Above photo: ‘Ted Williams, Minnie Minoso’ Boston Red So, baseball player Ted Williams and Cleveland Indians player Minnie Minoso, posed in dugout for 1959 All Star Game, Forbes Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, July 1959. (Photo by Charles ‘Teenie’ Harris/Carnegie Museum of Art/Getty Images)
[Havana] The 2019 All Star Game (ASG) will feature 15 players that were born outside of the United States. Behind the Dominican Republic, Cuba is number two and will feature three players who will be part of the July 9th festivities.
[Havana] For the third year we feature Cuban national baseball players who are play in MLB (Major League Baseball).
I was in Havana on my way to Estadio Latinoamericano when MLB, the MLB Players Association and the Cuban Federation reached a historic agreement allowing Cuban nationals to achieve a path to play in the MLB. The agreement eliminated the need for players to defect or leave under negative circumstances. Unfortunately, four months later the Donald Trump administration maintained its posture of dismantling anything viewed as positive which the Obama administration was part of, and abruptly canceled the agreement. In the meantime, many have adopted a slogan adopted by MLB last year which simply states, “Let the kids play!!!!”
Ranked #5 in the World
Baseball is still an important part of Cuban culture. With a population of approximately 11 million their impressive ranking is 5th as determined from the World Baseball Confederation. While it is great that MLB fans get a first-hand opportunity to see the players perform, one can only imagine how good the national team would be had there not been defections, which have impacted the talent pool?
25 player v 40 player?
This year’s edition has been expanded to include the 40-man roster instead of the 25-man roster. This was done since technically they are eligible to play at a moment’s notice.
To understand the difference please read here
25 player roster – known as the Active Roster – A club’s 25-man roster is its full roster of active Major League players.
40 player roster – The 40 Man roster is the group of players who are eligible to be added to the active (25 man) roster.
Currently there are 25 players who are Cuban nationals who meet the criteria. Of the thirty MLB teams, Houston is the leader with five players.