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  • #46
    Originally posted by Agente Libre
    Who is Alejandro Zuaznabar? Never heard of him.
    Well there is not a lot of references about him...

    He played at junior level with Kendry Morales & others . here is a link (in spanish)

    http://www.inder.co.cu/indernet/Prov...enil_final.htm

    Also, he played for Metropolitanos in the 43 Series (2003). I dont know how much time.



    B.

    Comment


    • #47
      2005 organized baseball

      I know could be some lost data, but i will appreciate any help to complete this info. I want to create a database or centralized web to follow all defectors (its not a good word in my opinion) over the years. Other idea could be colaborate with cubanball.com to create this kind of database. what do you think about this ?

      2005 Major League Players

      Orlando Hernandez ------------- Chicago White Sox
      Jose Ariel Contreras ---------- Chicago White Sox
      Alex Sanchez ------------------ San Francisco Giants
      Brayan Peña ------------------- Atlanta BRaves
      Yuniesky Betancourt ----------- Seattle Mariners
      Danys Baez -------------------- Tampa Bay Devil Rays
      Livan Hernandez --------------- Washington Nationals
      Michael Tejera ---------------- Texas Rangers

      2005 Minor League Players on Team Rosters

      Saidel Beltran ---------------- Charleston Riverdogs (A) ------ New York Yankees P
      Jose Angel Cordero ------------ GLC Twins (R) ----------------- Minnesota Twins P
      Arian Cruz -------------------- Chattanooga Lookouts (AA) ----- Cincinnati Reds P
      Juan Carlos Diaz -------------- Springfield Cardinals (AA) ---- St. Louis Cardinals 1B
      Yobal Dueñas ------------------ Trenton Thunder (AA) ---------- New York Yankees 2B
      Yunel Escobar ----------------- Rome Braves (A) --------------- Atlanta Braves SS
      Osvaldo Fernandez ------------- Tabasco Olmecas (AAA) --------- Mexican League P
      Rafael Galbizo ---------------- GLC Marlins (R) --------------- Florida Marlins P
      Gary Galvez ------------------- Greenville Bombers (A) -------- Boston Red Sox P
      Adrian Hernandez -------------- Vaqueros Laguna (AAA) --------- Mexican League P
      Michel Hernandez -------------- Portland Beavers (AAA) -------- San Diego Padres C
      Hansel Izquierdo -------------- Altoona Curve (AA) ------------ Pittsburgh Pirates P
      Maikel Jova ------------------- New Hampshire Fisher Cats (AA)- Toronto Blue Jays OF
      Kendry Morales ---------------- Arkansas Travelers (AA) ------- Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 1B
      Juan Carlos Muñiz ------------- Carolina Mudcats (AA) --------- Florida Marlins OF
      Vladimir Nuñez ---------------- Tucson Toros (AAA) ------------ Arizona Diamondbacks P
      Eddie Oropesa ----------------- Tabasco Olmecas (AAA) --------- Mexican League P
      Branyan Peña ------------------ Richmond Braves (AAA) --------- Atlanta Braves C
      Joel Perez -------------------- GLC Yankees (R) --------------- New York Yankees OF
      Josue Perez ------------------- AZL Rangers (R) --------------- Texas Rangers OF
      Miguel Perez ------------------ Saltillo Saraperos (AAA) ------ Mexican League P
      Nestor Perez ------------------ Visalia Oaks (A-Adv) ---------- Tampa Bay Devil Rays 2B
      William Plaza ----------------- Charleston Riverdogs (A) ------ New York Yankees C
      Ariel Prieto ------------------ Albuquerque Isotopes (AAA) ---- Florida Marlins P
      Mayque Quintero --------------- Potomac Nationals (A-Adv) ----- Washington Nationals P
      Maels Rodriguez --------------- Missoula Ospreys (R) ---------- Arizona Diamondbacks P
      Jorge Luis Toca --------------- Charlotte Knights (AAA) ------- Chicago White Sox 1B
      Raul Valdez ------------------- Iowa Cubs (AAA) --------------- Chicago Cubs P
      Rolando Viera* ---------------- Tabasco Olmecas (AAA) --------- Mexican League P

