Tigers Roar in the Venezuelan Winter League

Four games have been played in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. And the Venezuelan Detroit Tigers are making a difference.

The Caracas Lions (Leones del Caracas), the Magellan Navigators (Navagantes del Magallanes), the La Guaira Sharks (Tiburones de La Guaira) and the Anzoátegui Caribs (Caribes de Anzoátegui) will be evaluating the performances of the embedded players from the Detroit farm teams.

Justin Henry, who spent last season with the Triple-A Toledo Mud Hens as an outfielder arrived in condition to play with the Zulia Eagles (Aguilas del Zulia) and in the four games, had five hits in 14 at-bats, plus four runs scored and three walks to establish a .357 average. The team resides in 2nd place winning three of their first four.

Nuiman Romero also arrived with experience from the Tigers Double-A affiliate, the Erie Seawolves. Currently captain of his team after 4 games, he has gone 7-for-17 with three doubles, four runs, four RBI's and three strikeouts, averaging .412.

Victor Larez, joins the Caracas Lions (Leones del Caracas), after a season as crowned champion in the Florida State League with the Lakeland Flying Tigers. He has had two appearances with the Lions over 2 1/3 innings allowing one hit, a walk and striking out two.

Eugenio Suarez, joins Victor Larez, bringing his stellar defense to Caracas after a year with the West Michigan Whitecaps.. He began the season as a starter in the lineup batting 9th as the team's shortstop. Last, Friday, he went 0-for-1 with an RBI. In the second week he was removed from the roster.

Hernan Perez, also is with the Caracas Lions after a brief appearance with Detroit and playing a part on the Lakeland Flying Tigers Championship team. His first week he was 2-for-8, batting .250. Also on the roster without appearances are Luis Angel Sanz who in 2012 played at both A and A+ levels and catcher Luis Alberto Sanz who played at A+ and AA.

Jose Ortega, is with the Magellan Navigators (Navagantes del Magallanes), with big league experience and spending the final part of the season with the Mud Hens. Finding his place in the bullpen on Saturday, he gave up five hits, one run, two walks and two strikeouts in his 2 1/3 innings (0.00 ERA).

Bruce Rondon, confidently again on the mound for the Magellan Navigators has thrown two innings with two saves allowing only one hit, one run and a strikeout. His ERA stands at 4.50.

Argenio Diaz, most recently with Toledo, is also with the Navigators. He has played in three of the four games, but is off to a slow start, just 1-for-9 with two strikeouts and an average of .111.

Michael Torrealba, who some call the next "Rookie of the Year" joined the La Guaira Sharks (Tiburones de La Guaira). A right-hander coming from the West Michigan Whitecaps is now ready to win with his new team. So far he has 2 K's and an ERA of 0.00.

The information provided is sourced from Venezuelan journalist Kimberlin Correa. English is not her first language and this report has been updated for ease of reading. No facts or direct information has been altered or omitted from her valued report. Also thanks to Roger DeWitt for his contributions.

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