Young Cuban baseball players dream of U.S. major leagues

STORY: These Cuban baseball players dream of joining the U.S. major leagues

Locator: Havana, Cuba

(Leoni Venego, 7-year-old baseball player) “I want to be like Yuli Gurriel because he’s good and plays as first baseman, like me.”

Baseball is Cuba’s national past time, but talented players are leaving for more opportunities abroad

It mirrors a broader exodus of Cubans from the stagnating communist-run island

racked by social and economic crisis

(Francis Romero, Baseball expert) “I think many factors have contributed to today’s Cuban baseball decline. First and foremost, the key one, has been the exodus. In the past six years the number of baseball players that have left the country has also tripled compared with the decade between 2000 and 2010.”