Friday, June 14, 2013
Chemistry problems already? Oh no!
I happen to think Puig was perfectly within his rights to fly off the handle Tuesday night. But that’s not to suggest there aren’t reasons to fret that he is a ticking time bomb in the Dodgers clubhouse.
After his past two games, Puig has refused to speak with reporters. It kind of sounds like no big deal. He hasn’t had much to say anyway and the questions would have undoubtedly been repetitive.
But it’s a bit troubling that, at age 22, with less than two weeks of service time, he thinks he can dictate the terms of his employment. I watched as a veteran team publicist—one who used to work with Fernando Valenzuela when he was in far more demand than this young player is—calmly tried to persuade Puig, through his translator, to change his mind. No dice.
Stand down, it’s just a whiny reporter.
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Mentioned this is the Chris Sale thread, but by that time the healthy eaters had taken over, and this deserves its own thread, anyway:
Phillies broadcaster Rickie Ricardo told Sports Radio 94 WIP in Philadelphia on Monday morning that he delivered 100 Cuban pastries (two boxes of 50) to Chapman this weekend and when he saw the reliever in the clubhouse Sunday morning, Chapman had eaten about 18 of them. “He couldn’t breathe!” Ricardo said. “I looked at my partner, I said, ‘He’s ripe for the taking today.’”
. . .
Ricardo said the pastry has a “flaky-crust ... with cream cheese and guava and it’s baked, and it’s absolutely delicious.” “Now, if you eat more than two of these you’re clogging up your arteries—you’re a stroke waiting to happen,” he joked in the interview, saying the pastries are the “equivalent of the Krispy Kreme donuts when they come right out of the oven, it’s that kind of a thing.”
Asked about Ricardo’s story, Reds manager Dusty Baker dismissed the broadcaster’s claim that the pastries were to blame for his closer’s meltdown.
“That has nothing to do with what he did,” Baker said, according to MLB.com. “Look at him—does he look fat? I don’t pay any attention to that.
Babe Ruth would have done this, but struck out the side.
Saturday, March 23, 2013
No ordinary minor league team, the [Havana] Sugar Kings were the Cincinnati Reds’ International League Class AAA affiliate based in Havana for six and a half seasons in prerevolutionary Cuba. Though the team’s existence was brief, the Sugar Kings drew a strong following in Cuba and became a springboard for Latin American players. [...]
Fulgencio Batista, defeated by Castro’s rebels, fled the country Jan. 1, 1959. Revolutionary fever reached its peak at the Gran Estadio that year at midnight on July 26 - the Castro- and Che Guevara-led movement was celebrated on the July 26 anniversary of the rebels’ first attack - during a game against the Rochester Red Wings. Revelry included fireworks and gunfire, and stray bullets grazed two members of the teams.
The Red Wings’ third-base coach, Frank Verdi, was struck, as was Cardenas, the Sugar Kings’ shortstop. Neither was seriously injured, but the game and the series were canceled.
“It was an itchy time,” said [Cookie] Rojas, who played for the Sugar Kings in 1959 and 1960 and is now a broadcaster for the Miami Marlins. “You never really knew what was going to happen.”
The season, though, continued, and that fall, the Sugar Kings had their greatest success when they claimed the International League crown. They then faced the American Association champion Minneapolis Millers, a team that included Carl Yastrzemski, in what was known as the Little World Series. The seven-game series, played in Cuba because of the cold in Minnesota, was attended by Castro and won by the Sugar Kings in seven games.
Posted: March 23, 2013 at 05:41 PM | 3 comment(s)
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
A .289 OBP can’t get you to first base…but it can get you home.
This week, Ordóñez took advantage of the Cuba travel policy enacted in January and finally returned to Havana, where he was given a hero’s welcome.
An AP reporter found Ordóñez hanging out in a hotel in downtown Havana, taking pictures with his fans and generally having a good time. The shortstop expressed his joy on returning to his homeland and his shock at his star power, saying “It surprised me because I’ve been gone twenty years and, really, I didn’t play much in Cuba.”
Ordóñez owes his trip to an Obama Administration policy, much criticized by Marco Rubio, allowing so-called people-to-people trips to Cuba. Though the process of going to Cuba is still extremely complicated, it is now possible for savvy travelers and homesick ballplayers.
