These Latinos Are Using Their Athletic Talents In Professional Golf

Some of the flashiest stars of golf today are Latinos; and quite a few of the legends of the past were also Latinos. Let’s take a look at a few of them. Also, there’s one in there that’s not even a pro golfer, but you’ll know why he’s included.

1. Camilo Villegas

CREDIT: camilovillegasofficial / Instagram

This Colombian player, known sometimes as the spider for his peculiarities on the green, took the PGA by storm in the early 2010s, but has slipped a few notches in the world rankings. Experts say he’s ready to rebound anytime soon.

2. Pat Perez

CREDIT: patperezgolf / Instagram

This Mexican American from Arizona is noticed from a distance because of his contagious smile. But he’s anything but friendly on the tee box, having won five times including three on the big tour. He is currently enjoying a resurgence in his game.

3. Jhonnattan Vegas

CREDIT: jhonnattanvegas / Instagram

Yes, that’s how he spells it… There aren’t that many players from Venezuela, but this young man who played collegiate golf in Texas is a multiple winner of the PGA Tour. His aggressive style also leads sometimes to erratic golf shots, but in his case, talent always wins.

4. Robert Gamez

CREDIT: bayhilljill / Instagram

Born in Las Vegas of Mexican descent, Robert was in his prime during the 90s, having won five times on tour. He holds the record for the longest time between winds, a drought that was ended in 2005 when he won the Texas Open. A motor vehicle accident almost ended his career in 1998.

5. Carlos Franco

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Paraguay is not known for an abundance of any athlete beyond soccer, so when this golfer took the PGA by storm in the early aughts it became quite a surprise for most everyone. He has a total of 25 worldwide winds including five on the PGA Tour, where he now plays the Champions Tour.

6. Esteban Toledo

CREDIT: esteban_toledo / Instagram

Although he never won on the big tour, he once stood up to Tiger Woods himself until he imploded in the final holes of the BC Classic. He has finally come through on the champions tour, much to the pride of his fellow Baja Californians.

7. Lee Trevino

CREDIT: lee_trevino39 / Instagram

Perhaps no other golfer had the charisma of Trevino, from El Paso, Texas, who became one of the most personable golfers on the tour ever. Although he never won the Masters, he won each other major twice. Still today is known as “Super Tex”, deservedly so.

8. Angel Cabrera

CREDIT: angelcabreragolf / Instagram

Powerful off the tee, his two majors are a testament to his uncanny ability to resolve the most difficult golf courses in the world. He won the Masters and the British Open crowning a career full of important milestones for the Argentinian superstar.

9. Roberto Devicenzo

CREDIT: golfchannel.la / Instagram

His is one of the saddest stories in the history of golf, having lost the Masters by signing an erroneous scorecard in the 60s. And it is really sad for this Argentinian to be remembered for that incident instead of his greatness on the fairways. But, that’s life!

10. Andres Romero

CREDIT: golfchannel / Instagram

Another Argentinian golfer, he was named PGA Tour rookie of the year in 2008, having hoisted the trophy once in the USA along with another 18 victories worldwide. Unassuming, friendly and smiling, but one of the fiercest competitors out there.

11. Jose Coceres

CREDIT: manuaguir / Instagram

A two-time winner on the PGA Tour, this man from Argentina became somewhat of a late starter on tour having debuted at the age of 37. Add to that, an injury to his arm that hindered what could’ve been a great career. He still plays in the USA on the champions tour.

12. Emiliano Grillo

CREDIT: grillomiliano / Instagram

One of the newest imports from Argentina, this twentysomething blasted onto the golf scene with his victory in 2015 at the Las Vegas Open, setting the hopes high for an enduring career. He has a total of three wins worldwide but is concentrating his efforts on the PGA Tour in the USA.

13. Roberto Castro

CREDIT: taylormadegolf / Instagram

Another fine player from Texas, with roots in Peru and Costa Rica, Roberto was a standout collegiate golfer at Georgia Tech. At the PGA Tour level, Castro has not been in the winner’s circle although he has amassed six wins worldwide on other tours.