      2005 Independent League Players on Team Rosters

      Edisbel Benitez* -------------- El Paso Diablos --------------- Central League P
      Jose Cano* -------------------- El Paso Diablos --------------- Central League IF
      Carlos Castillo --------------- El Paso Diablos --------------- Central League IF
      Carlos Castillo --------------- Newark Bears ------------------ Atlantic League P
      Jorge Diaz -------------------- El Paso Diablos --------------- Central League IF
      Alexis Hernandez -------------- Yuma Scorpions ---------------- Golden Baseball League C
      Oscar Macias ------------------ El Paso Diablos --------------- Central League IF
      Agustin Marquetti* ------------ El Paso Diablos --------------- Central League P
      Rolando Viera ----------------- Elmira Pioneers --------------- CAN-AM League P
      Amaury Casañas ---------------- Elmira Pioneers --------------- CAN-AM League IF
      Yolexandry Reina -------------- Toronto Maple Leafs ----------- Intercounty Baseball League P

      2005 International League Players on Team Rosters

      Jesus Ametller ---------------- Warriors Paterno -------------- Italian League 2B
      Roberto Colina ---------------- Caffe Danesi Nettuno ---------- Italian League 1B
      William Ortega ---------------- Caffe Danesi Nettuno ---------- Italian League OF
      Amauri Sanit ------------------ El Boer ----------------------- Nicaraguan League P
      Julio Cesar Villalon ------------- Palfinger Reggio Emilia --------- Italian League P
      * Released

      B.

      Comment


      • #48
        What the Angel are planning to do with Morales is the question. I do not see him as a 1st basemen because of Kotchman and his defensive ability and range in the outfield is well below average which was not known before he defected. He is a monster at the plate though but because he does not have a positon in Anaheim in may be awhile before he is a starter at the Major League level.

        Comment


        • #49
          Originally posted by Jake83
          What the Angel are planning to do with Morales is the question. I do not see him as a 1st basemen because of Kotchman and his defensive ability and range in the outfield is well below average which was not known before he defected. He is a monster at the plate though but because he does not have a positon in Anaheim in may be awhile before he is a starter at the Major League level.

          DH. He was not good in Cuba defensively either. I think the baseball people knew this. He can play 3B/1B/LF/RF to provide some rest to the other starters. It would be shocking for me to see him not to make the Angels team out of Spring training. That is why the Angels traded Finley and moved Erstad to CF. Casey Kotchman hit only 34 HRs in 5 minor league seasons (A,AA,AAA). He also hit 103 doubles. In contrast, Super Kendry hit 24 HRs and 29 doubles in less than a full season in A, AA, Arizona Fall League.

          I hope the Angels keep both though. This year the World Series is between Chi Sox or Angels VS Mets.
          http://www.sportsline.com/mlb/players/playerpage/387403

          Comment


          • #50
            Originally posted by bppb266
            First of all ..i want to say hello to everybody..specially to those who came from cuba and keep baseball on blood :-)

            I want to apologize for my english. Its not perfect.

            So.. here.. a list of cubans who were in winter leagues this year

            NAME TEAM COUNTRY

            FRANCISLEY BUENO LEONES DEL ESCOGIDO REPUBLICA DOMINICANA
            OSBECK CASTILLO LEONES DEL ESCOGIDO REPUBLICA DOMINICANA
            BRAYAN PEÑA GIGANTES DE CIBAO REPUBLICA DOMINICANA
            RAUL VALDEZ AZUCAREROS DEL ESTE REPUBLICA DOMINICANA

            RAFAEL GALBIZO CRIOLLOS DE CAGUAS PUERTO RICO
            JOSE CORDERO CRIOLLOS DE CAGUAS PUERTO RICO
            ALAY SOLER LEONES DE PONCE PUERTO RICO

