Monthly Archives: March 2016

Why do we not play in the major leagues?

By Roberto Ramírez

(July 7, 2015) – As often happens at other events, the presence of the Cuban national baseball team in the XVII Pan Am Games leads fans and colleagues who are unaware of our reality to ask why its stars do not play in U.S. Major League Baseball (MLB).

And the question holds a certain logic since everyone sees the majors as the mecca of the sport, and the very media that promote the signing of multi-million dollar contracts as the realization of the so-called American dream do not talk about the reality that makes things so incredibly different for Cuba. Continue reading

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ESPN tried to shame Cuba but instead highlighted the US’s own sports dystopias

What is wrong with this twitter? First, there’s no people in the photo. ESPN could be saying that nobody is outside because they’re all watching the game between Cuba’s national team and the Tampa Bay Rays where the tickets were free, compared to the megabucks one has to pay in the US or the Rogers Centre. In other words, this was such an interesting game that nothing else much is going on. But then the photo – like all the hyperbole that Cuba’s sports infrastructure is “crumbling” – blew up in EPSN’s face, as MATT NOVAK documents.

ESPN Tried to Shame Cuba's Slums But Instead Highlighted America's Own Sports Dystopias

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Illegal trafficking of Cuban baseball players

U.S.-based Cuban journalist Edmundo Garcia in March 2012 wrote about the problem of Cuban baseball players being caught up with unscrupulous human traffickers in the Dominican Republic, with their ultimate destination the U.S. major leagues. Garcia cited a front page story on March 10, 2012 in the Dominican newspaper Listín Diario entitled “Edgar Mercedes arrested for trafficking Cuban baseball players.” Continue reading

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Cuba–US: Baseball and the Cold War

GABRIEL MOLINA on how US Major League Baseball and the Eisenhower administration sabotaged professional baseball in Cuba for counter-revolutionary aims

Built in 1946, Estadio Latinoamericano, the home of the Havana Sugar Kings, is by far the largest ballpark in Cuba, with a capacity of 55,000. Known as the Colossus of Cerro and Gran Stadium, the entire grandstand is covered, and there are open bleachers in the outfield. It is the home of Los Industriales and the Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame | http://ballparkdigest.com/

Built in 1946, Estadio Latinoamericano, the home of the Havana Sugar Kings, is by far the largest ballpark in Cuba, with a capacity of 55,000. Known as the Colossus of Cerro and Gran Stadium, the entire grandstand is covered, and there are open bleachers in the outfield. It is the home of Los Industriales and the Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame | http://ballparkdigest.com/

Not even organized baseball escaped the many-faceted, relentless undeclared war the U.S. government has been waging against Cuba for the last almost half a century.

An alleged incident in Cerro Stadium on June 25, 1959 served as the pretext for Washington to cancel the island’s franchise for the Cuban Sugar Kings, a team in the Triple-A International League, the doorway to Major League baseball. It was not something that happened by chance or casually. Continue reading

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EULOGY TO WILMA

Wilma Rudolph

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(A TRIBUTE TO WILMA RUDOLPH)

By PETER ELIAS, 1995

 

Five long years before your birth

Roman plunder spoiled our land

For Ethiopia’s sake you ran

And proudly took the victory stand.

By then the Allies had restored

Some sanity to life on earth

You arrived in Rome to show the world

Your triumph from a Dixie birth.

Fired up by Jesse’s feat

In that adjacent Axis city

With grace and pace for all to see

Gold, not one, or two, but three.

Countless other women tried

To reach your mark and failed

Battling on with maladies

Wilma’s will to live prevailed.

In track you carved your personal path

From Tennessee to Italy

Reaching ever for the stars

The best that you could ever be

We said goodbye to you O QUEEN

In the Fall of ninety-four

We dearly miss that golden smile

And the heart that beats no more.

*Note: Wilma Rudolph overcame major health problems (childhood polio) and racism in the US south to compete in two Olympic Games and become a triple Olympic champion. She was the first American woman to win three gold medals at a single Olympics in 1960, at the Summer Games in Rome. She was considered the fastest woman in the world. Her life is a great inspiration for us, as we face today’s many challenges.

From Earth, Wind and Fire, by Peter Elias, Halifax, 1995

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