5 Cuban National Team players you should know about before Tuesday's game in Havana
Watch a historic live look-in on MLB.com beginning shortly before 2 p.m. ET Tuesday of ESPN's coverage of the ceremonies, first pitches, anthems and more, including the start of the game. The remainder of the broadcast will be available on MLB.TV.
The game represents an important step in the easing of tensions between the U.S. and Cuba, but there will also be some awesome baseball to enjoy -- this is, after all, the country that's given us Luis Tiant, Yasiel Puig and so many others. Here are five Cuban players you need to look out for:
Jose Adolis Garcia, OF
The younger brother of Braves third baseman Adonis Garcia, Jose has become a star in the Cuban National Series at just 23 years old. The outfielder slashed .291/.376/.493 last season with 10 homers and six steals -- oh, and he can do stuff like this with the glove:
Yunier Cano, RHP
Speaking of great young players, here's what Cano did in the Cuban National Series in 2015: 6-1, 29 strikeouts, 0.90 ERA -- no, that's not a typo, he allowed just four earned runs in his 40 innings of work. Even more incredible? He did all of that at age 21. Cano boasts a fastball that gets up into the mid-90s, and will be an arm to watch on Tuesday.
Yosvani Alarcon, C
There's not much that Alarcon can't do -- he led the National Series with 16 dingers in 2015, reached base in nearly 47 percent of his at-bats (!) and managed to walk as many times as he struck out just for good measure. His 1.177 OPS was second in the league behind possible future MLBer Yulieski Gourriel, and was more than 140 points clear of the next closest hitter.
Livan Moinelo, LHP
Most 19-year-olds spend their summers applying for internships, working at the movie theater or bugging mom and dad for bumming around the house all the time. Livan Moinelo, on the other hand, spent his appearing in 22 games for Pinar Del Rio, striking out 47 batters in 48 innings and leading the team with a 2.25 ERA and eight saves. He's arguably the best closer in Cuba already, which is a scary thought for everybody else.
Guillermo Aviles, 1B/OF
Avilse has been a star in the making since his teenage years, and he just keeps getting better -- the slender first baseman put together a great season last year, slashing .340/.427/.492 with 12 doubles, four triples and three homers. He's still just 22, and with a swing like this, he'll be making pitchers miserable for a long time: