Today, we put together a team of the best Cuban-American MLB players of all-time. Let’s take a look at who makes the team.
Earlier this month I wrote a two-part series about the best Cuban MLB players of all-time, but I wasn’t satisfied. I decided to add a third installment to this and it might wake up interest in the fans of our country’s pastime. For over 60 years in south and central Florida this subculture has formed due to their migration and escape from a brutal dictatorship. Cuban-Americans are a big part of the communities in the city of Miami and Tampa.
This group of migrants has become a force in the United States and from what I’ve witnessed during the lifetime they also have become a force in the game of baseball placing plenty of star power in the big leagues. Being a member of this subculture and escaping the Castro regime in 1980, this article really woke up my interest and I did a lot of research on the subject matter before deciding to publish this piece.
More from Call to the Pen
In the following article I’m going to illustrate the contribution of this underestimated community to our national pastime. Every person selected for this team meets a certain criteria, they are of Cuban descent.
Catcher: Alex Ávila is a native of Hialeah, Florida, and the son of Tigers general manager Al Avila. The catcher has been nicknamed “The Titanium Catcher” due to his toughness behind the plate. The veteran of 11 seasons in the big leagues was a key part of 2011-2014 and was a favorite of Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer in their Cy Young seasons in Detroit.
Although he is a career .235 hitter he has managed to slug 103 longballs and driven 386 runs. The highlight of his career is the 2011 season in which he was selected to an all-star game and won a silver slugger.
On the defensive side of the ball Ávila has been very solid compiling a .995 fielding percentage and has also thrown out 30% of the runners trying to steal on him.