Reading Brayan Pena story had me thinking about life in Cuba for him and his family and how scared he must have been leaving his family at 16 years old. Also not getting to say good bye to his family and wondering if he would ever see them again that scares me as a reader thinking if I having to do that with my family. But when reading this I also see his bravery leaving Cuba and his passion for baseball in him.
With Cuba and US relations restoring full diplomatic ties on December 17,2014 that lead to the opportunity for Brayan Pena to return home for the first time in 16 years. One of Pena friends Leonor Barua from the MLBPA come up to him and told him that they were talking to the Cuban government about a goodwill trip. Then at the winter meetings for baseball Leonor told Pena that it was happening and and that they just need a yes from him and he could go home. Pena says “Listen, I am not a politician. I’m just a baseball player. But I do believe in my heart that this trip was the start of something special. I know there’s a lot of issues to work out between the Americ...
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...t these players go through but what the families go through as well.
When reading this article many questions started running through me head. The first being how did you come to the decision to take those green gloves and leave Cuba not knowing when or if you would be seeing your family again? Also what other facts played in your decision making process to leave Cuba? In addition, you mention that eventually you got your parents to the US. I was wondering did they have to go through a process like yours to flee Cuba? My last question is what did it mean to you to become an American citizen? I just wanted to let you know that you opened my eyes and the eyes of many others not just about Cuban baseball players and their struggles to get to the majors and to the US but the struggle Cuban citizens face on a daily basis. Thank you for sharing your story.
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