Baseball Been Very, Very Bad to Me

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For all you Castro-haters and baseball nerds—and pursuant to Katherine Mangu-Ward's post on incremental change in Raul's Cuba—it seems that a few more top-ranked Cuban ballplayers have defected to the United States. According to Newsday, Yadel Marty and Yasser Gomez, two members of the Cuban national baseball squad, were tossed from their local team (Industriales) for "a grave act of indiscipline," after having been caught planning to flee the island. According to ESPNdeportes.com, "The possibility of an MLB career was not the primary reason pitcher Yadel Marti and outfielder Yasser Gomez left Cuba in a raft during the holidays."

The first and most important reason, according to them, was leaving a life of abuse, humiliation and injustices. "We are tired that the authorities didn't respect us and treat us like children," said Marti said, Cuba's best pitcher in the first World Baseball Classic in 2006. "In Cuba, although we were good players, we were underestimated and disrespected. Injustices forced us to decide," added Gomez.

Marti and Gomez, who left Cuba illegally on Dec. 22, spoke with ESPNdeportes.com from New York, where they have been since Thursday. Both players contracted Puerto Rican agent Jaime Torres to represent them in their pursuit of getting MLB contracts. They plan to travel to the Dominican Republic in the next couple of days to begin the process. Contrary to what was reported earlier, Marti and Gomez never went through the Dominican Republic during their two-week odyssey that took them from Cuba to Mexico and then to the United States.

In other Cuba news, I have a few quibbles with this piece in the Los Angeles Times, co-authored by the always-interesting Peter Kornbluh, director of the Cuba Documentation Project at the indespensible lefty research institute National Security Archive, but the basic premise is correct: A new approach to Cuba policy is badly needed and the incoming administration is our best hope for changing the United State's current strategy of isolation. Oddly, while Kornbluh mentions that while a slight majority of Miami Cubans now favor lifting the embargo, he fails to note that Barack Obama has promised to keep it in place. (H/T: Jeff Schaler)

Previous Reason coverage of Cuba here.

NEXT: Conservation Theater

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  1. The embargo is stupid, we do buisness with china, who is MUCH worse than cuba. Plus it just hurts cubans, and americans. the cubans do not get the goods they need. and we lost the cigars clubs and the ability to exploit the locals, lol. but seroiusly it needs to be lifted, it is assine

  2. Ever notice that they rarely/never try to flee to freedom when playing in Baltimore?

  3. You never report on the Americans who defect to Cuba, racist imperialist dogs.

  4. Katherine’s article convinced me. No more trade with Connecticut.

  5. SP,

    I am sure they mentioned those SDS/WU folks back in the 1970s. I am too lazy to check, but I feel comfortable giving it a high confidence.

  6. But Guy! Free health care! It’s free!

  7. An article written by Moynihan which references an article written by Katherine Mangu-Ward? Cue leftwing whinefest. WORST. ARTICLE. EVER.

  8. NS,

    Like those 1000 bandaids at the ‘Baracklyn Cyclones’ games?

    What happened to our socialists anyway? Picking up welfare checks or something?

  9. “The possibility of an MLB career was not the primary reason pitcher Yadel Marti and outfielder Yasser Gomez left Cuba in a raft during the holidays.”

    M’kay.

    A new approach to Cuba policy is badly needed and the incoming administration is our best hope for changing the United State’s current strategy of isolation.

    Well duh!

    Oddly, Kornbluh mentions that while a slight majority of Miami Cubans now favor lifting the embargo, Barack Obama’s has promise to keep it in place.

    That’s one campaign promise Obama can braek that I won’t hold againt him.
    _________________________________________________________________________
    In other (off-topic) baseball news, 28 baseball writers did not think that Rickey Henderson belongs in the Hall of Fame.

    My dog knows more about baseball that 28 professional baseball writers.

  10. J sub D,

    My Leatherman tool knows more about, well, pretty much anything, than any sports writer* knows.

    *Excluding George F. Will, I am just talking about full-time sports ‘writers’.

  11. MCM,

    Isn’t that “Berry, Berry Bad to Me”? Or are you going for the way it was written and not how it was said (about basketball) on SNL?

  12. I don’t know. I’d put that “Dr Z” guy up against a leatherman or dog. He’s pretty knowledgeable. Too bad I don’t think he’s writing anymore.

    Guy – “baseball been berry berry good to me”.

  13. BP,

    Okay, but I was thinking about the SNL news skit wher ehe was talking about “glass bad, it brake, like rubber”

  14. An article written by Moynihan which references an article written by Katherine Mangu-Ward? Cue leftwing whinefest.

    I think that might be the first time I’ve seen Moynihan referred to as a left-winger. I suppose the sunglasses of partisanship are dark, dark shades…

  15. I think that might be the first time I’ve seen Moynihan referred to as a left-winger. I suppose the sunglasses of partisanship are dark, dark shades…

    Erm, I meant leftwingers would whine because they always bitch about Moynihan and Mangu-Ward, not that Moynihan and Mangu-Ward are leftwingers.

  16. YES MIKE I GET IT CUBA BAD MMMMMMKAY

    NEW TOPIC PLEASE.

  17. Guy Monday-

    Sports reporting is way better than actual real-life-shit reporting. They ask questions and expect answers about performance that day/week.

    It’s quite fascinating.

  18. “In other (off-topic) baseball news, 28 baseball writers did not think that Rickey Henderson belongs in the Hall of Fame.”

    Yeah, and two of them think Jay Bell _does_ belong. I wonder if the two are among the 28. Freakin’ morons.

  19. We are tired that the authorities didn’t respect us and treat us like children

    Yes, I am also tired of going to the bank and not receiving a complementary lollipop.

  20. Well hey, you remember the old joke about why Cuba can’t compete at the Olympics, don’t you?

    Everybody who can swim or run already has.

  21. Baseball writers also didn’t unanimously elect either Tom Seaver or Mike Schmidt to the Hall.
    What could they be thinking?

    Can you imagine the excitement when the Havana Sugar Kings get a MLB franchise and get to play the Marlins?

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