            ARIAN CRUZ LEONES DE LEON NICARAGUA
            JULIO CESAR VILLALON LEONES DE LEON NICARAGUA
            AMAURY SANIT LEONES DE LEON NICARAGUA
            ALEXIS HERNANDEZ LEONES DE LEON NICARAGUA
            MAIKEL JOVA LEONES DE LEON NICARAGUA
            YOSANDRY IBAÑEZ BOER MANAGUA NICARAGUA
            BARBARO CAÑIZARES BOER MANAGUA NICARAGUA
            MICHEL ABREU BOER MANAGUA NICARAGUA
            MICHAEL NENNINGER BOER MANAGUA NICARAGUA
            MIGUEL PEREZ TIGRES DEL CHINANDEGA NICARAGUA
            ALEJANDRO ZUAZNABAR TIGRES DEL CHINANDEGA NICARAGUA
            ALEXEI HERNANDEZ SAN FERNANDO MASAYA NICARAGUA

            ADRIAN HERNANDEZ CARDENALES DE LARA VENEZUELA
            MAYQUE QUINTERO PASTORA DE LOS LLANOS VENEZUELA
            JORGE TOCA TIBURONES DE LA GUAIRA VENEZUELA
            VLADIMIR NUÑEZ TIBURONES DE LA GUAIRA VENEZUELA
            ALEX SANCHEZ LEONES DE CARACAS VENEZUELA

            HANSEL IZQUIERDO MAYOS DE NAVAJOA MEXICO
            ARIEL PRIETO YAQUIS DE OBREGON MEXICO
            MICHAEL TEJERA YAQUIS DE OBREGON MEXICO

            That's all


            B.
            Michel Hernandez Cardinals 40 man roster
            Francisley Bueno Braves
            Barbaro Canizares Braves

            Comment


            • #51
              Mets RHP Alain Soler had 3-2 record during the regular season in the Puerto Rican Winter League. He ended with 2.37 ERA. In the post season, he had a 2-1 record and 1.45 ERA.

              Spanish link:

              http://www.primerahora.com/noticia.a...417B8B13748EE6


              Let's go Mets!

              Comment


              • #52
                Where is Jose Ibar, the Cuban pitcher who started against the Orioles in Havana?

                http://havanajournal.com/culture_comments/4340_0_3_0_C/

                Comment


                • #53
                  Can you post the story? That link didn't work for me.

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Originally posted by Agente Libre
                    Can you post the story? That link didn't work for me.

                    A Cuban beisbol story


                    Joselito of the mound


                    In the upcoming US Major League Baseball games that will include Cuba’s national team, no mention will be made of Jose Ibar (e-bar). Unlike his teammate Jose Contreras who recently signed a four year 32 million dollar deal, Jose Ibar never made it out of Cuba.

                    Touted at one time as the hardest thrower in all the Cuban leagues, Ibar was the first player ever to win 20 games in a season. He was the pitching star who helped Cuba win Olympic gold in ’92 and ’96. Inside Cuba he was one of the superstars. Everywhere he went people recognized and lionized him. He was even given a new sports car by that ultimate baseball fan Fidel. The picture of Ibar standing beside his new Mitsubishi made it to the US press.

                    In the 90’s, when MLB scouts began to court various Cuban players to defect with the promise of millions of dollars and freedom’s they could not enjoy in Cuba, Jose Ibar resisted. Like most loyal Cubanos, his first allegiance was to his family and the system that had brought him along as a player. Numerous times he passed up the chance to jump the Cuban ship for greener pastures. As he aged, though, and saw the dismal condition lived by former star Cuban baseball players, he began to have second thoughts. By then, in his early 30’s, the writing was on the wall; he had only a few more years to play at the top level. Any chance at financial security and some prosperity beyond the paltry existence of most Cubans had to be soon. Most Cuban baseball players were living for a month on less than the one-day food allowance of their American or Japanese counterparts.

