Mexico’s Marquez, Leyva Comment On Ninth Inning Controversy Regarding Pitcher’s Eligibility

Luis Marquez of Mexico’s Naranjeros de Hermosillo reacts during Mexico’s 9-1 win against the Dominican Republic Sunday. (Photo Courtesy of the CBPC)

By Leif Skodnick
World Baseball Network

MIAMI – Two media outlets, Con La Bases Llenas and Pelota Cubana USA, caught up with members of the Naranjeros de Hermosillo regarding Luis Marquez coming in from the bullpen and not being allowed to pitch the ninth inning against Panama on Saturday afternoon.

“They said that the list of available players didn’t show up. And [they]told me, you have to retire, you can’t throw,” Marquez told Con Las Bases Llenas on Sunday.

Marquez entered the game for Mexico against the Federales de Chiriqui of Panama in the bottom of the ninth inning with Mexico clinging to a 3-1 lead. After Marquez was asked to leave, Jake Sanchez came in and threw .2 innings, giving up three runs on three hits, hitting one batter, blowing the save and taking the loss.

“Apparently, he wasn’t on the list of players available for the game. I don’t know exactly what the situation was. I imagine it was the opposition,” Naranjeros de Hermosillo bullpen coach Elian Leyva told Pelota Cubana USA’s Yussef Diaz. “He’s the [best closer]of the Arco League… I think it was just a matter of disagreement. But I think that Panama also deserves a lot of credit.”

On Sunday, it was reported that Mexico was protesting the game. Generally, if a protest is upheld, the game would be replayed from the point of the protest – so if it were to be ruled that Marquez should have been allowed to pitch, the game would be replayed starting in the bottom of the ninth with Mexico leading Panama 3-1.

LoanDepot Park Is a Sturdy Building – A cacophony of warning klaxon sounds erupted from the mobile phones of all in attendance at Sunday morning’s game between Nicaragua and Panama when the National Weather Service issued a tornado warning that included most of Dade County, which includes Miami. Nonetheless, the game continued, with the severe weather outside barely noticeable to the 12,342 inside LoanDepot Park.

New Life In Old Mexico – Didi Gregorius, the former New York Yankees infielder who is playing for Curacao at the 2024 Caribbean Series, is looking to play in the United States this summer, he told Con Las Bases Llenas this week.

However, he said, if he can’t draw interest from a team in the U.S., he hopes to play in Mexico, as he did last summer following his release by the Philadelphia Phillies.

Gregorius played for the Algodoneros de Union Laguna, based in Torreon, Coahuila, Mexico, after his release, batting .359/.432/.777 with a 1.208 OPS in 26 games, hitting 11 homers and driving in 34 runs.

He signed a minor league deal with the Seattle Mariners in August, appearing in 25 games for Triple-A Tacoma, batting .192/.282/.337 with three homers and 10 RBI.

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