The president of the Cuban Baseball Federation Higinio Velez described current contracts signed by Cuban baseball players with foreign leagues as necessary but painful.
“We are not happy because such contracts are painful. A player of our national team, of high competitive value is not well paid. But we are calm because when they play with those leagues they improve their ego and gain experience to forward to their colleagues,” Velez said.
The directive spoke with ACN at Havana’s Latinoamericano stadium where eight Cuban baseball players signed contracts with Italy’s professional league.
Velez said that in the face of the US blockade on Cuba that reaches the Major Leagues (MLB) there is no other choice than looking for alternatives.
“We would like to sign contracts with Caribbean leagues, such as Mexico, Panama, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic where they have a higher baseball level and our players could meet the rivals that they will play with in international championships like the Caribbean Series,” said Velez.
But he added that such leagues or organizations belong to the Triple A (AAA) with the MLB, which do not allow Cuban players from the island to participate, so they have to sign contracts only with leagues from Asia, Europe and other independent ones from Canada and Japan.
According to Velez the aim of these contracts is to improve technical skills. “When our athletes conclude with their contracts they can represent their respective provinces at the Cuban National Series and later they represent Cuba at international events,” he concluded. / ACN