I saw the Michael Keaton film “Birdman” last night, so forgive me if I have bird-on-the-brain today.
The late, great Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy was a rare bird in 1950s Ireland: a black boy in a sea of white faces. Never short on bravado, Phil called his first Dublin high school band The Black Eagles. And he never stopped flying, from the heights of rock stardom until his 1986 death.
Arise, Black Eagle. Your spirit soars in Maracaibo, in the person of Jose Pirela, a young infielder who showed flashes of promise with the Yankees last season. On Saturday night, Jose “Aguila Negra” (they call him that now) hit a three-run homer for Zulia, as they defeated the Cardenales of Lara 7-0. It was a sort of Black-and-Gold night in Valencia, as former Gold Glover Cesar Izturis (out of MLB in 2014) continued his rebound with the red birds of Barquisimeto. Cesar is 34 now, 10 seasons removed from his Gold Glove season in L.A., but hitting a ton (.334) in Lara.
Speaking of comebacks, a man who began the season in the Majors but quickly lost his job was 2003 World Series hero Alex Gonzalez. On Saturday, he lit up the scoreboard for Caracas with 4 RBI in the Leones’ 10-2 win over the Tigres of Maracay (Lions and Tigers, oh my.)
Ezequiel Carrera had a game of biblical proportions for Magallanes; he was 4-for-5 with crucial run scored in a 3-2 win over the Tiburones. Ronny Cedeño, still bouncing around the fringes of MLB at 31, played for the Navegantes too; he got his 400th LVBP hit this week. And in a column dedicated to thirty-something wonders, the ageless Endy Chavez looks to return this Thursday for Magallanes when they travel to Caracas.
Thanks for reading!