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Thread: WBC Cuba question

  1. #1
    Member Gainesville Red's Avatar
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    WBC Cuba question

    Guys like Contrares and El Duque came from Cuba, right?
    And basically it means they have to escape Cuba to play here, correct?

    I haven't watched much of the Cuba team play before tonight, but surely they have at least a couple guys MLB teams would be interested in.

    What's to stop these guys from just not going home if they don't want to? It seems like it would be a lot easier to just sort of get lost in the United States when it's time to go home than it is to escape on a boat (or however they escape).

    I mean, are they under strict lock and key in their hotel rooms after a game, or what?

    Send a couple pitchers the address to GAB under the table or something.

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  3. #2
    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    They have families, hard to leave them behind.
    Go Gators!

  4. #3
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    I think Cuba has a couple of pitchers the reds would be interested. LOL
    "I notice that I'm throwing hard when I hear the crowd gasping," - Chapman


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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Quote Originally Posted by KronoRed
    They have families, hard to leave them behind.

    That might lead to a really nasty, five-alarm international scandal, too.

  6. #5
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Quote Originally Posted by realreds1
    That might lead to a really nasty, five-alarm international scandal, too.
    Maybe I just don't remember, but why did it not lead to an incident when Contrares crossed over?

  7. #6
    Member MasonBuzz3's Avatar
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    not only some of the cuban pitchers, but i would like to see 2B Yulieski Gourriel in a Reds uniform. 21 year old infielder, has some serious talent

  8. #7
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    The Cuban players are watched and guarded, and they wear red track suits in public so they can't escape into a crowd at the mall, or something. It takes a lot of undercover work by agents (baseball agents) to get close to them and get them into the network that breaks them free. The book "The Duke of Havana" is a good look at how El Duque made it out.

  9. #8
    Member Gainesville Red's Avatar
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Interesting. I'll be visiting the library tommorow.

  10. #9
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Think of the Russian musician and ballet dancers and you will get the picture on how closely guarded players are. Don't know about the Cuban regime but in certain countries when highly gifted individuals go on international tours their families are placed under house arrest.

  11. #10
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Quote Originally Posted by Nugget
    Think of the Russian musician and ballet dancers and you will get the picture on how closely guarded players are. Don't know about the Cuban regime but in certain countries when highly gifted individuals go on international tours their families are placed under house arrest.
    WOW. I had no idea.

  12. #11
    Mon chou Choo vaticanplum's Avatar
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Quote Originally Posted by Gainesville Red
    Maybe I just don't remember, but why did it not lead to an incident when Contrares crossed over?
    This is halfway-informed speculation, not necessarily fact, but...Contreras had a very different relationship with Cuba than did many players who ended up defecting. He was openly supportive of the Communist government and in general I think was viewed as a rather quiet, non-threatening patriot. He actually resisted defecting for quite a long time -- scouts were all over him several years before he broke down and did it. He was viewed as the best pitcher in the world not playing in MLB and could easily have had the means to get out before he did. And he kept saying he didn't want to leave. Although he did, of course, ultimately defect, he hasn't changed in some of his beliefs. Whereas some Cubans have vehemently criticized their country since arriving in the US, Contreras has always held that he is Cuban, that he loves his country, that he always will play for them given the chance. This could have affected how they viewed him. In addition, Contreras defected WITH Miguel Valdez, the much-respected and highly successful technical director of the Cuban national team. Perhaps this had something to do with the lack of a "stir" on this defection -- either because the attention was deflected (unlikely given how well-regarded Contreras was) or because of the respect that Valdez commanded.

    Castro was very hard on Contreras, especially near the end. Didn't he make him pitch like three straight Olympic games in a row? Something like that.

    While there may not have been a public fuss made on the level that it could have, the defection was huge, HUGE in the public of Cuba, who took it horribly. And if I remember correctly, Cuba did pull out of the Central American Games shortly thereafter, and I think that was definitely a statement on the part of the Castro regime, a warning to other players not to defect.
    There is no such thing as a pitching prospect.

  13. #12
    I hate the Cubs LoganBuck's Avatar
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Several years ago I read an article on a player who tried to defect by boat. He was caught either by the US or by Cuba and was forced to go back. Once back he was sent to a govenment prison farm and his wife was imprisoned. Basically Castro made an example out of this guy.

    For purely selfish reasons I think Yulieski Gourriel looks like a superstar.
    The Sox traded Bullfrog the only player they've got for Shottenhoffen. Four-eyes Shottenhoffen a utility infielder. They've got a whole team of utility infielders.

  14. #13
    This one's for you Edd Heath's Avatar
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Quote Originally Posted by Gainesville Red
    WOW. I had no idea.
    Communist-crazied dictators can make you do funny things.
    Some people play baseball. Baseball plays Jay Bruce.

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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    I think the only thing holding these players back is familes. I dont think the guards have much to do with it. Now the guards may drop hints to them about what could happen to their families but that goes back to the familes is the only thing holding them to Cuba. The guards are not going to handcuff a man and throw him in the plane or whatever and make him go back. We would step in and not let them do that if it was the case. If a Cuban player decides to run into the stands at the end of the game and say, "Save me, Castro will hurt me since we lost" then we will protect him.

    If the Cuban is on US soil and chooses to stay then by law I believe we will protect that person as a "refugee" if im not mistaking. But Castro can do whatever to his family back in Cuba.

    As for the Gourriel...I really wish he would stay but who can blame him for not because of what Castro would do. But he is great. He would make big bucks over here. Im talking Miguel Cabrera good. And for anyone who has not watched the WBC they missed a great baseball player that we may never see play again and definatly not in the next 4 years.

  16. #15
    Haunted by walks
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    Re: WBC Cuba question

    Hmmm... I'll bet RedsZoners have a lot of red track suits. We just kind of show up outside the Circuit City or the Chick-fil-A at the right time and cause a rhubarb, maybe we can make it out the door with some pitchers.


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