14. Carlos Ortiz

CREDIT: carlosortizgolf / Instagram

Young Mexican player from Guadalajara who played collegiate golf at the University of North Texas. He had an outstanding season at the Web.com tour earning him his full-time card to play at the PGA Tour where he has high hopes of someday hoisting a winner’s trophy.

15. Abraham Ancer

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Another graduate from the Web.com tour, Abraham was born in the Rio Grande Valley, Texas although he resided in Mexico most of his youth. The last few years he has been grinding it out on the major tour still without any victories, but with interesting finishes close to the top.

16. Nancy Lopez

CREDIT: golfchannel / Instagram

By far, the most outstanding woman on the ladies’ tour in years. Out of New Mexico, she was only 21 when she debuted on the tour winning nine times in her rookie season. She also came out victorious in three major championships and is a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame. After retirement, she hosts many charity events.

17. Lorena Ochoa

CREDIT: cnijdegolf / Instagram

This Mexican phenom was at the height of her career, even number one in the world for a record shattering 3 years at the top, when she decided to call it quits to start a new life as a married woman. She won 30 times on tour, including two majors. She was born in Guadalajara.

18. George Lopez

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Okay, okay… The guy is not a professional golfer, but when he tees it up annually at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am every eye is on him because of his feisty nature during that important tournament in coastal California. The comedian is totally in love with golf, and makes no effort to hide it.

19. Lizette Salas

CREDIT: meileecondron / Instagram

Proudly hailing from Azusa, California, this young lady has been striping the fairways in the LPGA since 2012 when she earned her playing credentials. So far, she has one win on tour but is poised for many, many, more. She’s been in the top 25 for a major championship five times.

20. Gerina Piller

CREDIT: gerinampiller / Instagram

Originally from New Mexico, but now living in Fort Worth, Texas, she had a decorated career as a collegiate golfer, which obviously led toward gaining a spot at the LPGA tour. Still without any wins, she has been extremely close, and expects her day to come very soon.

21. Lee Lopez

CREDIT: @leelo03 / Twitter

An extremely talented lady from California, she started playing the LPGA tour in 2015 when she led all rookies in driving accuracy off the tee. She definitely has it for striping the fairways as she finished fifth in driving accuracy in 2017. There are no doubts that she will soon be in the winner’s circle.

22. Homero Blancas

CREDIT: golfaidreviews / Instagram

A legend from way back when golf among Latinos was almost unheard of. Blancas was born in Houston and was named rookie of the year at the PGA Tour in 1965 after being a stellar player for the University of Houston. He has a total of seven wins on tour and even represented the USA at the Ryder Cup in 1973.

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These Latino Athletes Have Delivered The Most Iconic Moments In Sports History


These Latino Athletes Have Delivered The Most Iconic Moments In Sports History

Mauricio Salas/Jam Media/Getty Images

Latin American and U.S. Latino athletes have given the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking world countless moments of joy, pride, and hope. Latin American sportswomen and men usually come from disadvantaged backgrounds so their stories of pride and success inspire us even more. It would be almost impossible to enumerate all the triumphs achieved by Latin American athletes, but we are listing the Most Iconic Moments In Sports. Sí se puede!

When Diego Armando Maradona scored the infamous but glorious goal known as “La mano de Dios” (“The hand of God”)
June 22, 1986, Estadio Azteca in Mexico City, in a quarterfinals game against bitter rivals England

Diego Armando Maradona
Credit: romanzosportivo / Instagram

This has got to be the single most controversial moment in World Cup history. Argentina was facing England in the quarterfinals and Maradona jumped to hit the ball with his head. But thing is, he actually hit it with his hand and the ball penetrated the net. The English were of course appalled, but this event remains one of the most memorable in the long history of joy and drama of the Argentinian national team. We got to also remember that there was some bad blood between Argentina and England at the time, a product of the Falklands War. 

