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Cuba opens Serie del Caribe with victory over Mexico

Cuba opens Serie del Caribe with victory over MexicoHAVANA, Cuba, Feb 6 (acn) Supported mainly by the pitching performance of Lazaro Blanco and timely batting of LF Alfredo Despaigne, the Cuban side of Las Tunas Leñadores beat 3-1 the Jalisco Charros, from Mexico, in their debut in the 2019 Caribbean Baseball Series based in Panama.

Blanco earned the win, his third in Caribbean Series, after pitching seven scoreless innings allowing only three hits, with one walk and three strikeouts.
Meanwhile, clean-up hitter Despaigne batted 3 for 4 and drove in the three runs of his team, while 2B Jorge Aloma also highlighted offensively by the Cuban squad when hitting 2 for 4.
LHP Livan Moinello relieved Blanco in the eighth frame, but was removed from the mound after surrendering a walk and one hit, but then reliever Vladimir Garcia struck out pinch hitter Sebastian Valle and forced leadoff hitter Alonso Harris to bat for a double-play.
Right-hander Garcia came into complications in the ninth after allowing two hits and, with outs, closer Raidel Martinez allowed an RBI-single by Jesus Valdes but then he dominated Jesus Murillo, thus getting the save.
The loss went to American Will Oliver, who surrendered three runs and six hits in 4.2 innings.
Las Tunas will face today the Lara Cardenales, from Venezuela, in a duel of unbeaten teams where Cuban manager Pablo Civil announced right hander Freddy Asiel Alvarez as starting pitcher.
Today´s other game will be between the Dominican side of the Estrellas Orientales and the local of Herrera Toros.

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