Entertainment

More Than 30 Minor League Baseball Teams Changed Their Names To Honor Latino Fans For A Limited-Time Series

Between Major League Baseball and Minor League Baseball, the count of Latino players is at a record high, a whopping 29.8 percent of players. So it’s no surprise that Latino fans have come out in droves to support their favorite teams.

In honor of their Latino fans, Minor League Baseball teams are playing a “Fun Cup” this season called “Copa de la Diversión” which comes with new Latino names and mascots, and the coolest sports gear ever.

Thirty-three teams are taking part in the 160-game series and their Latino team names are pretty awesome.

Minor League Baseball officials launched “Copa de la Diversión” to “embrace the culture and values that resonate most with participating teams’ local U.S. Hispanic/Latino communities,” MILB stated on its website.

The limited time series begins on April 8, in Round Rock, Texas, and runs through September 2 in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

Here’s some amazing highlights from this cool transformation.

Los Cucuys De San Bernardino

Say goodby to Inland Empire 66ers of San Bernardino. Los Cucuys are here.

Azalea Sanchez, Outreach Coordinator for the 66ers, talked about why they chose the name they did.

“El Cucuy is the Spanish equivalent of The Boogieman. It is something that resonates with all of us in the Latino community,” Azalea said on their website. “The Sixers are giving us a place to come together, and partake in something we can relate back to our roots.”

Los Toros de Durham

The Durham Bulls didn’t do a huge overhaul but the logo is still pretty great.

“This year the Bulls, in association with MiLB, developed a new logo and mark for the initiative,” team leader wrote on their blog. “The new logo is a bolder, more intense take than that traditionally associated with the Bulls, as it’s a reimagined, front-facing Snorting Bull.”

San Antonio Flying Chanclas

Look out for the flying chanclas, aka a Latinos greatest fear.

“The club honors the matriarch of the Latino family, the Abuelita, and her symbol of strength, discipline and love with its on-field persona for this special series of events,” the San Antonio Missions said on their site. “The chancla has long been symbolic of the Abuelita as she maintains the structure and order of la familia.”

Mariachis de Nuevo México

The Albuquerque Isotopes discuss why they chose Mariachis as their mascot:

“Mariachis, like baseball, provide the colorful soundtrack to people’s lives. Mariachi bands are an essential source of entertainment in Mexico and the Southwest region of the United States. Mariachi bands can be found at celebrations such as baptisms, birthdays, weddings or celebrating a loved one’s life at a funeral. The inclusion of the sugar skull in the Mariachis logo pays homage to the importance of Dia de los Muertos, a colorful celebration to honor death and those who have passed.”

Corpus Christi Raspas

“This celebration is a terrific way to honor the Hispanic culture in the Coastal Bend and our team’s diverse fanbase,” Corpus Christi Hooks vice president of sales and marketing Andy Steavens said. “The tradition of raspas is one of the most fun and unique aspects of South Texas. We’re truly going to transform our team’s look and in-stadium experience during these games. It’ll be a weekend to remember.”

They better sell raspados at the game.

Monarcas de Eugene

From an emerald to a butterfly. The Eugene Emeralds explain the symbolism behind their new name.

“The Monarch butterfly performs one of the most spectacular journeys and has become a subtle and beautiful symbol for the migrant community.”

Click here to view the entire roster of participating teams and to purchase the limited edition sportswear.


READ: 10 of the Swaggiest Latino Moments In Recent MLB History

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Showtime’s ‘Bad Hombres’ Is A Documentary Highlighting The World’s Only Binational Baseball Team

Entertainment

Showtime’s ‘Bad Hombres’ Is A Documentary Highlighting The World’s Only Binational Baseball Team

tecolotes_2_laredos / Instagram

Sports have a way of bringing people together. The experience of rooting for your team is a unifying feeling that transcends borders and culture. Showtime is exploring the importance of sports through the lens of the Tecolotes de los Dos Laredos.

“Bad Hombres” is a documentary highlighting immigration under President Trump through baseball.

Tecolotes de los Dos Laredos are the only binational professional baseball team in the world. The team splits their home games between stadiums in Laredo, Texas and Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. Director Andrew Glazer wanted to highlight the immigration issue through a sports lens to offer a different layer to the narrative.

“Most of the people trying to come into the U.S. are families and children trying to escape horrible violence in Central America,” Glazer told CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. “That story has been told, so what I wanted to do was show people in a way that I thought would be relatable to what life is like on the border. What life is like on those two sides and how interconnected they are. The thing that struck me to be honest is that initially in Laredo, Texas was how pervasive Spanish is spoken.”

