Cely: Recapping the 2013 Caribbean World Series in Hermosillo, Mexico

SABR member Monte Cely passed along live updates from the 2013 Caribbean World Series in Hermosillo, Mexico. Here’s his final update on February 11, 2013:

The 2013 Serie del Caribe was the most exciting of the three that I’ve been to so far.  The new format of competition kept teams in contention longer, and assured a meaningful final game.  The impressive new Estadio Sonora was a great venue, plus the sell-out crowds every day added to the excitement.  The Mexican organizers did a great job putting on the event.

Estadio Sonora seemed to “play fair”, with more offense and more home runs generated than in either of the past two years in Mayaguez or Santo Domingo.  Perhaps the dry air and “major league average” dimensions (325′ L and R, 400′ in C) helped generate more offense.

The make-up of the team lineups offered interesting contrasts.  The Dominican team was “loaded” with well-known names such as Hanley Ramirez, Miguel Tejada, Fernando Tatis, Julio Lugo, and Fernando Rodney among others.  On the other end of the spectrum, Puerto Rico had only one player currently on a major league roster – catcher Ramon Castro – and had players from as low as single-A and independent league teams.  The Mexican team had many stars from the Mexican summer league, and also sometimes fielded and all-U.S. outfield of Douglas Clark, Chris Roberson and Marlon Byrd.  Mexico pitcher Luis Mendoza had an ERA of 0.00 and was 2-0 in his two starts.

One of the fun aspects of the Serie del Caribe is that everyone is so accessible.  You may find one of the team managers sitting near you in the stands.  Or perhaps have your picture taken with some of the well-known and colorful fanaticos.  A staple of Mexican games is Enrique “KK” Estrada and his band of matraqueros, who use huge noisemakers (matracas) to rally the Mexican fans and team.

In summary, the Serie del Caribe is an interesting, exciting and different baseball experience for the U.S. fan.  My enjoyment was greatly increased by the camaradarie of my good friend Juan Antonio Jasso Rodriguez and the increasing number of friends that I meet each year.  Thank you Juan; and thanks to all for the great experience.  I hope to see everyone again next year, for Serie del Caribe 2014 on Margarita Island, Venezuela.  Adios y buena suerte!

Read the full recap here: http://chapters.sabr.org/hornsby/research/papers/278

Originally published: February 11, 2013. Last Updated: February 11, 2013.