By José Alejandro Rodríguez Zas
On the morning of Thursday, January 26, the Cuban Baseball Federation (FCB for its Spanish acronyms) officially announced the roster of Team Agricultores (champions of the 1st Elite League) that will represent Cuba in the Gran Caracas 2023 Caribbean Baseball Series, to be held next February in Venezuela.
The team is made up of 2 catchers, 7 infielders, 7 outfielders and 12 pitchers, based on the roster of the Agricultores team that was crowned champion of the recently concluded I Elite League of Cuban Baseball, after defeating Portuarios in the best-of-seven final series.
In addition, the team’s manager, veteran Carlos Martí, together with his management team, selected a total of five reinforcements in key areas for the team, mainly in the pitching staff.
These are the cases of outfielder Denis Laza (Portuarios), along with pitchers Andy Vargas (Portuarios-Industriales), Jonathan Carbó (Tabacaleros-La Isla) and Alexander Valiente (Cafetaleros-Guantánamo), while Raico Santos, also from Granma, joins the team from the Mexican League, after not participating in the Elite League.
It is worth noting that none of the players who appear in the roster of Team Cuba for the World Baseball Classic will participate in the Serie del Caribe.
“The schedule reserves for Agricultores its debut on February 2 at 10:30 a.m. (local time) against Curacao. Then they will face Dominican Republic (day 3), Venezuela (4), Mexico (5), Colombia (6), Puerto Rico (7) and Panama (8),” reported the aforementioned media outlet, in what will be the return of Cuba to the Caribbean Series after not attending the last three versions (2020-2022).
“The semifinals will be played by the best four teams of the preliminary round and will be held on Thursday, February 9, on a 1-4 and 3-2 basis. The medals will be disputed on Friday 10,” he added.
Without further ado, here we leave you with the Agricultores team that will represent Cuba in the Gran Caracas 2023 Caribbean Series:
Catchers (2): Rafael Viñales (No. 34) and Yosvani Alarcón (11). Infielders (7): Carlos Benítez (5), Osvaldo Abreu (52), Guillermo Avilés (21), Andrés De La Cruz (6), Yordanis Alarcón (10), Yulián Milán (4) and Yosvanys Millán (13). Outfielders (7): Denis Peña (28), Darián Palma (2), Alexquemer Sánchez (22), Dailier Peña (32), Yunieski Larduet (56), Raico Santos (18) and Denis Laza (27). Pitchers (12): Leandro Martínez (71), Kelbis Rodríguez (16), Yoel Mogena (78), Yunier Castillo (89), Carlos Santana (74), Alberto Pablo Civil (23), César García (9), Miguel David Paradelo (14), Ángel Sánchez (54), Andy Vargas (42), Jonathan Carbó (62) and Alexander Valiente (20).