Springtime For Castro & Cuba

“It is not what happens today. It is what happens in the future.” So sayst Ozzie Guillen, Manager, Miami Marlins.

What happened yesterday however, was relevant to today and tomorrow. Representing a team which plays in the only city in America where the minority are the majority, the Venezuelan native professed a feeling which clearly reflects his native country’s feelings (just note who runs the former Rockefeller holding). As a newbie American citizen, Mr. Guillen professed his admiration for the former first baseman. Unfortunately you can’t take  Venezuela out of the Venezuelan.

For what he said, he was suspended for five games by the ownership of the Marlins.

It, according to some, should have been a lifetime ban. Murmers of ‘crucify him’, ‘crucify him’ were thought by many. ‘How dare this…..’.

Are words the same as actions? Sticks and stones may break our bones but names will never hurt us.

Baseball is part of the fabric of our lives. This sport, more than most, identifies a team with the city or region it represents. It is a thread of Americanism weaving through a century and more with a local touch.

Milwaukee identifies with its regionalism of parochial, provincial folks who grew up with the game as a very part of their lives. Earl Gillespie, Merle Harmon and Bob Uecker brought us the game from the early moments of spring until the leaves turned in the fall. On only five occasions in 60 years, did the game stretch into October. Yet there we were, hoping against hope. Only in ’57 when Eddie stepped on third for the final out at Yankee Stadium (the original structure) did we reach the point of ultimate exhilaration.

Arizona defines its baseball heritage through the foundation laid down by the minor league teams and the ASU muscle on the diamond over the years. When Greg Schulte gave us all the delight of the new century as he painted the picture of Gonzo’s hit over Jeter against Rivera and the Yankees to win in ’01 in that November to remember, we celebrated.

Our heroes never let us down.

So what does all this have to do with Ozzie G and the Miami heat he has created? Ozzie has a responsibility to the community and to the fans of that community. It is time for Ozzie to grow up. They can spank him; suspend him; force him to confess his sins and have him do penance. They should  bring back George Lopez. Now is the time when we all need a Hispanic voice to tell the rest of the world and Ozzie what he did was wrong…dead wrong. Sadly, there is no one out there who has the respect of the Hispanic community with the Anglo overlap to be able to do this.

Out of area, non-Latin’s must not get involved here. This is an issue for the community to handle their way. After all, their justice must be met if Ozzie G has a role in Marlins history going forward. We who are on the outside looking in cannot make him a footnote. That belongs to the Latin American  community in South Florida if they so choose.

Sorry Bud. Your pontificating from on high can only fuel a fire of outrageous indignation by those who must not be involved in this matter. Ozzie created the mess as he always had by running off at the mouth without thinking of who it would hurt. Now he has to atone by the rules set by his people.

That is the only way the Miami Marlins will come out of this whole.


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