Cuba’s passion for baseball is immense, but it has its boundaries. Ingenuity in the face of lacking equipment is what propelled many players to become the best. Nothing could hold Cuban kids back from developing the skills even if they had to play unique versions of the game. Equipment is easier to obtain today but might actually create a scenario where only those who have it are playing. Hardball once had little competition for eyeballs and participants. Screen time and international soccer are putting pressure on love for the game. Every visit I try to find sandlot baseball to photograph. It isn’t as easy as I thought it would be at first. But, thanks to my Cuban friends I have been able to capture the next generation of peloteros on the island. Take a photographic look at Little League Baseball in Havana Cuba.
I asked my friend Frank Camilo Morejón the catcher for Industriales of Havana if we could visit a local field to capture photos of youngsters playing baseball. I and the kids were in for a treat. Frank brought me to a field in East Havana and proceeded to act as a guest instructor for close to two hours. He worked with all of the kids but provided tailored instruction to the players brave enough to strap on the catchers pads.
Frank is considered one of the best defensive Cuban catchers of this century. He hopes to pursue sports medicine and help to train more young athletes when his playing days are done. On this beautiful December day some of Havana’s best Little League players got a chance to learn from the best. Keeping pre-teen kids on task is no easy chore but these youngsters absorbed every bit of wisdom Frank imparted.
Although scarcity is always a concern in Cuba, gloves, baseballs and bats aren’t the real concern. Frank suggested that batting tees and resistance training bands are in particular need to help out Little League Baseball in Havana Cuba. The tees would obviously allow kids to work on bat path and train in smaller groups or alone. The training bands also would be of use for solo training and help most specifically with building arm strength.
I also captured video of Frank’s interactions with the kids. check out this shot piece of one of Cuba’s best catchers working with Cuba’s next generation of Catchers.