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hose
06-23-2005, 04:25 PM
This could be a real dumb question , but I always wondered why.

Why don't you ever hear about baseball players coming from Haiti? Is baseball only played on the Dominican Republic side of the island?

batmanZoSo
06-23-2005, 04:34 PM
This could be a real dumb question , but I always wondered why.

Why don't you ever hear about baseball players coming from Haiti? Is baseball only played on the Dominican Republic side of the island?

I've wondered that myself. And other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. There have been great players from Venezuela, but none (that I know of) from Argentina or Chile. Why not Haiti is the best question because it's part of the same island as another nation that produces hall of famers.

hose
06-23-2005, 05:08 PM
I've wondered that myself. And other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. There have been great players from Venezuela, but none (that I know of) from Argentina or Chile. Why not Haiti is the best question because it's part of the same island as another nation that produces hall of famers.

Just for the finacial part of MLB you would think the Haiti side of Hispaniola would generate interest.

I got to believe a few Hatians have heard of all the dough Sammy Sosa has made.....cha-ching

KW should talk Reinsy into getting a baseball academy started.

Ol' No. 2
06-23-2005, 05:10 PM
I've wondered that myself. And other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. There have been great players from Venezuela, but none (that I know of) from Argentina or Chile. Why not Haiti is the best question because it's part of the same island as another nation that produces hall of famers.They may share the same island, but the similarity ends there. Haiti makes the DR look like Beverly Hills. The people there are having enough trouble staying alive, much less playing baseball. Besides, they have a French and African heritage, not a Hispanic one. They have little in common with the rest of the region and baseball isn't part of their culture.

Fenway
06-23-2005, 05:30 PM
I have been to the DR and since 99% of cab drivers in Boston are Haitian I wondered the same thing.

Hatii being a French colony was exposed to soccer.....

The difference on that island is like Detroit and Windsor.

elrod
06-23-2005, 05:49 PM
Haiti has absolutely nothing in common with the DR except poverty and centuries of brutal repression. Haitians play soccer and actually look up to the Brazilians as the exemplars of soccer greatness more than anything else. There are a lot of people in the DR who are Haitian descent - they migrated there to work in the banana fields and the sugar factories in the early 20th century. But the two nations despise each other. Haiti invaded and occupied DR in 1822 and liberated the slaves there. In 1844 the island split up again and the DR developed economically faster than Haiti. Under Trujillo, the right wing dictator of DR in the 1930s Haitians were forcibly exiled from the country, and in many cases killed. Dominicans often refer to Haitians as "black" as an insult even though Dominicans are usually just as "black" as Haitians. Very strange.

The Hispanic Caribbean always played baseball going back to the 19th century. The US almost annexed the DR in 1868 and flirted with annexation of Cuba several times in the 19th and early 20th century (we did end up adding Puerto Rico in 1898). Thus, there has always has been a strong US cultural imprint on Cuba, PR and DR. As for Venezuela, the big reason for baseball's presence is the oil companies. US workers introduced the game there in the early 20th century. I think it would be great if we could import baseball to Jamaica and T&T because those nations already excel at a great ball-and-bat game (cricket) and would take naturally to baseball. In the soccer nations, it's a lost cause (with the exception of Mexico).

minastirith67
06-23-2005, 07:36 PM
You should do a little research on the current status of Haiti and its history before you ask an ignorant question.

In short, the heritage simply isn't there and the overwhelming poverty complicates things. Simply put, many Haitians struggle to find meal and provide for their family, something we take for granted.

batmanZoSo
06-23-2005, 08:21 PM
You should do a little research on the current status of Haiti and its history before you ask an ignorant question.

In short, the heritage simply isn't there and the overwhelming poverty complicates things. Simply put, many Haitians struggle to find meal and provide for their family, something we take for granted.

Miguel Tejada was malnourished when he came to the states and about 50 pounds lighter. Both countries are poverty-stricken, but apparently one more than the other. I hope you mean ignorant in the literal sense. :rolleyes:

Norberto7
06-23-2005, 11:38 PM
You should do a little research on the current status of Haiti and its history before you ask an ignorant question.

