2019 Postseason | Las Tunas and Villa Clara into the Finals
The series only went five games for both Las Tunas and Villa Clara to advance to the Cuban finals. Both teams lost the fourth game after winning the first three but Las Tunas won the fifth game on the road while Villa Clara got to celebrate at home.
Las Tunas beat Ciego de Avila 4-1 in the semifinals to advance to their second consecutive Cuban Finals
Las Tunas defeated Ciego de Avila 4-3 scoring early on a three run homerun by Yosvani Alarcon. Ciego battled back to score two in the second and one in the third, Yorbis Borrotto driving in two. Yoanni Yera for Las Tunas and Lázaro Blanco for Ciego shut down the bats for the next three innings. Las Tunas was able to score their final run in the seventh, getting a gift from right fielder Oscar Colás, who held on to the ball too long and then fired past the catcher to allow the go ahead run to score. Yoalkis Cruz retired Ciego in order in the ninth to clinch the win.
Jorge Johnson and Jorge Aloma each contributed three hits for Las Tunas.
Villa Clara defeated Sancti Spíritus 4-1 in the series advancing to first Cuban Finals since 2013
The game was not so tight in Villa Clara with the Orangeman battering Sancti Spiritus 12-2 to win their semifinals. The game ended after seven innings because of the slaughter rule. Stayler Hernandez, Yurien Vizcaino and William Saavedra each contributed three RBIs in the slaughter.
The Orangeman picked apart Sancti Spiritus with 13 singles and a double in the seven innings and also drew 8 walks. Freddy Alvarez went the full seven innings to pick up the victory.
The 2019 Cuban Finals
Las Tunas will now play Villa Clara in the finals.
Villa Clara last won a championship in 2013. Las Tunas has yet to win a Cuban championship. Granma had won it the last two years and prior to that Ciego de Avila had won back to back.
Sancti Spiritus had last won in 1979, but they were eliminated by Villa Clara. With the many defections it is a changing landscape in Cuban baseball.
If the new agreement between major league baseball and Cuba is allowed to go into effect it will be interesting to see how that will impact the Cuban landscape.
Granma had not won a championship until they went back to back. Now could it be Las Tunas with an opportunity to win their first championship.
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