The 2017 Major League Baseball season began on April 2 with a record number of players born outside of the United States. According to data released by the league, there are 259 players on Opening Day rosters that were born outside of the country’s 50 states. That constitutes 29.8 percent of the 868 players in the league. The previous record was 29.2 percent in 2005.
Where are all these players from? Well, altogether there are 19 nations and territories represented. That’s also a record, beating the 18 represented in 1998 and 2016.
The top 5 spots for contributing countries and territories go to:
The Dominican Republic leads with 93 players.
Venezuela comes in second with 77 players.
Cuba is in third place with 23 players.
Puerto Rico takes fourth place with 16 players.
Mexico rounds out the top five with nine players.
Let’s hear it for all the Latinos in the MLB! ?
2017 Opening Day rosters feature a record 259 players born outside the U.S. (29.8%), spanning a record 19 countries & territories. pic.twitter.com/DCJ7D6YDpA
If a prize was being given out to the team with the most foreign-born players, it would go to the Texas Rangers who boast 14 players from six different countries and territories outside of the U.S. on their roster.
All this data leads one to believe that although baseball is as American as apple pie, its future is international.
To say, American gymnast, Simone Biles can’t practice her athletic art form under pressure is to completely misunderstand her strength. The 22-year-old from Colombus, Ohio, has already accomplished what many can’t even fathom. This week the Olympic gold medalist made history on the competitive mat just a couple of days after she confronted the USA Gymnastics for failing to protect her, and more than 150 women, from a sexual predator.
On August 11, Simone Biles landed perfectly after doing a triple-double at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships in Kansas City.
Let us break down what that actually means because it truly is a thing of beauty. Biles successful jumped into the air and completed two flips and three full twists and stuck the landing. She tried to do this exact move on Friday but failed on the landing. This time, however, Biles landed it amazingly. She’s the first woman to have ever completed this move.
This move is no easy fete for the 4’8 gymnast. As someone on social media noted, Biles, at the peak of her jump, is close to 10 feet off the mat, which is two feet higher than the high jump world record. Insanity!!
On Friday, she also made history by pulling off a double-double dismount off the balance beam.
That means she did two twists and two somersaults like its no one’s business. All of these historic firsts garnered Biles a record-tying sixth all-around title at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships. So who could possibly have the same title as Biles? No one in the past several decades, that’s for sure. In the 1940s and 1950s, American gymnast Clara Schroth Lomady also received the same honor of sixth all-around.
After her historical landing, Biles was quite pleased with her performance.
“That feeling when you make history…. twice,” she said on Instagram. And this is all build-up to the main event. Biles, of course, is headed to Tokyo next year for the 2020 Olympics, where’s she’s naturally going to add on to her gold medals, but no pressure. (!!!)
Her incredible routine is quite impressive when you consider that the star athlete is competing for organizers who were enablers in her own sexual abuse.
Last year, a Michigan judge sentenced Dr. Larry Nassar, a physical therapist, 40 to 175 years in prison for sexually abusing more than a hundred gymnasts some were as young as six years old. The abuse lasted for decades, and Biles was one of his victims.
On August 7, Biles told reporters that it was the U.S. Gymnastics Championships and other institutions that assisted Nassar in his abuse by protecting him.
“You had one job. You literally had one job, and you couldn’t protect us,” Biles said in her addressed statement to USA Gymnastics, according to CNN. ‘It’s hard coming here for an organization, having had them fail us so many times. We had one goal. We have done everything that they asked us for, even when we didn’t want to, and they couldn’t do one damn job.”
Despite Biles’ horrific abuse she endured, her moves on the mat show her incredible strength and dedication to the sport.
The Texan native said she wasn’t sure if she’d succeed in those now-groundbreaking landings. She said, however, that she was striving for ultimate perfection, even if that meant failing the first time. Sounds like she’s a firm believer of the motto, “if at first, you don’t succeed, pick yourself up and try again.”
“I feel like I compete for perfection,” she told the Olympic Channel days before her competition, “so whenever I don’t do that, it really irritates me.”