                    So, ever faithful to the Fatherland, rather than defect to the Cruel Neighbor To The North and play, Jose requested to be able to go to Japan and play the few remaining years of his illustrious career. A few former Cuban players had been granted this “privilege” by the Castro regime and it had enabled them to secure some buffer against the hardships facing most Cubanos on a daily basis.

                    Unfortunately for Ibar the decision coming down from on high was “no, no es licito (permitted).” Perhaps it was his own fame that worked against him. For such an “idol” of Cuban nationalism to choose to play out his last years in a capitalist society, coming home “filthy” rich by Cuban standards: well, what would that say about the virtues of “La Revolucion?”

                    Having passed up multiple opportunities to defect while on foreign soil, one can imagine Jose’s feelings at hearing this. It must have seemed the ultimate insult. Having given the best years of his playing career to the all powerful Cuban state and Fidel, at a salary that was dwarfed by the income of chambermaids and bartenders in the tourist hotels, he was now expected to finish out his career in “Fidel’s Baseball Army” and settle for the meager life that projected into his old age. An icon perhaps, but one scrambling daily just to hold body and soul together, like almost all other Cubanos.

                    Is it any wonder that Jose chose to try and leave? Even at the cost of leaving his lovely wife, children and family, Jose realized that his last chance at any real financial security was quickly passing. His arm, once mightier than all others, capable of throwing 100 mph fastballs all afternoon, could take only a few more seasons. He simply had to leave soon, or not at all.

                    Heading out to sea from anywhere in Pinar del Rio, the most western province in Cuba, is a perilous voyage. The Gulf Stream flowing up from the south rushes through the Yucatan Straits like a river torrent, reaching speeds of 10 mph in some areas. If there is a north or easterly breeze, the rushing flow against the winds produces sharp, jagged, high-topped waves that break over a small vessel. It is a notoriously treacherous stretch of water, and full of hungry sharks. Even heading out from the north shore of the peninsula toward the US is dangerous, given the much longer distance to land and again the very rough seas.

                    No one knows the details of the trip or how Jose and his party were found out and captured at sea. Such things are not spoken of in public in the land of the bearded one. When there is such fear of reprisal that none dare speak the name Fidel, but rather stroke an imaginary beard on their chin to signify his name, anything that might embarrass “el gran jefe” is swiftly swept under the carpet and goes unreported.

                    The rumor mill has it that Jose was in possession of a gun at the time of his arrest; a big taboo on an island of dictatorship. But, no one can say for sure. When apprehended, any independent thinker in a land of demanded conformity is quickly demonized. Even if the gun story is untrue, the additional stain of the charge will surely mean a long imprisonment.

                    So, you will not be hearing about the former superstar of Cuban baseball in the upcoming games; the magnificent Joselito who could throw a ball like a bullet and do it all day, the one who led the Cuban team to such golden glory over all the world in ’92 and ’96, the one who came through in the clutch, the kind and devoted good-looking black kid from Granma Province, the one most admired and looked up to by all.

                    For, during the upcoming games in the US – where he will be – well, you don’t want to go there.

                    John R. Bomar
                    Arkadelphia, Arkansas
                    [email protected]

                    Comment


                    • #55
                      Yunel Escobar

                      Freedom to play


                      Escobar’s escape from Cuba opens new life
                      07/09/05
                      By David Dawson, Rome News-Tribune Sports Writer
                      Email this story to a friend


                      Yunel Escobar was promoted to Rome after hitting .400 in eight games at rookie league Danville. Ryan Smith / Rome News-Tribune
                      Although many minor league baseball players feel the most grueling aspect of their profession is the constant travel, it’s highly unlikely that Rome Braves shortstop Yunel Escobar will ever be heard complaining about long late-night bus trips or the living-out-of-a-suitcase lifestyle.

