Sox Honor Cuban Stars Prior to Series Opener with Giants

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

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Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Giants at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the opener of a brief two-game interleague series. Starters: LHP John Danks (5-5, 4.17) for the Sox, RHP Matt Cain (1-4, 3.84) for San Francisco.

Sox Starting Lineup: Eaton CF, Beckham 2B, Gillaspie 3B, Abreu 1B, Dunn DH, Ramirez SS, Viciedo RF, De Aza LF, Flowers C.

White Sox Baseball: A History of Cuban Stars

Today’s panel discussion featuring Cuban-born White Sox players past and present played to an enthusiastic crowd in the Conference & Learning Center.

Moderated by ESPN’s Pedro Gomez, whose family moved to the United States from Cuba shortly before he was born, the panel included Sox icon Minnie Minoso, current players Jose Abreu, Alexei Ramirez, Dayan Viciedo and Adrian Nieto and 2005 playoff hero Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez.

The players talked about a variety of topics. Here are a few tidbits:

El Duque:

On playing in Cuba vs. the U.S.:  “The primary difference is that you ride on a bike in Cuba, you ride in a car here. You eat steak here, you don’t know what it is there.” 

On the success of Cuban ballplayers: “I’m proud of what young Cuban players are doing in the major leagues. And they’re going to keep coming and show how good they are.”

On Minoso: “I want to thank Minnie for laying the groundwork (for Cuban players). None of that has been forgotten.”

Alexei:

On playing in Chicago: “I love it here. Fans treat me in a wonderful manner. They stop me on the street and say they love the way I play. They often ask me why I don’t take a day off. That’s not who I am.”

Dayan:

On the passion of Cuban players: “That’s how we’re taught to play the game. We celebrate the game. We try to give 110 percent every time we’re on the field.”

Jose:

On the difference between U.S and Cuban baseball: “It’s very different from a tactical sense. The way you play the game, the way you train, the way you work away from the game.”

Adrian:

On Abreu: “He’s the Cuban Babe Ruth.”

A Moment in Time

As you see from the photo below, while El Duque was at the ballpark today he struck his familiar pose from the 2005 American League Division Series against the Red Sox that is memorialized on the monument outside of the ballpark. Hernandez’s performance in Game 3 of the ALDS will go down as one of the most memorable moments in franchise history. He came on in relief and retired the side with the bases loaded and no outs in the sixth inning (prompting the pose) and pitched three scoreless innings as the Sox won 5-3 to win the series.

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Jose, Alexei Maintain Standing in All-Star Voting

Abreu and Ramirez continue to hold on to second place at their respective positions in the All-Star Game fan voting. According to the latest results released yesterday, Jose is second behind the Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera at first base and Alexei is right behind shortstop leader Derek Jeter of the Yankees.

Field of Greens

Our annual Field of Greens Golf Outing (presented by Miller Lite) was held yesterday at the Harborside International Golf Center as former and current Sox players joined Sox fans for an enjoyable day. The proceeds from the tournament benefit pediatric cancer research and treatment at Lurie Children’s Hospital and the University of Chicago Comer Children’s Hospital.

Among those participating yesterday was Hall of Famer Carlton Fisk:

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Inaugural #Social Series

The White Sox and Giants have teamed up for the inaugural #SocialSeries. As part of the #SocialSeries, each team will send a correspondent to the other team’s city.

The Giants’ correspondent is Alena Docena (@alenadee20_LWOS) The contest to be the White Sox #SocialSeries correspondent will launch July 1, and fans can find details at whitesox.com/socialseries.

Quote of the Day

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Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Giants at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, WGN) in the finale of the two-game series and eight-game homestand. Starters: LHP Chris Sale (5-1, 1.97) for the Sox, RHP Tim Hudson (7-2, 1.81) for San Francisco.

Photo of the Day

Worth another look: Paul Konerko‘s daughter Amelia stole the show during the ceremonial first pitch ceremony Sunday on Father’s Day. Here’s dad and daughter in the Sox dugout.

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2 Comments

Will this panel discussion be broadcast or available online at some point? My wife (a Cuban-American Spanish teacher) is most anxious to hear it.

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