The documentary shows the struggles of the baseball team trying to make sense of the volatile U.S.-Mexico border relations.

The Tecolotes de los Dos Laredos split time playing their home games between two stadiums in the U.S. and Mexico. The Trump administration’s constant battle with Mexico and threats to close the border put the team’s season in jeopardy. A first look teaser shows team managers trying to coordinate the release of game tickets in time with the ever-changing immigration announcements from the Trump administration.

“Bad Hombres” speaks politics without directly addressing politics.

“Even though my film has an overarching political message, the players are not covertly or overtly political in any way,” Glazer told CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. “They are baseball players and they are living their lives and a lot of them are trying to make it to the majors and some of them were in the majors and are now finishing their careers. There wasn’t a whole lot of political discussions.”

Glazer made sure to highlight the depths and complexities of the team members dealing with the political climate without politics.

“Inherently, what made the team fascinating is you had players from the U.S. who were Anglo-American players and Mexican American players who had a different perspective,” Glazer told DJ Sixsmith. “Then you had Mexican players and some Dominican players and Cuban and people from everywhere else. There were different languages and different perspectives. Seeing how that developed over time was pretty fascinating.”

“Bad Hombres” is streaming on Showtime.

READ: Veronica Alvarez Is The Coach For The Oakland A’s And Her Presence Is Giving Girls A Chance To Pursue Baseball

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What The Lakers’ Championship Win On Father-Daughter Day Means For Vanessa Bryant And Fans Of Kobe

Entertainment

What The Lakers’ Championship Win On Father-Daughter Day Means For Vanessa Bryant And Fans Of Kobe

Harry How / Getty

The Lakers took home a massive win this past Sunday and scored a victory that spurred heartfelt reflection from longtime fans and family of the Los Angeles- based team After a year of devastating heartache and uncertainty, the feat was a reminder of the absence of a great presence that had long dominated basketball courts: Kobe Bryant.

In a post shared to her Instagram over the weekend, Vanessa Bryant congratulated the Lakers’ victory while paying tribute to her late husband and daughter.

Bryant congratulated the Lakers for their win in a heartfelt Instagram post that featured an image of Kobe alongside the Lakers General Manager Rob Pelinka. “Congratulations Uncle P!” Bryant wrote. “Congratulations @lakers Kobe was right, RP! ‘Stay the course-block out the noise. Wish Kobe and Gigi were here to see this.”

Fans were quick to point out that the team’s win coincided with Father-Daughter Day.

“Kobe and GG were taken so.suddenly and so cruelly because they were needed for a fight…they are not gone forever they are with you now. They await your reunion…but do not want you to be sad ….they miss you but will be happy if their departure means a greater change for humanity,” one user commented. ” God bless you Vanessa. Although I havent seen your skin with my eyes…I can feel your pain with my mind. Please Father comfort this beautiful woman and her beautiful children. Shine your light of love wrap her in your warmth. Your husband loves and adores you. And he’s proud of how you are so strong.”

“Job Finished. For you, Kobe,” another user wrote about the win. “What a season it’s been. No. 17 carries a different meaning because of the loss of you and Gigi. You mean so damn much to us. You gave us 20 years of your blood, sweat, and tears. You brought not one, but FIVE championships to this franchise. You’re the reason we’re proud to be Lakers fans. Not only did you win at all costs, but you embodied the man we all strive for & hope to be one day. I hope we made you proud this season. This one’s for you, Bean… for all the memories you’ve given us throughout your lifetime. As always, we love & miss you, Mamba.”

Bryant also paid tribute to her husband-daughter duo on Instagram with an image of Kobe holding Gianna in his arms after the Lakers won the 2009 NBA Championship.

Since their passing, fans have often pointed out that Kobe and Gianna shared a special bond and love for basketball. Later in his career, Kobe was open about his love for his daughters and desire to see Giana take on his legacy as a basketball player. At the time of his death, Bryant was a coach for Gianna’s team at the Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks, California.

During a memorial for her husband and daughter, Bryant eulogized their bond noting how inseparable they were.

In Bryant’s eulogy of her husband and daughter, she reminded the world of their inseparable bond. “God knew they couldn’t be on this earth without each other,” Bryant remarked at the time. “He had to bring them home to heaven together.”

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