Cuban TV Airs First American Major League Baseball Game in 52 Years

Something happened in Cuba this past Sunday that hadn't occurred since before the Cuban missile crisis.

For the first time in 52 years, a complete American Major League Baseball game was aired on the state-controlled television.

Unfortunately, according to the Associated Press, the game was a rerun of a May 2 contest between the Washington Nationals and the Atlanta Braves.

Making matters worse, no Cuban-born players appeared in the game. As a result, Cubans weren't all that enamored.

“It’s interesting to see how they play, but I can’t say it thrilled me all that much because I don’t know any of the players,” Diego Sierra, 67, told AP. “I would really like to see the Cubans, see how they are developing in that league, really see how well they are doing.”

Baseball fans in the states know that many of MLB's top players are of Cuban descent.

These include Bronson Arroyo and fireballer Aroldis Chapman of the Cincinnati Reds, Alex Avila of the Detroit Tigers, Yoenis Cespedes of the Oakland Athletics, Jose Contreras of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Matt Dominguez of the Houston Astros, Raul Ibañez of the Seattle Mariners, Jose Iglesias of the Boston Red Sox, and of course the new rookie phenom Yasiel Puig of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

With none of these in the game aired Sunday, Cubans were less than mesmerized.

“I watched this game for about 45 minutes and didn’t think much of it,” Margarita Roman, a 46-year-old devotee of Havana’s powerhouse team, Industriales, told the AP. “Besides, there weren’t any Cubans. That’s what interests us.”

Something that would interest American viewers: the game was shown without the commercial breaks between innings.

As such, the broadcast lasted only 90 minutes.

Sounds like a dream, doesn't it?

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Noel Sheppard's picture