From BR Bullpen
Rolando Camarero Cruz
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 10", Weight 175 lb.
Camarero debuted with the 1961 Guanajuato Tuzos, hitting only .209 with four homers in the Mexican Center League; he was 1-0 on the hill. Back with Guanajuato in '62, he made major strides, batting .367/.408/.578 - had he qualified, he would have been third in the MCL in average. Promoted to the Mexican League in 1963, Rolando hit .229/.288/.346 as a rookie for the Veracruz Eagle, with whom he would spend the vast majority of his career. In 1964, he improved to .256/.325/.336, followed by .312/.357/.420 in 1965. In 1966, Rolando put up a .310/.363/.418 batting line. The outfielder-second baseman-third baseman just missed the Mexican League's top 10 in batting average.
Camarero hit .264/.323/.350 for Veracruz in 1967 and also got his one look north of the border, going 6 for 37 with two doubles and two walks for the Vancouver Mounties. In '68, he started a streak of 1,168 consecutive games played, a Mexican League record for many years; Gerardo Sánchez broke it in 1996. That summer, he hit .299/.355/.445 between Veracruz and the Poza Rica Oilers. He hit 10 home runs, the first time he reached double-digit dingers; he would be in double digits for the following six years as well.
In 1969, Rolando's batting line was .316/.397/.454 for Veracruz. He scored 91 runs (a career high), drove in 78 and drew a career-best 73 walks (his next best was 52). He also stole a career-high 13, but was gunned down running 12 times. He was 9th in the league in average and second in runs (behind the legendary Hector Espino). Rolando played in 161 games that year, a Mexican League record that still stands.
Camarero had his last .300 season in 1970, .304/.347/.501. He had the best slugging percentage of his career, the most home runs (27, his only time over 20), the most RBI (91) and tied for the most runs (91). He helped lead Veracruz to the championship with his excellent campaign. The outfielder tied for 4th in the LMB in runs, was 4th in homers and ranked fifth in RBI. In '71, he fell off to .237/.296/.377 with 15 homers and 80 RBI. He smashed 18 more home runs in 1972 but hit only .245/.316/.401. For the 1973 Veracruz club, he produced at a .254/.312/.390 rate.
The veteran drove in 75 runs and hit 32 doubles in 1974; he hit .262/.313/.412. He was four doubles behind leader Benjamin Cerda. He split 1975 between the Tampico Lightermen and Aguascalientes Railroadmen, hitting a combined .230/.291/.333. With Aguascalientes in 1976, he batted .224/.272/.310. He made a brief comeback in 1979 with Veracruz, hitting .225/.275/.272 in 73 games.
Overall, Camarero had batted .269/.328/.395 with 147 home runs and 818 RBI in 1,848 Mexican League games and .248 with 49 homers in the Mexican Pacific League. Rolando later managed in the Mexican League for a number of years. He was on the Salón de la Fama ballot for a while, but was removed from the Veterans' ballot after 2009 without winning enshrinement.
- The Mexican League: Comprehensive Player Statistics by Pedro Treto Cisneros
- Assorted Baseball Guides from 1963-1980
- Salon de la Fama