NYT (Baseball): Marlins Suspend Manager for 5 Games Over Comments on Castro
Ozzie Guillen, brought in to manage the Miami Marlins as part of an effort to court the city’s Latino population, was suspended for five games by the team for his recent remarks that seemed to laud Fidel Castro.
Guillen, who left his team in Philadelphia to fly back to Miami, publicly apologized Tuesday in a televised news conference, saying his remarks about Castro were “the greatest mistake of my life.”
“I’m on my knees,” Guillen, speaking in Spanish, said.
Guillen, who had developed a reputation for incendiary public comments — a homophobic slur, among them — in his tumultuous tenure as manager of the Chicago White Sox, said in an interview with Time magazine that he admired Castro’s survival skills.
“The Marlins acknowledge the seriousness of the comments attributed to Guillen,” the team said in a statement. “The pain and suffering caused by Fidel Castro cannot be minimized, especially in a community filled with victims of the dictatorship.”
For Guillen, who often seemed to teeter on the brink of being fired in Chicago, the remark seemed meant to be funny, maybe even self-deprecating. But in Miami, with its politically active and passionately committed community of Cuban emigres, many of whom fled Castro’s authoritarian rule in Cuba, Guillen’s remarks set off the kind of firestorm he had never before faced.
People, including local elected officials, were calling on him to resign. Protests were being planned. And Miami’s management was reeling. It was, then, unclear whether Guillen, even with his suspension, could survive the flap.
“I say a lot of things and I never apologize,” he said at the news conference. “But now I have to because I did the wrong thing. I’m behind the Cuban community.”…..Read More
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