                      For him, any hardships he might endure during a trip to, say, Augusta or Savannah, are mild inconveniences compared to what he endured last fall — when he literally went on the road trip of a lifetime.

                      Making a daring escape from Cuba, Escobar spent three straight days stowed away on a boat last October, slowly sailing away from the life he once knew.

                      The boat eventually found the shoreline in Miami, where Escobar, 22, defected to the U.S. and took up residency for several months before entering last month’s major league draft.

                      The Atlanta Braves selected him in the second round, ending a whirlwind six-month stretch that forever altered Escobar’s life.

                      “Getting the chance to play baseball (in the states) is very special to me,” said Escobar, speaking through a translator. “It wasn’t easy for me to get here.”

                      Simply by making it safely to the states, Escobar likely has already completed the most challenging part of his journey to the major leagues — a path that’s been successfully traveled by a long list of Cuban defectors.

                      Brayan Pena, who played nine games with Atlanta this year before being sent down to Class AAA Richmond, had a key role in helping the Atlanta organization find out about Escobar, his close friend. The two players were former teammates on the Cuban national team.

                      After signing with the Braves last month, Escobar was sent to Danville of the rookie-level Appalachian League, but was there only eight games before it became apparent that he was ready for a new set of challenges.

                      Escobar hit .400 in his abbreviated stay at Danville, and was quickly promoted to Rome. Here he has dazzled fans and the Braves coaching staff with his supreme skills.

                      “He’s fun to watch,” said Rome manager Rocket Wheeler. “The guy can really make some plays.”

                      Escobar said his days with the Cuban National Team helped him prepare for professional baseball in the states.

                      “The pitchers in Cuba were older and had more savvy,” he said. “Here, guys rely more on the power game. But (playing in Cuba) was good for me.”

                      While baseball prosperity has come quickly, some other elements of Escobar’s transition will take far longer, like adjusting to everyday life in America.

                      “It’s a process, and it’s going to take time. We’ve been working with him, helping him get accustomed to living here,” said Marco Paddy, the Braves’ director of Latin American operations. Paddy has been traveling with Escobar since he signed last month and served as his interpreter for this story.

                      Although Escobar knows virtualy no English other than simple baseball lingo, the energetic infielder is one of the Braves’ most boisterous players, both on and off the field. During any given game, he can be heard above the crowd, shouting or whistling at his teammates.

                      “Two out, guys, two out,” Escobar yells in broken-English, followed by a shrieking whistle that’s loud enough to drown out a train.

                      “I’ve been doing that (whistling) since I was a little kid,” said Escobar. “It’s fun for me. It’s my way of keeping myself and my teammates focused.”

                      Escobar, who will likely take English classes during the off-season, is also lively in the clubhouse. He is constantly chattering with teammates, even those who don’t understand what he’s saying.

                      “He’s really brought a lot of life to this team,” said Wheeler. “He’s such an upbeat guy, and it’s a joy having him on this club.”

                      Escobar says his enthusiasm comes naturally, and is simply a reflection of his personality and style of play.

                      “It doesn’t matter what the circumstance, I will always maintain that fire and that energy,” he said. “That’s the way I play all the time.”

                      According to some, Escobar is already approaching “major-league-ready” status. And although that’s a lofty description, it might also be accurate for a player who’s been on national all-star teams since he was eight years old.

                      “I don’t feel any pressure about being here,” he said. “I am going to play my game, and be aggressive like I’ve always been.”

                      For Yunel Escobar, there appears to be nothing but smooth sailing ahead.



                      http://news.mywebpal.com/partners/680/public/news6...

                      You can see his picture when you click the above link.

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        El Duke and Contreras

                        http://www.nationalreview.com/commen...0510200828.asp

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          Ha ha ha ... That Escobar story is pure fiction. He was smuggled to U.S. on a speedboat and everyone in Miami knows it. (The trip takes a few hours; not 3 days.)

