Getting to know Yasiel

I wanted to make the time to write a little bit about Yasiel Puig the person a bit before I dive into details of the beauty of our trip. The biggest beauty I discovered from day one was the type of human Yasiel is. The type of father, son, friend and overall human he is. I knew nothing of who Yasiel was heading into this trip other then some ball player from Cuba, and in reality I expected a pompous ass that thought the world revolves around him. I knew we would have a wonderful trip regardless because of the experience so I had zero expectations of interactions with this man not remotely thinking we would actually fall in love with the spirit and heart of this special man.

Sometime before Yasiel and the family arrived, the group was having a discussion about Yasiel and his temper and his crazy antics that happen on the field. Oblivious to any of this they encouraged me to google some of his clips and such over the years. Wow...that’s some good shit. If you are not a baseball fan, google this man and you’ll get a kick of his highlights, I know I did and was quite ready to watch this week unravel.

I couldn’t have been more wrong all around on all my expectations and assumptions from his day to day temperament and to who he is as a person. (And we have had some situations that would flush out anyone’s qualities that one may not be proud of) Instantly there were a few things abundantly apparent. His family is special all around. We have gotten to know mom, dad, brother, significant other, best friends, and his kids. Each and everyone of them truly have made an impression on my heart. The energy Yasiel and his two boys have is abundantly clear, I get tired just watching all of them. Yasiel has the best facial expressions that even if you couldn’t hear what he is saying, his face says so much. He has a true love for the people of Cuba, and his “family tribe”. Fortunately we were blessed to experience and get to know this thoughtful, caring, kind, humble, 28 year old man and be in his world for a week and see into this tribe.
Yasiel Puig made the decision to defect from Cuba the country to better himself. (And what a blessing to SO many people far and wide he did!). Yasiel did not defect from the Cuban people. He is the light to many Cuban people and his heart and love for wanting to help them is abundantly obvious from the consistent consideration of how he could help and where he could help. The universe placed this talented 28 year old ball of energy in a country that does not allow him the opportunities of others and thank goodness he made that decision and had the courage to make that journey that only one can imagine anyone having to do.

Anyone who spends time with me becomes aware of some distinct quirks/annoyances of mine, including my own language which often I’m given crap about, or the things daily I personally shake my head and giggle about, and a have found you either LOVE me for and find endearing or can’t stand me. Yasiel immediately picked up on these and was able to cap on me quite quickly which warmed my heart and of course has made for such a fun trip and I “think” Yasiel fell into the found my silly ass and endearing category ?

I truly could go on and on about examples about the type of person behind the scenes this man is because I have been able to observe him in such a variety of ways. I’ve observed arguments (which stinks when not in my language to at least hear what they are fighting about ?), moments with his kids, bombarded by fans, you name the situation presented, and as a 28 year old man whom has accomplished what he has and fought to get where he is thru unimaginable circumstances Yasiel deserves every bit of success he continues to earn.

***Sure, there are many situations anyone on the outside could sit back and criticize or judge on how he may or may not handle himself and I would encourage those who may throw stones at this man to reflect on actions of other 28 year olds. Then I would like them to take a moment and see if they could fathom what it would be like to walk in his shoes along the path he has been forced to take in life over the past 8 years. Add in the obstacles that he has overcome, the amount of wealth he has earned (going from a country where toilet paper and running water isn’t common) THEN add in this is not his native language...come on, if you want to judge this man’s character at this point and talk trash it really shows more about your character than his.

He has made life long fans of Shannon and I, and I’m quite sure I’ll being heading to my first MLB game I have been to in a decade and I can’t wait!

Thank you Yasiel for sharing yourself and your world and so many intimate aspects of your life with us. This trip has forever changed me and I look forward to the next one!


P.S. I have been corrected about Yasiel’s last team. I may have thought he played for the Cleveland Browns...which is football, not baseball. I’m learning!

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