ESPN recently released an interesting interview series covering the Latino experience in Major League Baseball (The Beisbol Experience). According to ESPN “In 2017, Latinos represent over one in four players in MLB and have shaped America’s pastime as much as it has shaped them. We asked prospects, starters and future Hall of Famers to share their stories and perspectives. What is it like to learn a new language, crack the game’s code of unwritten rules and deal with political turmoil in the United States and back home? Here is their béisbol experience.”
The Series covered 50 MLB players, past and present and asked them about multiple topics within the sports framework. The topics included Family, Learning English, Food, Money, Ballpark Culture, and Identity.
In an effort to make it digestible to the common reader, each section takes short answers from your favorite Latino player on an individual topic. Take the “Learning English” section where Albert Pujols of the LA Angels explained “I remember once we were in the elevator at the All-Star Game and a woman was talking to Vladimir Guerrero in English. She said, ‘Hey, you don’t speak much English,’ and Vlad said to her, ‘I speak English with my bat.”.
Another interesting answer I took from the series was from my favorite Latino player, Detroit Tigers First Baseman Miguel Cabrera. In speaking on the “Identity” section, Cabrera stated “It was very important [to me to become a U.S. resident]. You don’t become one just because you want to. Every Latino player becoming a U.S. resident is creating a new job post for another Latino player. That work visa that used to be yours will now be given to another.”
If you have time check out the interview series today. A lot of interesting information on a much needed subject.