2015-2016 Cuban National League
The finals began April 6 with Ciego de Ávila jumping to a 6-0 lead after two; Pinar del Río starter Wilber Pérez lasted only 1/3 of an inning (2 BB, H, 3 R) and two other relievers that frame and the next did not better. RF José Adolis García drove in 3 and 3B Yeniet Pérez scored 3 while Vladimir García notched the win in a 9-4 decision. In game 2, there was a lot closer contest at Estadio José Ramón Cepero. In the top of the 4th, LF Guillermo Aviles drove in 1B Yorelvis Charles for the only run off Vladimir Baños in 7 innings. In the bottom of the 8th, Pinar del Río had their first tie score of the finals when CF Reinier León scored an unearned run. It was the only run allowed by Lázaro Blanco in 7 1/3 IP and he gave up just two hits. The relievers were equally sharp as Yunier Cano (Ciego de Ávila) and Liván Moinelo (Pinar del Río) traded goose eggs from the 8th through the top of the 13th. In the bottom of the 13th, Moinelo finally cracked, as backup CF Yoelvis Fiss drove in DH Ariel Borrero with the winner.
In game 3, the action moved to Estadio Capitán San Luis on April 10. The Tigres went up 3-0 in the series, going up 6-0 like in game 1 and holding that lead after 6 1/2 before Pinar del Río rallied to lose by one run, 6-5. Dachel Duquesne got the win with one run despite 9 hits in 6 1/3 IP to beat Yosvani Torres while Cano got a save. C Osvaldo Vázquez scored two and drove in two for the victors while 3B Yordanis Alarcón, SS Michael González and DH Yusniel Ibáñez all went deep in a losing cause. The Vegueros continued that late momentum into game 4 to prevent a sweep in a 6-3 win. León went 3 for 3 to support the pitching of Erlis Casanova (W) while Moinelo got the save. Game 1 victor Vladimir García took the loss after going 13-3 so far between the regular season and postseason but only one of the four runs off him was earned.
Pinar del Río won game 5 in a 8-7 nailbiter, surviving four runs in the 9th, as Moinelo fanned 2 of 4 batters he faced to put it away for the save. Baños got the win and Blanco did not look like his game 2 self with the loss (5 R in 4 1/3 IP). 2B Andy Sarduy was 3 for 3 with a double, triple, run and four RBI for an explosive game for the Vegueros. In game 6, Pinar del Río dispensed with the drama, toasting Vladimir García for five in the first, led by a 3-run dinger from Yordanis Alarcón. Yosvani Torres got the win and Moinelo the save. For the first time, a team had rallied from a 3 games to 0 deficit in the Serie Nacional finals to tie it.
With everything riding on game 7, the Tigres found new life as Despaigne allowed six hits and no walks in 7 shutout frames (though he fanned 0) to go to 3-0, 0.44 on the postseason and win postseason MVP. Cano finished it off by retiring all six batters he faced. Meanwhile, Pinar del Río allowed eight runs, with Casanova giving up 2 in 2 2/3 IP in a short start for the loss. LF Luis Robert, RF José Adolis García and DH Aviles each had a run and two RBI in the romp, with Aviles going deep off Baños.
|Team||Classification Phase||Secondary Phase||Manager|
|Ciego de Ávila||31-14||23-18||Roger Machado|
|Pinar del Rio||29-16||22-19||Jorge Gallardo|
|Las Tunas||26-19||17-24||Ermidelio Urrutia|
|Isla de la Juventud||25-20||15-25||Jose Luis Rodríguez Pantoja|
|Villa Clara||22-23||--||Vladimir Hernández Solas|
|Sancti Spíritus||22-23||--||Mario Zulueta|
|Santiago de Cuba||15-30||--||Alcides Sánchez|
- Pinar del Rio 4, Matanzas 3
- Ciego de Ávila 4, Industriales 0
- Championship Series
- Ciego de Ávila 4, Pinar del Rio 3
- Bold indicates either wooden bat record or aluminum bat record (1976-1977 to 1998-1999), Italics indicate Serie Nacional record
Where two teams are listed, the player switched teams at the half
On December 12, 2015, the 2015-16 All-Star Game took place at Estadio Julio Antonio Mella in Victoria de las Tunas, Las Tunas. The game was cut short in the top of the 5th due to a rain-out. The Occidentales were cruising with a 5-0 lead, thanks to a 3-run homer by Yurisbel Gracial and four innings of no-hit pitching from Erlis Casanova, Yosvani Torres, Wilber Pérez and Vladimir Baños.
José Adolis García of Ciego de Ávila was named Serie Nacional MVP after leading the league in RBI and finishing in the top 10 in homers, doubles, runs, steals and slugging. Yoandy Cruz of Pinar del Rio is named Serie Nacional Rookie of the Year after going 7-2 with a 3.72 ERA.
Postseason All-Stars were C Yosvani Alarcón (Las Tunas), 1B William Saavedra (Pinar del Rio), 2B Carlos Benítez (Granma), SS Yorbis Borroto (Ciego de Ávila), 3B Yurisbel Gracial (Matanzas),OF Yohandry Urgellés (Artemisa), OF Guillermo Avilés (Granma), OF Lázaro Ramírez (Villa Clara), UT Yunior Paumier (Holguín), DH Michel Gorguet (Holguín), RHP Freddy Asiel Alvarez (Villa Clara) and LHP Liván Moinelo (Pinar del Río).
Gold Glove awards went to C Osvaldo Vázquez (Ciego de Ávila)), 1B Yunier Mendoza (Sancti Spíritus), 2B Dayner Gálvez (Isla de la Juventud), SS Yordan Manduley (Holguín), 3B Yeniet Pérez (Villa Clara), OF José Adolis García (Ciego de Ávila), OF Reinier León (Pinar del Río) and OF Jorge Johnson (Las Tunas).