Monday, January 30, 2023

Cuba bemoans that MLB stars can’t even visit the island

HAVANA ( Associated Press) – Cuban officials regretted Monday that Cuban baseball players who play for teams in the United States Major League Baseball and who will participate in the upcoming World Classic were forced to join the team just days before and they will also be banned from traveling to the Caribbean nation, even if they win the tournament.

“It is totally discriminatory that Cuban baseball players, just because they have residency in the United States, cannot come to Cuba or train, or even celebrate if we win the Classic.” For,” Cuban baseball player Miguel Fraga told The. Associated Press, Cuban Foreign Ministry officials.

It marked the first time that Cuba, a baseball power but facing professionalism for decades, called up players to the Major Leagues.

The comments were added to a statement from the Cuban Baseball Federation (FCB) this Monday, according to which organizers of the fifth edition of the World Classic, to be played from March 8 to March 21, have officially informed that body about the sanctions for the athletes. informed. “whether or not from MLB” but living in a neighboring country, “travel to Cuba to participate in any action related to the contest.”

According to the federation’s statement, another limitation is that “none of the athletes taking advantage of the license will be able to participate in pre-competition training and preparatory sports, which the Cuban team plans to develop abroad.” Has been.” He will be able to join the team only on March 3.

The United States maintains strong economic sanctions against Cuba, pressing for changes in the political model, and relations between the two countries are strained.

As of now it is unknown what the players will decide based on these limits, but the federation said it will continue with its preparations for the Classic.

In a change in its philosophy, which for decades sought to punish athletes who left the country, Cuba decided to call in professionals. In recent years, a lot of talent has left the island, lured by million-dollar contracts from teams in the United States.

Initially, 50 players were called up, more than half a dozen MLB stars, among them third baseman Yoan Moncada and center fielder Luis Robert, both of the Chicago White Sox, standing out.

Infielder Andy Ibáñez (Detroit Tigers) also accepted the call; Outfielders Lázaro Armenteros and pitcher Luis Miguel Romero (Oakland Athletics) and pitcher Rolando Bolaños (Kansas City Royals) and outfielder Yoenis Céspedes, were called to the Major League Baseball All-Star Game twice. He hasn’t played in the majors since 2018 after being traded from the Mets.

Along with them, others who are active overseas – Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Japan – were summoned, but whose participation requires fewer permits, such as the case of outfielder Yurisbel Gracial of the Japanese team Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks.

Officials announced that the final list of 30 players will be announced this Tuesday.

Fraga regretted that the limitations imposed by the United States ultimately hurt the sport and the team’s performance.

“Any fan, any fan knows that the preparation of the whole team is not the same, the whole team working together, knowing how the game is in form, what are the things that five days before a -More emphasis should be placed on looking at the other.” event,” Fraga said.


Andrea Rodriguez is on Twitter:

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.
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