What if I told you that one of the most electrifying players in all of the MLB came from a tough upbringing on the island of Cuba? You probably think, yes, I’ve heard this story before…yada, yada, yada…but what I’m about to tell you about Randy Arozarena is worthy of an Oscar-winning movie.
Randy Arozarena was born in the communist country of Cuban on February 28, 1995. He grew up in a baseball family. Having been around the sport all his life, it only makes sense that Arozarena would become the superstar he is today. But he got there; he first had to put the work in.
Growing up in Cuba, Arozarena played baseball. Any chance he could get. But it wasn’t until 2014 that his big break came playing for Vegueros de Pinar del Rio a local club in Cuba. There he batted 291/.412/.419 with three home runs, 24 RBIs, and 15 stolen bases over 74 games. Because of this performance, he eventually got the attention of multiple MLB scouts. However, he still had work to put in.
In 2016, he arrived in Mexico and played for the Tijuana Bulls. It was after just one season that Randy Arozarena was called up to the MLB, signing with the St. Louis Cardinals as an international free agent.
Randy Arozarena debuted for their minor-league system in 2017, known as the Springfield Cardinals in Florida as well as their other minor-league affiliate team, the Palm Beach Cardinals. In his minor-league career, he averaged a 266 batting average with 11 home runs, 49 RBIs, and 18 stolen bases over 121 games for both the Springfield Cardinals, as well as the Palm Beach Cardinals combined.
Then, finally, on August 12, 2019, after having bounced around from teams like the Memphis Red Birds to the Mayos de Navijoa, Randy Arozarena finally got his moment as he was called up to the big leagues. He only lasted one season with the St. Louis Cardinals, and in that season, he averaged .300 on the year.
The year after, he signed with the Tampa Bay Rays, and it was there that his stardom began to rise and continues to rise. In 2020, he was instrumental in helping the Rays make it to the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Randy Arozarena also Broke the season record for the most home runs in a postseason with 10.
I have no doubt that his stock will continue to rise in his budding career. On a personal note, I myself cannot express how proud I am to see a fellow Cuban making his name in one of the world’s biggest leagues. He is certainly making his tiny island beam with pride. I for sure know I am every time he steps up to the plate.
As a person with Cuban roots, I cannot explain how proud it makes me to see that one of us can also make it out of a tough situation if we just persist. It also goes to show you that with hard work, you can achieve anything you set your mind to.
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