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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Welcome to the Armageddon Letters.

In honor of the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis, a short introduction to The Armageddon Letters, a multimedia site about those events, in which is pondered this question: What if Castro had signed with the Giants?

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In honor of the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis, a short introduction to The Armageddon Letters, a multimedia site about those events, in which is pondered this question: What if Castro had signed with the Giants?

Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: October 23, 2012 at 08:21 PM | 10 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cuban baseball, fidel castro, giants, what if

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   1. tshipman Posted: October 23, 2012 at 09:50 PM (#4281159)
I thought people looked into this and Castro was full of crap about being a pro prospect.
   2. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 23, 2012 at 10:05 PM (#4281170)
Wow, who would have thought the Commies would lie about the athletic abilities of their leaders. Don't tell me that Kim Il Sung didn't really have 5 holes-in-one during his first round of golf.
   3. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: October 23, 2012 at 10:11 PM (#4281174)
I started writing a ballad this year in honor of that World Series linking everyone from Dutch Schulz to Charles Schultz. But I'm in the process of moving and have no idea what I did with it. I still write some stuff longhand. There are acouple of boxes of notebooks lying around here.
   4. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: October 23, 2012 at 10:35 PM (#4281178)
This guy is a legit historian and probably the leading authority on the Cuban Missile Crisis, and this video pretty much directly contradicts posts #1 and 2.
   5. tshipman Posted: October 23, 2012 at 10:51 PM (#4281190)
This guy is a legit historian and probably the leading authority on the Cuban Missile Crisis, and this video pretty much directly contradicts posts #1 and 2.


Okay, but he's not an authority on Cuban baseball.

From this book (as well as other citations):

I have written a book that I hope will correct some of the views Americans and others have of Cuban baseball. To me, the most vexing example of how lightly and condescendingly the history of Latin baseball is dealt with in the United States involves a story about Fidel Castro that I would like to set straight here once and for all. Every time I mentioned that I was writing a book about Cuban baseball, the first thing Americans said had to do with Fidel's (which is how we Cubans call him, never "Castro") alleged prowess in the sport, and the irony that, had he been signed by the Senators or the Giants, there would have been no Cuban Revolution. The whole thing is a fabrication by an American journalist whose name is now lost, and it is never told in Cuba because everyone would know it to be false. Let it be known here that Fidel Castro was never scouted by any major-league team, and is not known to have enjoyed the kind of success in baseball that could have brought a scout's attention to him. In a country where sports coverage was broad and thorough, in a city such as Havana with a half-dozen major newspapers (plus dozens of minor ones) and with organized leagues at all levels, there is no record that Fidel Castro ever played, much less starred, on any team. No one has produced even one team picture with Fidel Castro in it. I have found the box score of an intramural game played between the Law and the Business Schools at the University of Havana where a certain F. Castro pitched and lost, 5-4, in late November 1946; this is likely to be the only published box score in which the future dictator appears (El Mundo, November 28, 1946). Cubans know that Fidel Castro was no ballplayer, though he dressed himself in the uniform of a spurious, tongue-in-cheek team called Barbudos (Bearded Ones) after he came to power in 1959 and played a few exhibition games. There was no doubt then about his making any team in Cuba. Given a whole country to toy with, Fidel Castro realized the dream of most middle-aged Cuban men by pulling on a uniform and "playing" a few innings.
   6. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 23, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4281201)
This guy is a legit historian . . .

Walter Duranty was a legit newspaper reporter. New York Times. Pulitzer Prize. Full of ####.


   7. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: October 24, 2012 at 08:09 AM (#4281305)
I put Castro in the Senators' starting rotation in one of my OOTP historical universes. He only lasted a few seasons, but managed to pick up a win (in relief) in a World Series game (against Tokyo, no less!).
   8. The District Attorney Posted: October 24, 2012 at 08:43 AM (#4281324)
I have absolutely no idea, but I'll throw in that David Halberstam was immensely respected, yet as Bill James describes in one of his early '90s Baseball Books, his baseball work was chock-full of errors.

Even granted that Cuba "closed" after Castro took power, it's funny that we don't just know. Wasn't exactly all that long ago, historically. But I guess that's part of why we keep needing historians.
   9. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: October 24, 2012 at 08:58 AM (#4281332)
History doesn't repeat itself, but historians repeat each other.
   10. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: October 24, 2012 at 09:33 AM (#4281355)
Wow, who would have thought the Commies would lie about the athletic abilities of their leaders. Don't tell me that Kim Il Sung didn't really have 5 holes-in-one during his first round of golf.


I thought it was Kim Jong Il and not his father, unless they both made the same ridiculous claim.

Paul Ryan thinks lying about golf scores is for wimps.

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