When Ana Gabriela Guevara excelled in an Olympic event that was uncharted territory for Latina athletes
2004 Olympic Games, Athens, Greece

Gabriela Guevara
Credit: efemerides_de_famosos / Instagram

Ana Gabriela Guevara, who is now a very controversial politician, gained notoriety for scoring a silver medal in the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. She competed in 400m, a test that Mexican track athletes don’t generally excel. But she proved that she is one of a kind. 

When Mexican boxing legend Julio César Chávez pulled off a miracle and knocked out Meldrick Taylor in the last few seconds of their championship unification fight
March 17, 1990, Las Vegas, Nevada

César Chávez
Credit: jcchavez115 / Instagram

In a rare encounter, the world’s two best boxers met for a unification fight. Both were unbeaten and Chávez was heralded as a national hero in his native Mexico. The fight was as tough as it gets, with both boxers sustaining enormous amounts of punishment. With 17 seconds left on the clock and behind in the scorecards Julio César connected with a massive right hand. The contest was stopped with two seconds left: a boxing miracle of the highest order.

When Fernando Valenzuela became a baseball hero and an icon of Mexican-American pride and excellence

Fernando Valenzuela
Credit: 5browncrew / Instagram

Fernando “El Toro” Valenzuela became an icon of Latino sportsmanship after an excellent 1981 season with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was one of the first Mexicans to break into the mainstream in the United States. He inspired and continues to inspire, millions of paisanos. He was an All-Star in each season of his incredible 1981-1986 run. 

When Gabriela Sabatini demonstrated that Latinas can excel in the tennis court
US Open, 1990, Womens’ Tennis champion!

Gaby Sabatini
Credit: sabatinigaby / Instagram

Tennis is a perilous sport for Latin Americans because it is mostly dominated by the United States and Europe. But Gaby Sabatini showed that Latino girls can be ace too! She won the U.S. Open in 1990, defeating the German Stefi Graf. Una dama del deporte blanco en toda la extensión de la palabra.

When Colombian dynamo Nairo Quintana reached the stars on his bike
Since 2012

Nairo Quintana
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Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas is perhaps the greatest Colombian cyclist of all time. That is a big claim considering the long and glorious history of the sport in Colombia. Quintana is known for his sustained attacks during steep hills: when most of his adversaries struggle, he has his best performance. He was won multiple stages of the Tour de France and the Giro di Italia. 

When Felipe “Tibio” Muñoz swam toward a gold medal and got a whole country celebrating after some pretty traumatizing events
1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City

El Tibio
Credit: mexico_68_el_tibio_munoz. Digital image. El Grafico

Prior to the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City, Mexicans had experienced a traumatizing event when the army attacked a group of students and civilians who were protesting at the Tlatelolco Square. The country was split emotionally and politically. But then came “El Tibio” and at least for a brief moment, the country was united behind a young man who swam his way to a gold medal. The memory of his accomplishment is still brought up today when thinking of the greatest sporting moments in Latin American history. 

When Ecuadorian athlete Jefferson Perez won an Olympic gold medal in the Atlanta Olympic Games
Atlanta Olympic Games, 1996

Jefferson Perez
Credit: jeffersonperezq / Instagram

Ecuador doesn’t have a strong Olympic team, and medals have been few and far in between. That is why Jefferson Perez is a standout in the sporting history of this proud South American nation. During the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, Perez did the unthinkable. As Rihannon Walker writes in The Undefeated: “Ecuador’s Jefferson Pérez, Russia’s Ilya Markov and Mexico’s Bernardo Segura struggled to find separation from one another as they neared the finish of the 20-kilometer walk at the 1996 Olympics. Then Pérez began to take advantage of having the youngest legs of the trio and powered himself into the lead. As a crowd of 85,000 waited to see who would be the first to appear at Olympic Stadium, Pérez made a dramatic solo entrance and finished in 1 hour, 20 minutes and 7 seconds to become the youngest gold medalist in the 20-km event at 22. His victory also secured Ecuador’s first Olympic medal.” Just wow, a moment to remember forever. 

