I don't know if Cuba's performance in Premier 12 will be talked about for a long time. I don't know if there is anything left to say different from the last international tournaments. Maybe he had never hit so little. Or that the bank players were more bank than ever. Because the rest was more of the same: defeats and a game that is far from the best baseball in the world the same miles from here to South Korea.
We always knew it was a very demanding tournament for the team we are leading. The data provided by several experts confirmed our precompetence criterion: two triumphs in the group stage would be an overflow of their potential.
When the last game ended, Miguel Borroto gave each player a hug and congratulated him. There were those who were surprised, even in the foreign press, by the helmsman's gesture. An old baseball man, tanned in the Cuban seasons and in professional leagues, opted for the recognition of the delivery, than for the critics, with no intention of expressing conformity. After all, it was no secret to him that advancing to the superronda was an emotional purpose rather than a serious prediction, even though his boys played 150 percent of their chances.
With the mentor of the national team we talked through social networks, a while after the last out in front of South Korea.
–What is your assessment of the result of the team?
It was a very short, strong tournament, with only three games in the first round, all in less than 48 hours, and in this type of competition you have to have stability in the lineup. Canada has won us the last games, Australia brought a team that is not second to anyone and South Korea is the current champion.
«We moved the pitchers as we had planned, but with such a poor batting there was no way to execute tactical actions to build careers. We looked for an alignment trying to harmonize batting with defense with those who had better sports form.
“Only South Korea averaged over .200, pitching was very dominant. That pitcher from Canada has become a wall for our batters, in the Can-Am League they only gave him a jit, from Cesar Prieto as emerging ».
–Very offensive: two grouts, three runs in almost 28 innings.
– Nobody hit, except Samon, put whoever put the result I don't think it was another, because those who were in the bank were the ones who had hit the least in the Chinese Taipei tour.
–And why didn't the bank move anymore?
—After we beat Australia, I didn't want to decentralize the team by changing the lineup. A manager must have equanimity, the technical group thoroughly studied all the options and put the alignment that we consider best.
–There is talk of Saavedra …
—But in what position would he place him, if Samon was first, the one who hit the best in the championship? Pavel (Quesada) was wrong on the Taipei tour of China and (Alexander) Ayala did very well in that position.
–Gracial and Despaigne were also below their potential and what they yielded in Japan. A great connoisseur of baseball told me that it was logical that they were out of rhythm, after more than a week without playing, that they had lowered their tensions after winning the Japan Series and that that influenced their performance in the Premier …
"I don't disagree with that criterion, but after we summoned them and what they had done in their league, we never thought of moving them third and fourth in such a short series, I respect men with history, and they both are." If we brought them to play, maybe it would have been advisable not to bring them in those conditions.
–Are you dissatisfied with what your team did?
"I was dissatisfied if I had lost with South Korea with another alignment, what would they have said about me then?" I would be dissatisfied if there had been indisciplines, apathy, if the athletes had not delivered everything they have as a capacity to seek victory.
«This result is the reflection of our baseball, of the National Series. Our pitchers have potentials, but their level is below that shown by the other teams, made up of professional players, from their national leagues, which are very good, and others with contracts in minor leagues or with major league experience.
“We had to employ our best pitchers in the two initial games and that also influenced the final clash, the only one that ended with an open score in the group.
«We did not lose the classification in the last game, Canada was more affordable and if we had done a few more races or had avoided two, we would have benefited from the tiebreaker system.
«From the competitive point of view it was not possible to advance from the first phase, but I am happy with the boys, there was discipline in the group, rapport, they never stopped looking for victory, they suffered like us every defeat, with them we collect every decision We even take into account your criteria before forming the alignment. That's why I gave each one a hug. I don't think they stopped contributing what they could to rivals that were superior.
–Do you think that rebuilding the team is the solution to improve international results?
—All that is done in favor of the approach of the players who for various reasons are in foreign leagues will be of vital importance. These players were trained by our instructors, despite the lack of resources at the base, and we must encourage them to join the national team, based on the premise that they train together, and I am sure that we will compete on equal terms with Rivals in any competition.
«Baseball is a sport for prepared men and not just inspired. No director is a magician to achieve victories with a team that is not in the best conditions to achieve them ».
Analysis of the launch-to-launch trends of the Cuba team's games compared to the other members of its Premier 12 group:
Team with fewer pitches observed by appearance at bat (3.72).
Highest percentage of swings made of total releases (53 percent).
Highest percentage of swings made at the first launch (36 percent).
Team with the highest percentage of swings made of the total launches seen outside the area of strike (36.1 pr percent).
Lower percentage of balls sung from the total pitches seen (32 percent).
Equipment with the highest percentage of connections rolling (60 percent).
Summary: These trends increase the chances of striking out, decrease the chances of reaching a base by BB and reduce the chances of connecting jit or extrabase. Therefore, it is more difficult to run.
Team that uses more pitches per batter (3.91) and per game (155).
Team with the highest percentage of sung balls of the total throws (43 percent).
Team with the highest percentage of balls sung at the first pitch (50 percent), while only 21 percent of the batters faced swing at the first launch (the lowest percentage among the analyzed teams).
Team with the highest percentage of lines allowed (connection most likely to become hit): 24 percent.
Equipment with the lowest percentage of rollings allowed (37 percent).
Statistics collected using the Strike Zone software developed by the master Alfredo Rios Fuentes and collaborators of the Baseball Research Group (GIIB).