Why? Tell us where you would go to research how baseball fits into the social and economic status of Haiti. I see nothing wrong with posting this question on a message board. Some of the answers are insightful and give the question-asker a perspective it may have taken him hours to find out by this researching you suggest. If people are willing to share their knowledge, as it appears they are, what is the harm?

If you can do something just as well by making a five minute post as opposed to reading through irrelavent (to the poster) material for hours, is that "ignorant" or resourceful? I say the latter.

hose
06-24-2005, 02:24 AM
I have been to the DR and since 99% of cab drivers in Boston are Haitian I wondered the same thing.

Hatii being a French colony was exposed to soccer.....

The difference on that island is like Detroit and Windsor.

35 years ago most American kids never played soccer, there wasn't many if any Europeans in the NBA or the NHL let alone Russians , you could count the number of Mexican/Japanese MLB'ers on one hand, and the Dodgers were ahead of every other team scouting and establishing roots in the D.R.

I'm just wondering if any ML organization has thought of trying to expand baseball to the other side of the island. The talent and the sheer number of players the tiny D.R. produces is staggering.

owensmouth
06-24-2005, 03:23 AM
35 years ago most American kids never played soccer, there wasn't many if any Europeans in the NBA or the NHL let alone Russians , you could count the number of Mexican/Japanese MLB'ers on one hand, and the Dodgers were ahead of every other team scouting and establishing roots in the D.R.

I'm just wondering if any ML organization has thought of trying to expand baseball to the other side of the island. The talent and the sheer number of players the tiny D.R. produces is staggering.

And 35 years ago, Jamaica didn't have a bobsled team.

Within 20 years, the next great producer of off shore ballplayers may just be China.

gobears1987
06-24-2005, 08:33 AM
I've wondered that myself. And other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. There have been great players from Venezuela, but none (that I know of) from Argentina or Chile. Why not Haiti is the best question because it's part of the same island as another nation that produces hall of famers.
I have a friend from South America. She told me that the only nation in South America where baseball is big is Venezuela. That is why none come from Chile and Argentina. They all play soccer in those nations while they play baseball in Venezuela.

hose
06-24-2005, 09:23 AM
And 35 years ago, Jamaica didn't have a bobsled team.

Within 20 years, the next great producer of off shore ballplayers may just be China.


You could add Tiger Woods and the Williams sisters to that list of things that weren't 35 years ago.

It all comes down to what the youths are playing and if you look at MLB rosters the Latin ballplayer, ie. D.R. has become a force. Not to say that golf and tennis will see African/Americans dominate after Woods and the Williams sisters retire. But just their success has probably put the desire to play in a couple of kids who never would of coinsidered playing either tennis or golf.

The 1970 White Sox did not have 1 player from the Dominican Republic and only 3 out of the 36 were born in a foreign country. 1 from Puerto Rico and 2 from Venezuela.

If the oil companies did introduce baseball to some of these countries years ago then it can still happen today.

hose
06-24-2005, 09:39 AM
You should do a little research on the current status of Haiti and its history before you ask an ignorant question.

In short, the heritage simply isn't there and the overwhelming poverty complicates things. Simply put, many Haitians struggle to find meal and provide for their family, something we take for granted.

How many Americans are playing on European soccer clubs today?

The soccer "heritage" wasn't there when I was in grade school, but it seems to have taken hold since.

Madvora
06-24-2005, 09:53 AM
How many Americans are playing on European soccer clubs today?

The soccer "heritage" wasn't there when I was in grade school, but it seems to have taken hold since.

That's a great question too. I'd love to know that.

LoganSox
06-24-2005, 10:41 AM
The question of why some sports take hold some places and others is always interesting.

One theory of soccer's dominance elsewhere and not here is that it tends to be more popular in places where there's not a lot of variety of body types...a perfect soccer player is 5'10" and weighs 170lbs, and you can field a whole team of guys like that...and in Western Europe and South America that's a very standard healthy size...there's a parallel there with hockey...there's not a lot of 6' 6" guys playing soccer or hockey...nor are there beefy freaks like Bartolo Colon or Charles Barkley, let alone the many other extremes.