When Teófilo Stevenson reigned supreme in amateur boxing. Viva Cuba!
1972, 1975, and 1980 Olympic Games in Munich, Montreal, and Moscow

Most Iconic Moments In Sports
Credit: saintmax55 / Instagram

In the 1970s Muhammad Ali was the greatest name in heavyweight boxing, but he was perhaps not the best. Many believe that amateur legend Teofilo Stevenson of Cuba would have beat the great Ali. But, alas, Cuban boxers were not allowed to turn professional and a fight between the two never materialized. Stevenson’s amateur career extended 20 years, from 1969 to 1986. He won a total of three gold medals, un logro extraordinario

When “Las espectaculares morenas del Caribe” Cuban female volleyball team captured the world’s imagination and won three consecutive Olympic gold medals
Barcelona 1992, Atlanta 1996 and Sydney 2000 Olympic Games

Most Iconic Moments In Sports
Credit: AAuFzt9. Digital image. MSN. 

This group of amazing Cuban ladies totally dominated volleyball for three Olympic Games, and then won the bronze in their fourth attempt. Puro Cuba! 

When Costa Rican swimmer Claudia Poll surprised everyone and became a national icon
Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games

Most Iconic Moments In Sports
Credit: AAuFGZl. Digital image. MSN

This amazing woman was born in Nicaragua but later became a Costa Rican citizen. She won a gold medal in the Atlanta Games (a big year for Latino athletes!) and is considered the greatest sports figure in the history of the Central American nation. She also won two bronze medals in the 2000 Sydney Olympics. A true force of nature.

READ: 11 Unusual Sports You Can Find In Latin America

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After 105 Years, the Cleveland Indians Will Finally Change Its Racist Name and Donald Trump is Not Happy


After 105 Years, the Cleveland Indians Will Finally Change Its Racist Name and Donald Trump is Not Happy

Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

After 105 years of having a racist moniker as their team name, the Cleveland Indians has finally decided to change their name.

The New York Times broke the news on Sunday, speaking to three anonymous sources with inside information. Per the Times, the baseball team will apparently formally announce the news as early as this week.

The Cleveland Indians have long come under criticism for having what many consider a racial slur against Native Americans as their team name.

Crystal Echo Hawk, an indigenous activist and member of Pawnee tribe once told USA Today that sports teams that brand themselves with Native American imagery “impacts not only how people view us, but also how we view ourselves. These mascots propagate offensive stereotypes, and scientific studies have shown they increase rates of depression and anxiety among our youth.”

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

In 2018, the Cleveland Indians retired the mascot they’d had for 71 years, “Chief Wahoo”. “Chief Wahoo” was a racist caricature of a Native American. The mascot had bright red skin, an exaggerated nose, and a feather pinned to the back of his head. Ironically, the mascot last appeared on the players’ uniforms on Indigenous Peoples’ Day/Columbus Day in 2018.

Native Americans have long called for the Cleveland Indians to retire their mascot and change their name.

According to the sources that The New York Times interviewed, the transition from being called the “Indians” to a new name (one that is still undecided) will be a difficult one. The Cleveland baseball team will have to phase out all merchandise, retire their current uniforms, and work with a manufacturer to create new equipment and signage. In other words, they have an expensive undertaking ahead of them. One that probably should have been done a long time ago.

The decision to finally change the team’s offensive name comes after a tumultuous year where many American institutions faced a racial reckoning.

Many spokespeople of old that were rooted in minstrelsy, like Aunt Jemima and Uncle Ben, were retired by brands in the aftermath of the Black Lives Matter protests over the summer. It appears that the Cleveland baseball team has also finally heeded its critics.

In July, the team formerly known as the Washington Redskins finally dropped their offensive name as well. The team now goes by the Washington Football Team while they decide on a new name.

But of course, not everyone is happy with the name change. Some believe that the MLB team is becoming too “politically correct”.

None other than President Trump tweeted out his displeasure at the news, calling it “not good news” and claiming that the name change was “cancel culture at work”.

Contrary to what Trump thinks, when a brand evolves to be less offensive and respect the culture of a marginalized community, it isn’t giving into “cancel culture”, but is actually…working towards a better world. We know Donnie doesn’t know much about that.

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