Tiburones de La Guaira

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Tiburones de La Guaira
League Venezuelan Professional Baseball League
Location La Guaira
Ballpark Estadio Universitario
Year founded 1962
League championships 1964-1965, 1965-1966, 1968-1969, 1970-1971, 1982-1983, 1984-1985, 1985-1986
Uniforms
Kit baseball cap redbill.png
Kit left arm redshoulders.png
Kit right arm redshoulders.png

Home

Kit left arm blackshoulders.png
Kit right arm blackshoulders.png

Away

The Tiburones de La Guaira (English: La Guaira Sharks) are a baseball team in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. Based in the city of La Guaira, the Tiburones have won seven national championships since their founding in 1962.

History[edit]

In 1962 the Licoreros de Pampero team, which was founded in 1955, was sold for the symbolic price of one Bolívar by his owner Alejandro Hernández to José Antonio Casanova, who was considered the greatest Venezuelan manager at the time. The new team changed its name to Tiburones de la Guaira.

Casanova, who was also the first manager of the team, did not have enough financial resources to go through an entire season. He then talked to his friend, Dr. Jesús Morales Valarino, who suggested an alliance with an important group of personalities and traders such as Manuel Malpica, Jose Antonio Diaz, Mario Gomez y Pablo Diaz. In that moment Tiburones de la Guaira was born, taking the field for first time ever in the 1962–1963 season. It was Morales' idea to take the team to the city of La Guaira, in order to take advantage of a city with no team yet numerous baseball fans.

In their first season, the Tiburones finished with a 23-19 record, missing the finals disputed between the Leones del Caracas and Industriales de Valencia. The team struggled in 1963–1964, ending third with a 23-27 record, being locked out of contention. La Guaira club would have to wait until its third season to win the first league championship, in a five game confrontation against the Leones.

La Guaira was managed by Casanova until that year, and had remarkable players such as MLB Hall of Famers Luis Aparicio and Rollie Fingers, and Ángel Bravo, José Herrera and Elio Chacón as top Venezuelan figures. Casanova's contract expired in 1965 and the board of directors decided to finish the work relationship buying all his stock. Then Pedro Padrón Panza, who was among the original founders, bought all the stock to become the single owner.

At the time, Padrón worked hard to settle an important base of players which was later known as "La Guerrilla", because –no matter the score of a game– they were a never-surrender bunch of players who gave all to the cause. Some notable names includes the likes of Ozzie Guillén, Carlos Martinez, Gustavo Polidor, Luis Salazar and Luis Mercedes Sánchez, among others.

Padrón suffered a long illness starting in the early 1990s, which affected the level of his beloved team as well. He died in 1999, aged 78, leaving the control of the franchise to his son, Pedro Padrón Briñez, also known as "Peruchito". Nevertheless, Padrón Jr. and his son died in the 1999 Vargas tragedy thet killed tens of thousands of people.

Marked by the death of three generations –past, present and future– of the team, the Tiburones tried to repeat their glorious performances of the 1970s and 1980s in the 2000–2001 season under manager and former player Luis Salazar, almost clinching a playoff spot. Since then, the Tiburones has become a competitive force again in the Venezuela league, missing the final series by taking a loss in an extra game in the 2008–2009 season against the Tigres de Aragua, and reaching the final series in 2011–2012, which they end up losing again to Aragua in five games.

Championship titles/Managers[edit]

Caribbean Series records[edit]

Year W L W/L % GB Finish Notes
1971 2 4   .333   4 2nd place Triple tie
1983 4 2   .667   1 2nd place
1985 2 4   .333   3 3rd place Tied
1986 3 3   .500   1 2nd place Tied

Team Highlights[edit]

  • 1964–1965 : Darold Knowles won the pitching Triple Crown
  • 2013–2014 : Alex Cabrera became the first batting Triple Crown winner in VPBL history

VPBL Regular Season Leaders[edit]

Hitting[edit]

Batting average

Season Player Total
1966–1967 Tony Curry .309
1973–1974     Al Bumbry  .367
1974–1975     Al Bumbry  .354
1988–1989 Carlos Martínez   .331
1991–1992   Chad Curtis  .338
2011–2012  César Suárez  .349
2013–2014   Alex Cabrera  .391

Home runs

Season Player Total
1977–1978 Clint Hurdle 18
1982–1983 Darryl Strawberry   12
1995–1996   Carlos Martínez     7
2002–2003     Rob Stratton   10
2008–2009    Max Ramírez   15
2013–2014     Alex Cabrera   21

Runs batted in

Season Player Total
1962–1963 Dave Roberts 34
1965–1966   John Bateman   38
1981–1982    Gary Rajsich   48
1991–1992    Chad Curtis   37
1995–1996  Carlos Martínez     39
2000–2001     Chris Jones   48
2013–2014    Alex Cabrera   59

Pitching[edit]

Wins

Season Player Total
1964–1965 Darold Knowles * 13
1965–1966   Marcelino López   12
1966–1967   Gene Brabender **   13
1967–1968   Eddie Watt ***   12
1972–1973   Jim Rooker   13
1974–1975   Tom House   10
1979–1980   Odell Jones   11
2002–2003   Bill Pulsipher     6

   * Tied with Lew Krausse (Caracas)
  ** Tied with Jim McGlothlin (Valencia)
 *** Tied with Diego Seguí (Caracas)

Earned run average

Season Player Total
1962–1963 Dale Willis           2.03
1964–1965 Darold Knowles  2.37
1965–1966 Marcelino López  1.57
1969–1970 Mike Hedlund  0.75
1976–1977 Steve Luebber  2.59

Strikeouts

Season Player Total
1962–1963 George Brunet 89
1964–1965   Darold Knowles 155
1966–1967   Gene Brabender 147
1974–1975   Doug Bird   82
1979–1980   Odell Jones 103
1985–1986   Odell Jones   70
1998–1999   Lou Pote   67

Major League alumni[edit]

All-time foreign players[edit]

Sources: PuraPelota.com

Retired numbers[edit]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]