En este momento estás viendo Pinar del Río pitchers Liván Moinelo and Erly Casanova ready for Elite League semifinals

Pinar del Río pitchers Liván Moinelo and Erly Casanova ready for Elite League semifinals

Pinar del Río pitchers Liván Moinelo and Erly Casanova are ready to reinforce the Artemisa team during the semifinal of the Second Elite League of Cuban Baseball, scheduled to begin on January 6.

After undergoing surgery for an elbow injury in his pitching arm during the season in Japan, Moinelo worked on his rehabilitation with pitching coach José Manuel Cortina for 16 weeks.

«I feel in perfect condition. I’m already at 70 to 80 percent. I have trained hard with Professor Cortina throughout these months at the Capitán San Luis stadium,» he said.

The 28-year-old back-lower told Cubadebate the reasons why he would play with Artemisa. «As a result of my injury in Japan and when I had already been rehabilitating here for more than a month I told the guys from Artemisa that if everything went well I would pitch four or five games in Cuba and that it would be with them. This will represent a preview of how I feel, besides, I will do my best to make them champions this year

Pitching coach José Manuel Cortina worked with Moinelo on strengthening the flexor and extensor muscles, «because he had not pitched for a long time. And little by little, we patiently increased his arm strength and explosiveness levels,» said the 73-year-old coach.

Cortina explained to Cubadebate that he not only emphasized the physical aspect but also the psychological one, «the most important and difficult. Liván has managed to throw 80 pitches in the bullpen; in the postseason he will work on 25 pitches, 30% of what he is used to in the Japanese Professional League.

«But this way he can pitch with a day or two of rest. He doesn’t lose stability,» said the miner’s trainer, famous for his work in arms recovery and recent winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award at the AFIDE International Convention.

He added that the left-hander does not have his usual velocity, between 94 and 96 miles per hour (mph), but that «is normal, since he has not pitched for five months. He will advance as he trains and faces hitters».

According to Cortina with the 25 pitches, the stellar reliever can throw the eighth and ninth innings if needed by Yulieski González’s troop. «We did evaluations on him and he is doing very well. He has everything to be of great help to the Artemiseños,» Cortina concluded.

For his part, right-hander Erly Casanova, who also worked with Cortina during the end of the year, also said he is ready for the playoffs.

«As I have said in other interviews, in Artemisa I have been very well received, I even reached 100 wins in the National Series. I feel very well. I would like to tell the fans to expect the best from us.

«With the entry of Moinelo the staff will be rounded and this will be a plus of victory for the hunters,» stated Casanova, who in this League acting only as the home club has been ratified as one of the best pitchers in Cuba, with the effectiveness of 1.25, a whip of 1.08, 22 strikeouts and 10 tickets.

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