Pinero, Virginia College World Series champions
By Adam Morissette
Junior National Team alum Daniel Pinero (Toronto, ON) is a College World Series champion.
Pinero and his University of Virginia Cavaliers defeated the defending champions Vanderbilt University Commodores, 4-2 to win the best of three series 2-1 at TD Ameritrade Park before 17,689 fans.
In doing so, the Cavs prevented the Vandy, the school that defeated them in the 2014 final from winning back-to-back titles.
The former Ontario Blue Jays infielder bunted a runner over in the seventh which led to the Cavs final run. He also singled batting in the No. 2 spot.
At Omaha, Pinero opened by going 3-for-5 with an RBI and a double in the opener in a 5-3 win over the Arkansas Razorbacks before 24,228 fans, singled in a 1-0 win over the Florida Gators before 19,544, had a pair of hits in a 10-5 loss to Florida in front of 19,015 and was 2-for-3 in a 5-4 win against Florida before 15,560, winning the right to face Vandy with its three first round draft picks.
Pinero was hitless in Game 1 as Vandy won 5-1 in front of 21,652 and in Game 2, a 3-0 win before his hit in the championship game.
During his seven-game stay in Omaha, Pinero hit .375 (9-for-24).
A key piece for the Cavaliers as a sophomore, Pinero started all but one game at shortstop for the in 2015 after starting in 68 games as a freshman last season. Hitting out of the No. 2 hole this season, he belted six home runs and drove in 29 runs to go along with nine stolen bases.
In 2011, Pinero joined the Junior National Team program and was part of the team that won a silver medal at the COPABE 18U Pan American Championship in Cartagena, Colombia. He hit .333 (7-for-21) in seven games and was named to the tournament’s all-star team. In 2012, he helped Canada win a silver medal at the IBAF 18U World Cup in Seoul, South Korea and hit .308 (4-for-13) with a double in seven games.
In 2013, the Houston Astros selected Pinero in the 20th round of the Major League Baseball Draft and earlier this month he was taken by the Detroit Tigers in the 36th round of the draft.