Ken Griffey Jr, Barry Larkin Launch Mission of Baseball Diplomacy in Cuba

HAVANNA, CUBA — Baseball megastars, Ken Griffey Jr & Barry Larkin, arrived in Havana, Cuba as part of a sports-diplomacy program where the main goal is to foster personal ties between citizens of the United States and Cuba, who both share the love of baseball.

Photo shows Ken Griffey Jr. & Barry Larkin speaking to the media about their diplomatic baseball mission in Cuba. Each spoke on Feb. 16, 2014 at a clinic the players put on for Cuban youth

It’s called America’s pastime, but it’s also the sport of choice in Cuba. In the spirit of that common language, both MLB stars launched a mission of baseball diplomacy. Each spoke Sunday, Feb. 16, at a clinic the players put on for Cuban youth where they talked baseball.
Although the United States and Cuba have no formal relationship, Griffey, Jr said baseball could help pave the way for political diplomacy. “You never know, Griffey, Jr. told the media. “Just time will tell. They’re passionate about baseball, we’re passionate about baseball. Hopefully things could happen.”
Larkin said, “Everybody wants to be associated with something positive, and when you’re dealing with baseball, you’re dealing with kids. It’s all about passing on the legacy, passing on the tradition and helping those kids become better. I feel like it’s our responsibility.”
Watch video of Ken Griffey Jr. & Barry Larkin speaking about their mission in Cuba.

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