A deep-dive interview with the man behind the reporting everything you need to know about Cuban Baseball.
The untimely passing of Peter Bjarkman two years ago left a big void in the reporting of Cuban baseball, but there is someone in place to fill that void. His name is Yordano Carmona the mastermind behind Pelota Cubana, a Spanish language page dedicated to reporting what goes on in Cuban baseball worldwide.
What started as a clandestine Facebook page has grown into arguably the most respected page when it comes to informing the world on the happenings in the largest island of the Antilles baseball.
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The page has delivered plenty of breaking news when it comes to Cuban baseball. Pelota Cubana has broken and been cited for the Yuli Gurriel signing, the defections of Yoelkis Céspedes and Norge Carlos Vera to name a few. Most recently the page broke Denny Larrondo‘s positive test for the coronavirus.
Although Carmona is the frontman for the page he’s supported by a talented team of writers that include Javier González, Drian Bernal, Raul Hernández Lima, Anderson Vargas,Juan Carlos Lahera and Zoribeth Martinez.
These writers are top-notch reporters and have dominion of just about anything in the world of baseball.
The site has been credentialed by MLB, the WBSC and USA baseball and is growing into power in the baseball world.
What inspired you to start Pelota Cubana?
I was trying to find information on Cuban baseball one day in 2009 and I was unable to do so. This was due to the fact there was a lack of informational databases, especially on Cubans who migrated from the Serie Nacional to the United States. So I decided to take matters into my own hands and the rest is history.
If I was having trouble finding the information I could imagine anyone trying to do the same. The lack of information on the subject inspired me to start the page and we have been at it since.
What does Pelota Cubana focus on?
Pelota Cubana not only focuses on Cubans not only in MLB but in other leagues worldwide. This includes the NPB, Mexican League, the Winter leagues and any other leagues in the world where there might be a Cuban. We also report on Cuban-American players. People know that JD Martínez, Eric Hosmer and Gio González are of Cuban descent because of us.
What is your vision in the near future for the page?
Since it’s inception Pelota Cubana has grown monumentally. What started as a group on Facebook with a few daily posting has become a respected site that has been cited by ESPN, MLB.COM, MLB trade rumors, and other reputable sites. We have been cited by the Miami Herald and by plenty of writers that are household names.
My vision is to keep expanding and continue to run a respected and reputable site. A site that can be a cornerstone and reference site when it comes to Cuban baseball.
With the untimely death of Peter Bjarkman are you ready to take the mantle as a top expert in Cuban baseball?
Mr. Bjarkman had one of the most respected and informative sites when it comes to Cuban baseball, although I didn’t eye to eye on him on a few issues I greatly respected him and his work.
With his untimely death, I believe that Pelota Cubana has become the leading site when it comes to reporting on Cuban baseball.
It will be an honor to continue his legacy but with our twist to it.
What is your greatest accomplishment so far?
Well, being able to inform the masses has been a great accomplishment, but being able to reach 300,000 people on the island of Cuba last year is something I’m proud of. Being able to reach and inform that many people on an internet challenged island gives me great pride.