Liscio: On the Fausto Carmona case

From SABR member Stephanie Liscio at It’s Pronounced “Lajaway” on January 20, 2012:

It’s been about 24 hours since the news of Fausto Carmona/Roberto Hernandez Heredia’s arrest in the Dominican Republic hit the airwaves.  Even though I’ve had some time to process this, I still am basically in a state of disbelief.  It seems as if the leadership of the Indians may be with me on this one.

What makes my emotions around this news more complex, is that I’m surprised that I’m surprised.  (I know that’s getting a bit abstract).  I’m fully aware that many Latin American players attempt to conceal their age in order to make it to “las Grandes Ligas” or the big leagues.  These young men often come from extreme poverty and look to use their physical talents as a way to provide a better life for not only themselves, but for their families as well.

For every feel good story of a player finding success and riches there are thousands that do not achieve that happy ending.  In the book that I mentioned yesterday, Stealing Lives, Venezuelan ball player Alexis Quiroz did not find a happy ending within baseball.  Another example is the fictional character (based off of real stories) Miguel “Sugar” Santos in the movie Sugar.  Santos made it to Class A, but wasn’t quite himself after he sustained an injury.  You saw how quickly a dream could end for a player, and how Santos realized that he wasn’t going to make it in the Major Leagues before he was cut from the team.

There’s a part of me that thinks, “well, these guys probably shouldn’t put all of their hopes and dreams in the hands of a game.”  However, I think that when you’re left with very few choices economically, baseball may be your only option.

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Originally published: January 27, 2012. Last Updated: January 27, 2012.