If there is a rebuttal to the argument against Cuba travel—essentially that it helps prop up a communist dictator—it is surely the photos of Ordóñez seeing his birthplace and family again through new eyes.
Posted: March 19, 2013 at 11:40 AM | 44 comment(s)
Sunday, March 17, 2013
Cuban pitcher Yadier Pedroso, a member of the national baseball team that played in the 3rd World Classic, died in a traffic accident on the weekend, state media reported Sunday.
Pedroso was riding in an automobile that crashed into a cargo truck on Friday night at a spot known as Manga Central on the highway leading to the province of Artemisa, located 60 kilometers (37 miles) west of Havana, the official AIN news agency said.
The 26-year-old right-handed hurler earlier had played on another of the island’s national teams that came in second in a world championship.
Over the course of his short career, his play in eight National Baseball Series stood out and, according to experts, he was clearly one of the best pitchers in Cuban baseball.
...Pedroso ended the National Baseball Series with 76 wins and 45 losses, with an earned run average 3.15 per 9-inning game, not counting his work with the Artemisa team during the 2012-2013 season.
Posted: March 17, 2013 at 03:59 PM | 10 comment(s)
Monday, March 11, 2013
Monday, January 28, 2013
Havana, Cuba (CNN)—The baseball field looks like any other where people flock to play pickup games in Cuba on the weekends.
A few blocks from the blindingly turquoise ocean, players hustle to close out innings in between slugs of Cristal beer.
But this game was different from any other being played.
It’s not just that legends of the Cuban leagues arrived throughout the morning to play on this dusty field on the outskirts of Havana. No one in the small crowd that formed even looked at them.
Instead, all eyes are on the player who should not be there: Jose Ariel Contreras.
Posted: January 28, 2013 at 07:17 PM | 0 comment(s)
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
Guerrero has been one of Cuba’s best players the last few years, hitting .338/.408/.641 in 2009, .343/.414/.583 in 2010 and .310/.400/.599 in 2011. Between the three seasons, he delivered 60 homers in 886 at-bats.
He sat out the 2012 season due to a reported lack of motivation after being passed over for the national team, but still seems like a very interesting talent.
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Most of the rosters are to be released tomorrow, but Cuba just released theirs:
Catchers: Yulexis La Rosa, Frank Camilo Morejon and Eriel Sanchez.
Infielders: José Dariel Abreu, Luis Felipe Rivera, José Miguel Fernández, Andy Ibañez, Yulieski Gourriel and Barbaro Arrebarruena.
Outfielders: Frederich Cepeda, Alfredo Despaigne, Rusney Castillo, Alexei Bell, Guillermo Hernandez Heredia and Yadiel Hernandez.
Pitchers: Freddy Asiel Alvarez, Ismel Jimenez, Raciel Iglesias, Odrisamer Despaigne, Norberto Gonzalez, Darien Nuñez, Wilber Perez, Yulieski Gonzalez, Vladimir Garcia, Alexander Rodriguez, Danny Betancourt, Vichyoandri Odelín and Yander Guevara.
Manager: Victor Mesa
Head Coach: Jorge Fuentes
Posted: January 16, 2013 at 08:16 PM | 4 comment(s)
world baseball classic
Friday, December 21, 2012
Did Minoso get an AB that year?
The sports authorities in the western Cuban province of Matanzas will commemorate here the 138 years of the first official baseball game on the archipelago, with a program that includes a scientific event on that discipline.
According to the agenda released today the opening of the meeting will be on Wednesday at Palmar de Junco Stadium in this city, 100 kilometers east of Havana.
Theoretical debates among researchers and historians, book presentations, panels and a meeting with executives of tourism and tour operators will take place in that opening day.
The next day when will be recall the game and there will be a match within the 52 National Series, between Mayabeque and Matanzas, tied with two other baseball teams on top of the competition.
On December 27, 1874 was held at Palmar de Junco the first official game of ball, as it is known in the country that competitive specialty, the Cubans’ passion.
Posted: December 21, 2012 at 02:45 PM | 2 comment(s)
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