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An American manager in Venezuela

Dec 30, 2009, 9:33 AM EDT

Neat story in the New York Times yesterday about former Braves farmhand and minor league manager Buddy Bailey who has managed the Tigres de Aragua in the Venezuelan league since 2002.  Is it weird to be an American manager in a country whose government is so hostile to Americans? Nah, he just channels Norman Dale:

“At first it was like, ‘What in the world are you doing?’ ” said Mr.
Bailey, referring to the reaction of family and friends when he moved
to Venezuela in 2002. “But baseball is baseball,” he explained.
“Everywhere I go, the pitcher’s mound is at 60 feet 6 inches, and the
bases are 90 feet, so it’s the same everywhere.”

If you’re looking for a nice companion piece to this one on this cold, slow morning, check out this one from the other day about baseball (or softball) as tool-of-diplomacy in Nicaragua.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, if I can change, and you can change, everybody can change. And I just want to say one thing to my kid, who should be home sleeping: Merry Christmas, kid, I love you.

  1. Old Gator - Dec 30, 2009 at 12:16 PM

    A couple of quick corrections: the government of Venezuela isn’t “hostile to America,” just to the assholes who run it. I travel there from time to time and have never noticed one single iota of hostility, and the food is great, too. I don’t doubt that Buddy Bailey is having a fine time down there, as I always do. Yes, Venezuelans I have met used occasionally to ask me what was “wrong” with Bush but unfortunately my explanation of “mere stupidity” never did seem to satisfy them. The list of idiotic mistakes the Bush defenestration made with regard to Venezuela could fill a book the size of War and Wa…heh heh, Peace. One quick example: the “hostile” Chavez came to us back in 2002 asking for parts to repair his air force’s C-130 transports. What he got was a lecture – always a great way to win over a Latino head of state – and a parts embargo, which, of course, drove him right into the arms of Antonov and Mikoyan and a spanking new and lethal Russian-made air force the equivalent of which would have been worth billions to Lockheed and Boeing. But who needs jobs, anyway, right?
    .
    Chavez is a bumptious clown who is also crazy like a fox and whom we could have been quite comfortable with if (a) the drooling imbecile who infected the White House illegally between 2000-2008 and change hadn’t tried to support a bungled coup against him despite his having actually won a landslide popular election – you know, democracy and all that; (b) the drooling imbecile who infected the White House illegally between 2000-2008 hadn’t done everything in his power – fortunately, in this case, seriously hamstrung by his disastrous misadventure in Iraq – to otherwise criticize, subvert and threaten the Venezuelan government, economy and people,(c) if our foreign policy in Latin America weren’t so mindlessly and petulantly driven by our bizarre obsession with the broken down old farts who run Cuba (a policy which the novice currently albeit legally infecting the White House hasn’t yet summoned the cojones to dump), and finally, (d) if the drooling imbecile who infected the White House illegally from 2000-2008 had had even the marginal smarts to realize that a vain strutting macho macho buffoon like Chavez could have been pocketed from the git-go if he had been flattered instead of bullied.

  2. TigerS Boy ToY - Dec 30, 2009 at 1:59 PM

    WTF WHO IN NEW YORK WOULD READ ABOUT ATLANTA BRAVES DOUCHE BAG.

  3. Eulah Goudie - Jan 17, 2010 at 4:10 AM

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  4. Burton Haynes - Jan 29, 2010 at 6:32 PM

    Oh jesus you’ll not belief this. My silly dog just farted on my arm!? I mean what’s the matter with this!? I give food to that thing and I end up with that in exchange. I yet will not really belief this. Anyway, you have got quite a few important facts there in your posting. I knew Yahoo could bring me to a few helpful stuff today :). Alright need to search for that pet now! Have a nice day you all!

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