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Yunel Escobar moving on, maybe learning a bit

Sep 28, 2012, 2:31 PM EDT

Yunel Escobar eye black

Yunel Escobar quietly returned last night.  There’s a story about it in The Globe and Mail.

Interesting tidbits:  (a) a meeting with the head of You Can Play, which promotes equality and respect for athletes of all sexual orientations; and (b) Escobar catching the ceremonial first pitch from David Testo, an openly gay soccer player.

Also of note: comments from a gay college distance runner of Cuba descent who says that, yes, “Tu ere maricone” is offensive, even within a Spanish speaking community, contrasted with comments from Omar Vizquel who says that while you don’t say that stuff to English speakers, it’s not considered offensive in Spanish.  Which … doesn’t exactly match up.

Oh well. I’m guessing that unless Escobar is an absolute idiot, he’s not gonna get caught up in this kind of thing again.

  1. thatyankeedude - Sep 28, 2012 at 2:52 PM

    Well at least Escobar is moving on.

  2. blacksables - Sep 28, 2012 at 2:59 PM

    I’ve longed hoped for a sequel to “The Neverending Story”.

    • RickyB - Sep 28, 2012 at 3:37 PM

      You must have missed it 22 years ago …

      • blacksables - Sep 28, 2012 at 3:39 PM

        I’ve been busy.

  3. Shafer's Dealer - Sep 28, 2012 at 3:18 PM

    Escobar visited the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta back in 2009 shortly after getting benched by Bobby.
    He regained focus and had the best year of his career.
    Yunel needs to get his shit together, and remember what he learned that day…

    “It was an awakening for me,” Escobar said. “From this moment on, I will be more appreciative of the blessings God has given me. My girlfriend has a little boy. From now on, I’m going to look on him even better. From this moment on, I’m open to do whatever needs to be done to shine in other people’s lives and make this a better world for them.”
    “From this day on, I’ll play even harder,” Escobar said. “I met kids that watch the Braves play all the time. From this moment on, they know that they met Yunel Escobar. And I’ll do whatever it takes to not let those kids down so they feel proud of having a friend like me.”

  4. gamecock24 - Sep 28, 2012 at 3:29 PM

    Escobar actually returned earlier this week when the Blue Jays were in Baltimore.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Sep 28, 2012 at 4:01 PM

      I think Craig meant returned to Toronto.

  5. jaysjunkie - Sep 28, 2012 at 3:35 PM

    “I’m guessing that unless Escobar is an absolute idiot, he’s not gonna get caught up in this kind of thing again.”…He is an absolute idiot, so I wouldn’t put it past him.

    Vizquel kills me. Everyone is falling over themselves to acknowledge how much Yunel screwed up and Omar is still shrugging his shoulders saying he doesn’t understand what all the fuss was about.

    • Francisco (FC) - Sep 28, 2012 at 3:52 PM

      See my comment. Vizquel grew up in a much different environment than today. Intellectually he can see that it’s wrong and you won’t catch him doing such a gaffe but he doesn’t feel it and doesn’t think it’s a big deal. In the Caribbean basin it’s still socially acceptable to refer to homosexuals in derogatory form, even though many do not have strong feelings pro or anti.

      Also much of South America is primarily Catholic, so the Church has a vested interest in continuing to paint homosexuals in an unflattering manner.

  6. Francisco (FC) - Sep 28, 2012 at 3:46 PM

    I think we need stop lumping all the Latinos together. Different words will have different connotations depending on the country.

    For example in Mexico, Maricon is nowhere near as offensive as Pendejo, yet in Argentina Pendejo is a term of affection for a child. I can’t confirm but I’ve heard that in Cuba Maricon is much stronger. Vizquel is from Venezuela where it’s a pretty light offensive word among the populace compared to others, that’s because we lop off the ‘n’, so you rarely hear Maricon and instead Marico in everyday discourse.

    Also you need to consider the source; Vizquel is a heterosexual latino who grew up in the 80’s and early 90’s, where Maricon is par for the course in male groups. While Estevez is a gay man of Cuban who descent has grown up in North America and lived through the social changes that have made these expressions unacceptable in public company. Of COURSE they are going to disagree.

    • brazcubas - Sep 28, 2012 at 4:39 PM

      Castro’s regime has been pretty anti-gay from day 1, and while the actual crackdown on and persecution of gays has eased up somewhat, the general atmosphere in Cuba is still significantly homophobic.

      Vizquel is clearly wrong, “maricon” is an insult in all Spanish-speaking countries, it’s just more socially acceptable in most than “faggot” is in the U.S, though that is (very slowly) changing.

    • schlom - Sep 28, 2012 at 4:54 PM

      Damn you for bringing facts into this emotional argument!

  7. blacksables - Sep 28, 2012 at 4:14 PM


  8. natslady - Sep 28, 2012 at 5:08 PM

    I am still waiting for the first gay player feel he can open up (I won’t say “come out”) about his relationship. It really bothered me when a player said he could be an example to others who aren’t “normal” and almost choked. Being gay is normal. He may be a “minority” but he isn’t abnormal.

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