Rey Vargas vs Leonardo Baez Preview Nov. 6th, 2021
Former WBC Super Bantamweight Champion Rey Vargas of Mexico returns to the ring for the first time in over two years when he takes on fellow countryman Leonardo Baez this Saturday, November 6th. The 10-round bout from Las Vegas is on the undercard of the Canelo Alvarez vs Caleb Plant tilt and can be seen on Showtime PPV in North America and BT Sport Box Office in the UK. Vargas last fought in July, 2019 when he retained his title with a unanimous decision over Tomoki Kameda. Baez stopped Jorge Pitta in the sixth round in August in his most recent outing.
Vargas vs Baez Betting Odds
- Leonardo Baez +800
- Rey Vargas -1600
The 30-year-old undefeated Vargas of Mexico City will climb into the ring with a perfect record of 34-0 with 22 Kos. He gave up his world title after suffering a broken leg and successfully defending it five times. He won the vacant belt in February, 2017 via majority decision over Gavin McDonnell and defended it against Ronny Rios, Oscar Negrete, Azat Hovhannisyan, Franklin Manzanilla and Kameda. He also has wins over former world title challengers Juanito Rubillar and Cecilio Santos.
Vargas stands just over 5-feet-7-inches tall and has a reach of 70.5 inches. He’s fought 200 rounds since turning pro in 2010 and has pretty good power with a current knockout ratio of 64.7 per cent. However, he’s gone the distance in six straight fights with his last stoppage coming in the fifth round over Alexander Munoz in September, 2016.
The former champ is a solid pro with a good chin and skills but hasn’t been particularly impressive in the past few bouts. He enjoyed a fine amateur career and has also won the IBF Youth, WBC Youth Intercontinental, and WBC Youth Silver Super Bantamweight Titles since turning pro as well as the WBC International Silver Super Bantamweight Crown.
The 26-year-old Baez climbs through the ring ropes at 21-4 with 12 Kos. He turned pro in 2013 as a 17-year-old and has boxed 115 rounds since. Along the way he’s captured the NABA Super Bantamweight Title with a 10-round unanimous decision over Alberto Melian in 2019. His losses came against Julio Cesar Martinez by second round KO in 2016 and a 10-round unanimous decision to Alfredo Vargas in 2018.
Baez then stepped up in class in February, 2020 when he beat Moises Flores by an eight-round unanimous decision. This led to a fight against Jason Moloney but he was stopped after seven rounds. Baez took on Carlos Caraballo in March and was stopped in four rounds to suffer his second straight defeat. Since then he’s fought three more times this year to keep busy but his opponents had a combined record of 24-80-8 and he stopped them all.
Baez measures 5-feet-9-inches tall with a 68.5-inch reach so gives up 1.5-inches in height and two inches in reach to Vargas. His power is average with just a 46.2 per cent knockout ratio but as mentioned he’s stopped his last three opponents. He doesn’t own the world’s greatest chin either as he’s been stopped in three of his four defeats.
Vargas can be an exciting boxer when he lets his hands go and he also has a pretty dependable chin. However, it’s unclear how his injury and 28-month layoff will affect him. Baez has fought four times already this year so Vargas better be well prepared when the bell rings. As long as Vargas shows no ill effects from the long layoff though and has no ring rust he should be able to mark his comeback with a victory.
Vargas is a class above Baez but will need to deal with ring rust.
Play: Vargas -1600 @ BetOnline.ag
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