Biles also told the network that she doesn’t even think about her titles and records until someone brings it up to her in conversation. Talk about humble. If Biles doesn’t do the bragging, her friends and fans will do it for her.
Several fans, including celebs, touted her magical moves on Twitter.
As for the future of gymnastics in the U.S., and their beloved athletes, Li Li Leung, the president, and chief executive of USA Gymnastics, told CNN, that understand they are to blame for their part in their abuse and are doing everything they can to change the culture of silence.
“One of our goals is for our athletes to feel comfortable in speaking up and sharing their opinions, and we are listening to what they have to say,” Leung said. “We will continue to work hard to demonstrate to Simone and all of our athletes, members, community, and fans that we are working to foster a safe, positive and encouraging environment where athlete voices are heard.”
The Tour de France is the biking world’s biggest event. It’s basically cycling’s Copa Mundial, it’s huge. So the fact that a Colombian is totally owning this championship race is a major deal and Latinos around the world, but especially Colombians, are celebrating extra fuerte because this year a Colombian is set to win cycling’s biggest race.
Egan Bernal is making history as the first Latino to win the Tour de France and we stan.
Egan Bernal, a 22-year-old from Colombia, is set to be crowned the winner of this year’s Tour de France. Not only will be the first Latino and first Colombian to win the race but he’ll also be the youngest winner since 1909 – yes, 110 years ago.
This is amazing.
Obviously, all of Colombia is supporting his victory over hundreds of other riders. Bernal’s victory has seemed to come pretty easy to him. He’s sailed through the competition leading most of the race segments. And since the Tour de France winner is selected based upon their overall times per race segment, Bernal is all but guaranteed to win.
“We still have to make it to Paris,” Bernal told reporters covering the Tour. “I can’t understand what’s happening. I will need a few days — it’s incredible. It’ll take a few days to realize what I have achieved,” he continued. “To be honest, I was feeling good today. I kept thinking 5km, 4km, 3km. One less, one less to go, each time.“
If there is any surprise at Bernal’s win, it is that it has taken so long for a Colombian to top the podium and he could now dominate for years to come.
But this year has scene the rise of many Colombians. This year alone, three of them – Rigoberto Uran, Nairo Quintana, and Bernal – finished within the top 10.
And yea, it’s true, Bernal isn’t only the first Colombian to win he race he’s also the first Latino.
Mr Bernal’s journey from a humble upbringing has become a symbol in Colombia, a country that has produced many famed cyclists.
He’s shattering records – he’ll also be the youngest winner, at 22, since 1909!
Yup, not in 110 years has someone as young as Bernal won the Tour de France. And not only that, Bernal is the third youngest winner in the race’s 116 year history.
Like many young Latinos, Bernal almost entered the world of futbol.
But apparently, Bernal wasn’t a fan of the sport. He dropped it shortly after starting it and took up cycling instead.
Colombia is a well-known cycling country with many champions competing in tournaments around the world. However, none has ever risen to the level of success that Bernal will have achieved after winning the Tour de France.
For both young and old, emotions were running high in Bernal’s hometown of Zipaquira.
In his hometown of Zipaquira, hundreds came to the “Plaza of Hope” to watch the final stage of the Tour in Paris, beamed across a giant screen. A graffiti mural of the champion was unveiled in the town over a week ago.
Bernal’s victory has resonated especially with Colombians from modest backgrounds, many of whom are from the same deprived, largely indigenous areas of Colombia’s Andes mountains.
Basically all the Colombians in France, and probably from Colombia too, came out to celebrate on the streets of Paris.
One Twitter user pointed out that they didn’t even think there were any Colombians left in Colombia because they all seemed to have arrived in Paris to celebrate the exact moment that Bernal crosses that finish line.
Bernal also seemed to be getting in on the celebrations.
Can’t say we blame him. Aside from the adrenaline and pride that comes from his accomplishment, it’s also been extremely hot in France. As the Tour de France has been taking place, record temperatures have been taking place all over the country – including in Paris where the city reached its all time high temperature on Friday of 108º F.
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