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            Here is an article from PB POST on Hassan Pena

                            Commentary: Boat transports young pitcher to new way of life
                            By Emily J. Minor

                            Palm Beach Post Staff Columnist

                            Saturday, January 28, 2006

                            As a boy in Cuba, Hassan Pena learned to pitch with a baseball made of socks and tape. He'd eaten red meat maybe a half-dozen times. If that.

                            And his family residence was in such disrepair that the government eventually condemned the building, sending him and his parents off to more dormitory-like living quarters.



                            Now, he's in America, playing on a community college baseball team, watching his favorite Major League players on television, enjoying the freedom of telling a good Fidel joke — not to mention the occasional triple Whopper with cheese.

                            It's hard to know which is more satisfying, really, since each of those indulgences has an exhilarating reward.

                            Pena, 20, a top prospect on Cuba's Industriales team, left there on a speedboat in August, and he won't be going back. He lives with his mother's sister in West Palm Beach. His career advisers are his cousin, Richard Valdes, and Marcos Gonzalez, a Cuban lawyer and the founding partner in the law firm where Valdes works.

                            I met Pena Thursday after practice, his gray polyester uniform still dusty from the ball field. He was shooting pool in Gonzalez's office, the evening light fading, the sky lit up beyond the windowed 6th-floor wall, like one of those old Florida postcards.

                            Pretty. But the story of young Pena is rife with danger and emotion.

                            And promise. The baseball gods willing, Sports Illustrated will get to this story soon.

                            He tried to leave Cuba twice, was unsuccessful the first time, ended up in jail and on the government's list. If you know anything about Cuba, you know you don't have a rousing career in Cuban baseball after trying to leave.

                            And it's not that Pena didn't know what he had.

                            After he'd impressed government officials with his breaking ball, he'd joined an elite group of young athletes. They stayed in nice hotels — not the luxurious ones set aside for tourists, but hotels nonetheless. He had a private shower. He ate an occasional steak.

                            But after that first attempt, his parents knew life would not be the same for Hassan Pena, their only child.

                            He says his parents knew their son would "never be a person in Cuba."

                            So he tried again, and the second time was the charm, and after 10 wretched hours at sea, he reached South Florida dry land in August.

                            And thus began his American life, the jaw-dropping trips to Wal-Mart and the lobster dinners and the countless hours of ESPN. And while this kid continues to adore this life, Gonzalez worries.

                            Did he and Valdes do the right thing?

                            In the complicated world of professional baseball, Pena could have gotten more money right off if he'd first moved to the Dominican Republic or Nicaragua. That way, he could have entered the majors as something called a free agent. Now, he'll go through the draft — which will certainly mean less money.

                            Gonzalez, who was born in Cuba and came here on the Mariel boatlift, said these decisions tortured him for many nights. But in the end, they decided it was more important for Pena to be with family and learn how to become "a good citizen."

                            In the end, they decided the kid's talent would carry him through.

                            Pena is scheduled to pitch today for Palm Beach Community College, and some big-time scouts are supposed to be there. On Thursday, he looked handsome and happy — but still very much like a boy who misses his mother.

                            Gonzalez said that since August, through it all, a day has rarely passed without Pena wondering aloud about one simple thing.

                            "He wonders what his mother is eating back in Cuba," Gonzalez said. "He mentions this almost every day."

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              Originally posted by Agente Libre
                              Ha ha ha ... That Escobar story is pure fiction. He was smuggled to U.S. on a speedboat and everyone in Miami knows it. (The trip takes a few hours; not 3 days.)

                              How about the scouting report?

                              Good for him he came that quick.

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                "Baseball America" just came out with their top 100 draft prospects and Top 25 junior college prospects today, which are compiled from surveys of MLB scouts. Hassan Pena is not on either list, which was surprising. Pena received good reports after the tournament in Jupiter in the fall, but it looks like he'll need to work his way into the higher rounds.

                                Comment

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