The 2012 major league baseball season isn't even a week old, and yet we already have our first Ozzie Guillen incident.
Yes, Guillen has a history of speaking his mind on issues of both baseball and politics, but it was hard to imagine he'd find a way to antagonize so many members of his own fan base so quickly. Then again, it's Ozzie.
From the Chicago Sun Times:
Two days after saying he gets drunk every night the team’s on the road, Guillen apologized for comments he made in a Time magazine story, in which he’s quoted as saying, “I love Fidel Castro.”
Later in the article, Guillen said, “I respect Fidel Castro. You know why? A lot of people have wanted to kill Fidel Castro for the last 60 years, but that (SOB) is still here.”
Ozzie is now, of course, the manager of the Miami Marlins, who are, of course, located in a market with a large Cuban demographic, many of whom, of course, despise Castro, which was in many cases, of course, the reason they fled Cuba in the first place. It should also be noted that Guillen has lived in Miami for the last 12 years.
Anyway, he apologized to the team's spanish broadcasting crew over the weekend and held a closed door session with the Marlins beat writers to do the same.
“I want to apologize for the things (I said) that hurt somebody’s feelings,” Guillen told reporters. “I want them to know I’m against everything ... the way (Castro has) treated people the last 60 years. I’ve read a lot about him.
The Phillies host the Marlins this week, including in their home-opener today at 1:05, but Guillen will fly back to Miami during the series' off-day on Tuesday to hold a public press conference to address the remarks. Meanwhile, NBCMiami is reporting that a "hard-line, right wing, anti-Castro, anti-communist group," of Cuban-Americans will demonstrate outside the stadium, presumably during the presser.
But that's tomorrow. Today, he's on the road in Philadelphia, so, if we're taking his word for it, he's probably drunk anyway.