Clemente Stadium. Santurce and Carolina were tied until the bottom half of the sixth inning, when Brian Navarreto drove a single to center field, scoring Osvaldo Martinez. One batter later, Anderson Feliz singled home Navarreto and Ruben Castro for a 3-0 lead which Carolina would not relinquish.

Indios de Mayaguez finished fourth place in the regular season at 26-24, but that did not stop them from making their fifth consecutive finals appearance. Mayaguez went six games in their best-of-seven semifinal series against Criollos de Caguas with manager Mako Oliveras, and finished their semifinal series on Saturday, enough to get a few rest days before the final. 

Emmanuel Rivera, who split the 2022 Major League season between Kansas City and Arizona, batted .303/.340/.338 for Mayaguez, with 43 hits in 142 at-bats. Former Milwaukee farmhand Braden Webb returned to Mayaguez for his second season with the Indios, making 14 appearances and 10 starts, throwing 61.2 IP with a 2.19 ERA, striking out 65 and issuing 24 walks while also earning a save and a 4-4 record.

The winner of the championship series will represent Puerto Rico at the Caribbean Series, which runs from February 2-10 in Caracas, Venezuela.

Liga Beisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente Championship Series
Game 1 – Tuesday, January 17 – Mayaguez @ Carolina – 8:10 p.m. ET
Game 2 – Wednesday, January 18 – Carolina @ Mayaguez – 8:10 p.m. ET
Game 3 – Friday, January 20 – Mayaguez @ Carolina – 8:10 p.m. ET 
Game 4 – Saturday, January 21 – Carolina @ Mayaguez – 8:10 p.m. ET
Game 5 – Sunday, January 22 – Mayaguez @ Carolina – 8:10 p.m. ET 
Game 6 – Tuesday, January 24 – Carolina @ Mayaguez – 8:10 p.m. ET
Game 7 – Wednesday, January 25 – Mayaguez @ Carolina – 8:10 p.m. ET

Games can be streamed (with audio in Spanish) for a fee via by clicking here.

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