Cuba Wins Over Taiwan on Despaigne Homer

Evens series 1-1 with Taiwan proffessionals

Taiwan starter Lai, Hung Cheng, gave up the games only run on a homer by Alfredo Despaigne (below). Photo:

HAVANA TIMES — A fourth inning solo homer by Alfredo Despaigne and the shutout pitching of Freddy Asiel Alvarez and a host of relievers gave Cuba a 1-0 win over a host team of Taiwan professionals on Sunday in Taoyuan.

Cuba had lost the exhibition series opener 2-1 in another pitching duel on Saturday.


Asiel cruised through 6.1 allowing only three hits and striking out 5.  Relievers Leonardo Martinez, Vladimir Garcia, Norbeto Gonzalez, Pablo Fernandez, Darien Nuñez and Dalier Hinojsa kept Taiwan scoreless with 7 strikeouts and 3 hits over the final 2.3 innings.

Lai, Hung Cheng took the loss for Taiwan going five strong innings allowing 5 hits including the Despaigne homer.

Outfielder Alexei Bell had two doubles in three at bats for Cuba but failed to cross the plate.  DH Frederich Cepeda and infielder Yulieski Gourriel, the teams 3-4 batters, were once again hitless.

The third game of the exhibition series, seen by Cuba as a tune-up for the March 2013 World Baseball Classic III, takes place on Tuesday.