Cuba Runs Out of Baseball Players: Another Five Run Away

Five players increase the bleeding of athletes before the end of the year. (Collage)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, 21 December 2022 — Five more Cuban players joined the long list of dropouts in recent weeks. The experienced Héctor Miguel Ponce, Javier Camero and Edwin Vassell are already in the United States, revealed journalist Francys Romero, while Ernest Machado and Erik Matos have settled in the Dominican Republic.

Ponce is a benchmark pitcher for the Industriales team, and between 2021 and 2022 he also participated in the Italian circuit, where he played for Cagliari and Brescia. He left a mark with a pitching average of 127.2 innings, and he struck out 138 batters.

This is the second exit of this habanero, because in 2016 he was already looking for fortune outside. However, a few months later and in the face of the disinterest of foreign teams in hiring him, he decided to return to Cuba. Director Guillermo Carmona included him in January of this year on his list of pitchers, proclaiming that his staff “has 9 pitchers who are capable of throwing a 90 mph ball” and that he has assembled what was needed to “minimize the impact of some absences,” published the official media Jit.

Camero was key in the national title of Matanzas two years ago. The commentator for the defunct Metropolitanos team, Iván Alonso, called him “an elegant batter,” because he “emerged like a star from the youth world championships,” according to Swing Completo. Specialists refer to this athlete as an “explosive” man “with punch” on the baseball diamond.

“Camero intervened in two matches of the current Elite League with Centrales. After that, he made his way to the United States. He is 32 years old, and in his last three National Series he hit more than .300 with Matanzas,” Francys Romero said.

For his part, Vassell had a place within the Cienfuegos team. Like Ponce, this baseball player had already tried his luck in the Professional League of Venezuela in 2015, but unexpectedly returned to the Island. Today he is in the United States, where he is looking for a better future.

On Tuesday, the stay in the Dominican Republic of the Under-15 baseball players, Ernest Machado and Erik Matos, was also confirmed. With these departures “there are already five members of the last World Cup” of the youth category who are looking for better opportunities for sports development abroad, according to Baseball FR!

“Most likely and with the economic situation prevailing in Cuba, half of the members of this team will end up leaving the country,” Romero stressed.

In the U-15 World Cup held in Mexico, Machado launched 3.1 innings without allowing home runs or steals. This right-hand pitcher from the province of Artemis has qualities and hopes to perfect his game in the Dominican Republic.

Meanwhile, Matos, at the age of 15, has a powerful right and has scored throws of between 88 and 90 miles per hour.

Translated by Regina Anavy


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