Basketball, baseball and football all require teams built with varieties of body types and the crazily mixed immigration of the USA made those possible...if you're a 6'4" and hugely athletic, soccer is not going to be as attractive as a game to play as the other 3.

I remember it was written that a guy like Boris Becker would never have been a tennis player if he grew up in the US, he would've been a tight end.

Baseball in latin america, and east asia, where body types are typically and consistently smaller than in the US, the game is played in a different way...but I think anyone would argue that the element that's missing, and less exciting than what we have in the MLB, is the "big guy" offense threat, or the dominating "big guy" power pitcher. And the big guys in the bigs either come from an eastern european heritage or an african heritage.

As an aside, I think it would really interesting if MLB made an effort to the "convert" the cricket playing worlds in central asia and africa.

Anyways, this is all just grist for the mill...these are very broad generalizations.

hose
06-24-2005, 11:23 AM
The question of why some sports take hold some places and others is always interesting.

One theory of soccer's dominance elsewhere and not here is that it tends to be more popular in places where there's not a lot of variety of body types...a perfect soccer player is 5'10" and weighs 170lbs, and you can field a whole team of guys like that...and in Western Europe and South America that's a very standard healthy size...there's a parallel there with hockey...there's not a lot of 6' 6" guys playing soccer or hockey...nor are there beefy freaks like Bartolo Colon or Charles Barkley, let alone the many other extremes.

Basketball, baseball and football all require teams built with varieties of body types and the crazily mixed immigration of the USA made those possible...if you're a 6'4" and hugely athletic, soccer is not going to be as attractive as a game to play as the other 3.

I remember it was written that a guy like Boris Becker would never have been a tennis player if he grew up in the US, he would've been a tight end.

Baseball in latin america, and east asia, where body types are typically and consistently smaller than in the US, the game is played in a different way...but I think anyone would argue that the element that's missing, and less exciting than what we have in the MLB, is the "big guy" offense threat, or the dominating "big guy" power pitcher. And the big guys in the bigs either come from an eastern european heritage or an african heritage.

As an aside, I think it would really interesting if MLB made an effort to the "convert" the cricket playing worlds in central asia and africa.

Anyways, this is all just grist for the mill...these are very broad generalizations.

In todays Daily Southtown an article on Iguchi's translator mentioned these #'s

....This year, of the 829 Major League players on Opening Day rosters and disabled lists, 195 (23.5 percent) were born in the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Venezuela or Cuba. Nearly 40 percent of players at the minor league level are from those five countries.

http://www.dailysouthtown.com/index/dsindex.html

Good point about cricket players.

maurice
06-24-2005, 01:06 PM
This year, of the 829 Major League players on Opening Day rosters and disabled lists, 195 (23.5 percent) were born in the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Venezuela or Cuba. Nearly 40 percent of players at the minor league level are from those five countries.

Puerto Rico is not a country.

elrod
06-24-2005, 01:18 PM
Puerto Rico is not a country.

Sure it is. It's not an independent republic but it is a country. Legally it's a territory of the United States so it is not a nation-state. But it is a country in every other meaningful sense,with an independent and unique cultural, social and linguistic heritage. I would say the same for Guam, French Guiana, Martinique and every other foreign protectorate. They are "countries" even if they are not independent and do not have a sovereign government. Until Puerto Rico becomes a state I will consider it a "country". And no, I am neither Puerto Rican nor do I have any especial sympathy for Puerto Rico. Just making a cultural point.

maurice
06-24-2005, 02:23 PM
Until Puerto Rico becomes a state I will consider it a "country".

Washington, D.C. is not a state and has its own government. Does that make it a country?

Whether an entity is a country is not a "cultural point." It's a political fact. Many Puerto Ricans like to say that Puerto Rico is a "continent," but that's not true either.

LoganSox
06-24-2005, 02:41 PM
DC doesn't have it's own Olympic Team!

When I talk to my Puerto Rican friends, they always refer to it as "my country".

maurice
06-24-2005, 02:54 PM
DC doesn't have it's own Olympic Team!

Neither does the Vatican. :wink: