Cuban national baseball league championship series to be live-streamed exclusively by WBSC's GameTime channel, opens 28 March

Cuban national baseball league championship series to be live-streamed exclusively by WBSC's GameTime channel, opens 28 March
25/03/2021
Defending champions Cocodrilos de Matanzas will play the Alazanes de Granma at José Antonio Huelga Stadium in Sancti Spiritus.

GameTime Sport, the World Baseball Softball Confederation's OTT platform, has the exclusive international streaming rights for the champion series of the Cuba's national baseball league (Serie Nacional de Béisbol), one of the most historic and iconic leagues in the world. Thanks to the help of Mediapro Productions, GameTime Sport will feature all games in the best-of-seven final series.

The 60th Serie Nacional will begin on Sunday, 28 March with the defending champions Cocodrilos de Matanzas playing the Alazanes de Granma. The games are scheduled to take place at José Antonio Huelga Stadium in Sancti Spiritus. Granma earned home-team advantage.

Granma outscored 52-28 Pinar del Rio in six games in their semifinal showdown. They clinched the final with a 13-3 win on 27 February.

Manager Carlos Marti, who led Granma to back-to-back titles in 2017 and 2018, can count on veteran catcher Ariel Pestano, an Olympic gold medalist and a former Baseball World Cup champion.

Infielders Guillermo Aviles (13 home runs and a .371 batting average) and Lazaro Cedeno (11 homer runs and a .331 batting average) were the best hitters of the regular-season.

Joel Mojen (9 wins) and Cesar Garcia (7) appear to be the top pitchers of the rotation.

Matanzas defeated Las Tunas in six games in the semifinals after falling behind 2-0 in the series. The club managed by Armando Ferrer, who led Matanzas to their first-ever title in 2020, clinched the final with a 6-3 win on 14 March. A home run by veteran shortstop Erisber Arruebarruena was the tie-breaker.

Arruebarruena (pictured in the feature image) represented Cuba internationally on many occasions. He made his debut at the top level at the 2011 Baseball World Cup, and was on Cuba's roster at the WBSC Premier12 2019.

Other notable players on the Cocodrilos' roster are outfielder Willian Luis, who hit 12 home runs during the regular season, and infielders Jefferson Delgado (.354 batting average) and Yariel Duque (eight homers, .358 batting average).

Reinier Rivero, a 24-year righthander, went the distance in a key 1-0 win in Game Three. He won 10 games during the regular season. Yoanni Yera went six innings in Game Five to earn the win against star Carlos Juan Viera.

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Cuba's Serie Nacional was founded in 1961. Since 1993, the league has 16 participating teams, one representing each province and one (the Industriales) for the capital city Havana. The Industriales have won a league-leading 12 titles. Former superstar center fielder Victor Mesa led them to their last pennant in 2010.

Cuba is currently No.7 in WBSC Baseball World Rankings.


Premier12 2019