LPBRC: Hechavarria On An Offensive Tear; Gigantes, Leones Swap Pitchers; Danny Duffy Signs With Santurce

Danny Duffy of the Frisco RoughRiders pitches during the game against the Midland RockHounds at Riders Field on July 08, 2023 in Frisco, Texas. Duffy signed with the Cangrejeros de Santurce in Puerto Rico for the winter. (Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images)

By Conor Liguori
World Baseball Network

The Cangrejeros de Santurce sit atop the Liga de Beisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente standings as the season transitions into December. As each organization approaches its 20th game of the season, the chase for the Caribbean Series draws closer each week.  

Top Performers  

Adeiny Hechavarria, SS – Gigantes de Carolina – The nine-year veteran of Major League Baseball put together an exceptional hitting performance against the Leones de Ponce on November 26, going three-for-three with three RBI and a walk. He hit a two-run single in the bottom of the second inning and another RBI single in the third. Gigantes de Carolina won the contest 11-0.  

Hechavarria hit 37 home runs and had a career .253 batting average while in MLB, and is currently hitting .286 with eight RBI this Liga de Beisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente season for the Gigantes de Carolina.  

Antonio Frias, SP – RA 12 – The RA 12 (6-12) have had a rough start to the 2023-24 season, but starting pitcher Antonio Frias has been a prominent bright spot. He allowed one earned run on one hit over 5.1 innings in RA 12’s 4-1 win against the Leones de Ponce on November 25.  

Frias has an impressive 1.83 ERA through 19.2 innings this season for the RA 12, and has yet to allow a home run. The 2023-24 Liga de Beisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente season is his first in the league after spending the 2022-23 winter season with the Tigres de Chinandega of Liga de Beisbol Profesional Nacional in Nicaragua.  

Daryl Thompson, SP – Indios de Mayaguez – Like Frias, Thompson has performed well this season despite his team’s poor record. He allowed one earned run and struck out four in five innings in his latest start against Gigantes de Carolina on November 22. He was the winning pitcher in the 5-2 game.  

Thompson, 38, is a former eighth-round pick in the 2003 MLB Draft by the Montreal Expos. He only made four combined appearances in Major League Baseball for the Cincinnati Reds in 2008 and 2011 but has played a remarkable 20 seasons of professional baseball across several leagues and levels.  

He is 3-0 with a 2.37 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 19 innings this season for the Indios de Mayaguez.  

Off the Field  

Cangrejeros de Santurce Sign LHP Danny Duffy – Left-handed pitcher Danny Duffy has signed a contract with the Cangrejeros de Santurce for the remainder of the season. Duffy played 11 seasons in Major League Baseball with the Kansas City Royals. He split the 2023 minor league baseball season between Double-A Frisco and Triple-A Round Rock in the Texas Rangers organization.  

This Liga de Beisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente season will be Duffy’s first time playing professional baseball with an organization outside the United States. Still, he did pitch for the United States national baseball team in the 2010 Pan American Games Qualifying Tournament and 2017 World Baseball Classic.  

Duffy owns a career 3.95 ERA with 1,048 strikeouts in 234 appearances in Major League Baseball with the Royals. He joins an impressive Cangrejeros de Santurce pitching staff with a 2.02 ERA on the season.  

Gigantes de Carolina and Leones de Ponce Swap Pitchers – The Gigantes de Carolina have traded relief pitcher Gabriel Rodriguez to the Leones de Ponce for pitcher Osvaldo Berrios and a 2024 second-round pick.  

Rodriguez pitched in just three games for the Gigantes de Carolina during the 2022-23 season, striking out five in three innings. He threw 12 innings for Triple-A Fresno during the 2023 minor league baseball season and went 1-0 with a 9.00 ERA.  

Berrios last pitched in minor league baseball in 2022 for the Lansing Lugnuts, the High-A affiliate of the Oakland Athletics. He went 5-8 with a 6.17 ERA in 93.1 innings. He spent the 2021-22 Liga de Beisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente season with the Cangrejeros de Santurce but appeared in 7.2 innings in six games.  

Current Standings as of November 29  
1. Cangrejeros de Santurce – 12-6  
2. Criollos de Caguas – 11-7  
3. Gigantes de Carolina – 11-7  
4. Leones de Ponce – 9-9  
5. RA 12 – 6-12  
6. Indios de Mayaguez – 5-13  

Upcoming Game Schedule (No Games from December 2-4)  

Thursday, November 30  
6:10 p.m. ET – RA 12 vs. Criollos de Caguas  
6:10 p.m. ET – Indios de Mayaguez vs. Cangrejeros de Santurce  
6:10 p.m. ET – Leones de Ponce vs. Gigantes de Carolina  

Friday, December 1  
6:45 p.m. ET – Indios de Mayaguez vs. Criollos de Caguas  
6:45 p.m. ET – Cangrejeros de Santurce vs. Leones de Ponce  
6:45 p.m. ET – Gigantes de Carolina vs. RA 12  

Tuesday, December 5  
6 p.m. ET – Leones de Ponce vs. Criollos de Caguas  
6 p.m. ET – RA 12 vs. Cangrejeros de Santurce  
6 p.m. ET – Gigantes de Carolina vs. Indios de Mayaguez  

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