Baseball manager scandal heats up Miami

I just returned from Miami where I was travelling for a sports tourism story.

I no sooner got off the plane in the cosmopolitan city when I heard news that Ozzie Guillen, the manager of the Miami Marlins, had put his foot in his mouth.

He praised Fidel Castro for staying in power for so long.

It did not sit well with Miami’s large Cuban community.

The Marlins’ brand new stadium is in Little Havana.

I was at the Marlins’ home opener Saturday night and it was still the talk of the town.

I didn’t see any protesters but there had been some earlier in the week.

Speaking to fans at the ball park – some have stayed away because of the comments – they said the older generation of Cuban immigrants are most upset.

It was supposed to be a week of celebrating the new season and the beautiful new stadium.

The home opener had about 32,000 spectators. It holds about 37,000. I’m sure they wanted a sellout for the game, which included fireworks after.

Guillen’s comment ruined that. He was suspended five games and wasn’t even there.

His team blew a 4-1 as the Houston Astros went ahead in the ninth inning after a few botched plays.

Nobody went home happy.

Guillen apologized and said it was the biggest mistake of his life.

Do you agree?

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7 thoughts on “Baseball manager scandal heats up Miami

  1. It certainly wasn’t the brightest thing to say and I’m quite sure that was the major reason there it wasn’t a sell out crowd. But I’m also quite sure the next home game will be. Let’s face it. Sport fans are a fickled bread of their own.

  2. Let me put this into perspective… A baseball manager is SUSPENDED for 5 games for voicing an OPINION that Fidel Castro has done well to stay in power for so long. This angers the ex-pat Cuban community in the Miami area who fled Cuba during Castro’s rule. They have an evident bias against Castro and Cuba already demonstrated by their actions. Cuba has been run well and is still doing well after 53 years of Castro’s rule.. better than almost any other country of it’s size in the world. Whether you agree with the communist rule or not.. it works. This for some reason becomes a reason for suspending the manager from the game.. punishing him for voicing an opinion.. This all happens in the land of “Freedom of Speech”.. the U.S.
    This is a horrendous example of abuse of power by the baseball commissioner, who is pandering to a political power base to keep a particular political group happy. The national sport of the U.S. is once again being used as a pawn in a much larger game of political one ups-man ship.
    And to put this into final perspective…this is baseball.. a game.. not national or international politics. You can bet that

  3. continued from previous… You can bet that Ozzie Guillen will be keeping his freedom to speak to himself from now on… really is too bad.

  4. @CRD…It is obvious that the initials of your moniker must stand for “Castro Regime Defender” …why else why would you come up with such fantastically absurd justifications this ‘Cruel, Repressive Dictatorship.’
    Further, if this discussion was about only about facts of the Regime, which I think it is not: Guillen was not suspended for his ignorance of socio-economic, politico-historic analysis, but rather for being a lout, a cad, an insensitive, provocative irrepressible dumb-ass buffoon, who flaps his gums before he thinks. And, if some reports are to be believed, a drunkard. This wasn’t the first time too: he was earlier reprimanded about his similar Hugo Chavez comments. Compare to Margie Schott’s (Cincinatti Red’s owner) comments and Jimmy the Greek’s comments about African-Americans. Compare also how it would play if a prominent public personality would address an audience defending Hitler’s, Stalin’s, Mao’s prisons and/or any other attocities with a sense of admiration…made worse, of course if those who have died, sufferred, survived are part of the audience.
    Yes, everyone is entitled to their opinion, and in a democracy one has a ‘freedom of speech’ (incidently, one of any number of freedoms that do not exist in Cuba) however, personalities in the public eye such as Guillen, who is paid to play baseball in South Florida…not hired to opine on matters that are outside his bailiwick (particularly, his ridiculous premise…”I love Castro”) would be wise to keep idiotic comments to themselves, particularly if such ridiculous blow-hard comments would be a direct offense to so many…who have been imprisoned, exiled, tortured, had lives uprooted, property confiscated, who have known death and heartache from this Regime.

    Back to your comments CRD…(what was that again, ‘Castro, Reality-Denial’) making a comparison to “any other country of it’s (sic) size”…if you compare to what? population? doesn’t really hold up: Austria, Belgium, Israel, Sweden. Switzerland, Greece, Portugal, just to pick a few. And compared to now free former communist states such as Czech Republic, Hungary…still doesn’t square with reality.

    Ozzie should take some longer period of study time off to get a better handle on facts and reality…

  5. YUP big mistake . . At least Harper is against Cuba being in these meeting.
    i read a blog written by a Cuban lazy, gies you good idea of the country

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