Baseball has existed since the Civil War in the mid-1800s. While it started off as a sport that only Americans played, it spread to Latin America in the early 1900s. When Major League Baseball became more organized in 1903, many Latino players joined the league, and its popularity has increased greatly since then.
Roberto Clemente, born in Puerto Rico in 1934, is perhaps the most well-known Latino MLB player. Clemente played 18 seasons as a right fielder for the Pittsburgh Pirates. After his tragic death in 1972, he was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame for his personality and talent on the field. Nowadays, the Roberto Clemente Award is given to the player who “best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual’s contribution to his team.” Clemente’s legacy lives on throughout the MLB..
Rod Carew, born in Panama in 1945, is known as one of the best hitters of his time. Carew played from 1967-1985 on the Minnesota Twins and the California Angels, making appearances in the All-Star Games 18 straight times. He won the American League Most Valuable Player Award in 1977 after he recorded 239 hits. He ended his career with 3,053 hits (27th all-time), and a career batting average of .328 (34th all-time). Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1991, he resides in.
David “Big Papi” Ortiz
David Ortiz, commonly known as “Big Papi,” was born in 1975 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. His career lasted from 1997-2016, with the majority and most well-known part of it spent on the Boston Red Sox team. He was a key part of the 2004 Red Sox team, which ended their 86-year World Series drought. He finished his career with 541 home runs and 1,768 runs batted in, lying in the Top 30 of the MLB for both. While he is not eligible for the Hall of Fame yet, he may be a unanimous, first-ballot inductee.
Miguel Cabera, born in 1983 in Maracay, Venezuela, currently plays for the Detroit Tigers and recently hit his 500th home run. He led the Tigers to the playoffs from 2011-2014 and is often considered to be one of the best players of the 21st century. Since his debut in 2003, he has been a two-time American League Most Valuable Player award winner, a four-time AL batting champion and an 11-time MLB All-Star. He has played at first and third base for most of his major league career, but primarily played left and right field before 2006. He also won the Triple Crown Award in 2012 and may also be a first-ballot Hall of Famer when eligible.