The Ottumwa Courier

AP Sports

July 18, 2013

Cuban ballplayer tells newspaper he is defecting

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Cuban pitcher Misael Siverio told a Spanish-language newspaper he has defected to the United States and is going to try to make it to the major leagues.

Siverio was part of the Cuban national team that traveled to Iowa for an exhibition game against a collegiate all-star team from the U.S. But he apparently left the delegation at some point after it arrived in Des Moines on Tuesday afternoon.

"Leaving behind your country is not easy, but this was a decision that I gave a lot of thought," Siverio told El Nuevo Herald in Miami. "Of course, my dream is to play in the majors, and from now on I will start taking the first steps to make it happen."

Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida also welcomed the 24-year-old Siverio to the U.S. in a post on her Twitter account on Wednesday. A message was left by The Associated Press seeking comment from the Cuban-American Republican.

Siverio was not listed when Team USA released an updated roster for Cuba on Wednesday. Team USA CEO Paul Seiler told the AP that, from Cuba's perspective, Siverio is no longer a member of their delegation.

Seiler and Antonio Becali, the head of the Cuban delegation, declined further comment.

The Cubans are in Iowa to play a team of American college stars in the opener of a five-game set spanning three cities. The set starts Thursday night in Des Moines at the home of the Triple-A Iowa Cubs, marking the first extended series between the two countries in American ballparks since 1996.

Siverio is the latest in a long line of Cuban players who defected to the U.S. Now he hopes to follow in the footsteps of a group of major leaguers who are playing prominent roles for contending teams.

Text Only
AP Sports
  • Ricketts: Cubs not interested in move to suburbs NEW YORK (AP) — Chicago Cubs owner Tom Ricketts thinks a move to the suburbs might be lucrative but says his team remains committed to refurbishing century-old Wrigley Field. The Cubs won approval from Chicago's City Council last July for a $500 mill

    April 16, 2014

  • Cardinals Brewers Baseball-6 [Duplicate] Cards pitching shuts down Brewers again 6-1 MILWAUKEE (AP) — Cardinals starters are feeling right at home on the mound at Miller Park. A night after Lance Lynn shutout the Brewers, fellow hard-throwing right-hander Shelby Miller followed Tuesday by striking out seven and allowing three hits ov

    April 16, 2014 5 Photos

  • NL Capsules CINCINNATI (AP) — Mike Leake doubled and hit a two-run homer Tuesday night, ending Gerrit Cole's winning streak and leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 7-5 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates that completed two days full of homers and delays. First, the

    April 16, 2014

  • Boston police safely blow up suspicious backpacks BOSTON (AP) — Survivors, first responders and relatives of those killed in the Boston Marathon bombing marked the anniversary Tuesday with tributes that combined sorrow over the loss of innocent victims with pride over the city's resilience in the fa

    April 16, 2014

  • Gay rights group sends petition to IOC LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — More than 100,000 members of an international gay rights group have sent messages to the IOC urging changes to ensure that future Olympic host countries do not have discriminatory laws on their books. The group All Out re

    April 16, 2014

  • AL Capsules ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Prince Fielder and Kevin Kouzmanoff hit back-to-back homers, Robbie Ross limited Seattle to five singles in seven-plus innings and the Texas Rangers beat the Mariners 5-0 Tuesday night. Fielder ended a 13-game homerless streak

    April 16, 2014

  • $1.9M Special Olympics facility planned in SD SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Special Olympics South Dakota has launched a $1.9 million campaign to raise money for a training facility in Sioux Falls that would give athletes a place to practice without having to compete for gym time with other sports gr

    April 16, 2014

  • NL Capsules MILWAUKEE (AP) — The Milwaukee Brewers' nine-game winning streak was snapped Monday night when Lance Lynn struck out 11 in seven innings and Jon Jay hit a three-run homer for the St. Louis Cardinals in a 4-0 victory. Lynn allowed three hits over seve

    April 15, 2014

  • Cardinals Brewers Baseball-6 [Duplicate] Brewers' 9-game win streak halted by Cards, Lynn MILWAUKEE (AP) — A familiar foil brought the Brewers' nine-game winning streak to an end. Cardinals righty Lance Lynn continued his mastery of Milwaukee after striking out 11 in seven innings and Jon Jay hit a three-run homer to give St. Louis a 4-0

    April 15, 2014 6 Photos

  • Phelps Comeback Swimming [Duplicate] Olympic great Michael Phelps to swim again Don't expect the same Michael Phelps in his return to swimming after a nearly two-year retirement. Even if Phelps' comeback is a success, it will be different this time around. No more swimming seven or eight events at the Olympics or world champions

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National