100 Campeones: Latino Groundbreakers Who Paved the Way in Sport

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100 Campeones: Latino Groundbreakers Who Paved the Way in Sport is much more than a group of stories that feature the talents, triumphs, and tempests of the careers of Latinos in sport. It is a book of living history, rich in culture and tradition. It is a collection of firsts, of legends, and of names that will soon become familiar to the world. 100 Campeones is a treasure box of inspiring stories that were, at times, created out of dire hardship and oppression.

Contents

Foreword by Dan Guerrero . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xvii

CHAPTER 1 •

An Introduction:

Latino Grounbreakers Who Paved the Way in Sport 1

by Richard Lapchick

Part One: Professional Sport

 

CHAPTER 2 •

Latinos in Major League Baseball 13

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick

Hall of Famers

José Méndez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Cristóbal Torriente . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Martín Dihigo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Vernon “Lefty” Gómez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

Roberto Clemente . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Luis Aparicio . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

Orlando Cepeda. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

Juan Marichal. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

 

Atanasio “Tony” Pérez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Rodney “Rod” Carew . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57

Star of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

 

Baseball Pioneers

Esteban Bellán. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63

First Latino to Play Professional Baseball in the United States,

by Jared Bovinet

Hiram Bithorn . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65

Puerto Rican Baseball Pioneer, by Richard Lapchick

Roberto “Bobby” Ávila. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67

Mexican Baseball Pioneer, by Jared Bovinet

Luis Tiant. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69

Cuban Baseball Pioneer, by Jared Bovinet

Saturnino “Minnie” Miñoso . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72

First Black Latino Player in MLB, by Horacio Ruiz

Albert Pujols. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77

MLB Superstar and Future Hall of Famer, by Horacio Ruiz

 

Managers

Miguel “Mike” González . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81

First Latino Manager in MLB, by Jared Bovinet

Alfonso “Al” López . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83

First Full-Time Latino Manager in MLB and Hall of Fame

Manager, by Horacio Ruiz

Oswaldo “Ozzie” Guillén . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87

First Latino Manager to Win World Series, by Jared Bovinet

Alejandro “Alex” Pompez. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90

National Baseball Hall of Fame Executive and Pioneer,

by Horacio Ruiz

Omar Minaya . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94

First Latino General Manager in MLB, by Jared Bovinet

 

Administrators

Arturo “Arte” Moreno. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 98

First Latino Majority Owner in MLB, by Horacio Ruiz

 

CHAPTER 3 •

Latinos in the NBA 103

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick

Alfonso “Al” Cueto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 107

First Latino to be Drafted by NBA Team, by Chris Kamke
Alfred “Butch” Lee . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109

First Latino Player in the NBA, by Chris Kamke

Rolando Blackman . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113

First Latino to Have Jersey Number Retired by NBA Team,

by Chris Kamke

Mark Aguirre. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117

First Latino to be NBAs First Overall Draft Pick, by Chris Kamke

Emanuel “Manu” Ginóbili . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120

Superstar of the NBA, by Chris Kamke

 

CHAPTER 4 •

Latinos in the NFL 125

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick

Ignacio “Lou” Molinet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 131

First Latino to Play in the NFL, by Chris Kamke

Steve Van Buren . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 133

Star of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Thomas “Tom” Fears . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 137

Star of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and First Latino Head Coach in the NFL, by Chris Kamke

Theodore “Ted” Hendricks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 140

Star of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Anthony Muñoz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 144

Star of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

Thomas “Tom” Flores. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 147

First Latino Head Coach to Win a Super Bowl, by Chris Kamke

Jim Plunkett. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 150

First Latino Quarterback to Win a Super Bowl, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Tony González . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 153

Superstar of the NFL and Future Hall of Famer, by Chris Kamke

 

CHAPTER 5 •

Latinos in Golf 157

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick

Roberto De Vicenzo. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 160

Star of the World Golf Hall of Fame, by Charlie Harless

Juan “Chi Chi” Rodríguez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 163

Star of the World Golf Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Lee Treviño . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 166

Star of the World Golf Hall of Fame, by Charlie Harless

Nancy López. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 170

Star of the World Golf Hall of Fame, by Charlie Harless

Lorena Ochoa. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 174

Future Star of the World Golf Hall of Fame, by Charlie Harless

 

CHAPTER 6 •

Latinos in Tennis 179

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick

Francisco “Pancho” Segura. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 184

Star of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Ricardo “Pancho” González . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 187

Star of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

María Bueno . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 190

Star of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Alejandro “Alex” Olmedo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 193

Star of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Rafael Osuna. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 195

Star of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Rosemary “Rosy” Casals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 197

Star of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, by Cara-LynnLopresti

Guillermo Vilas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 201

Star of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, by Charlie Harless

Gabriela Sabatini. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 204

Star of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Beatriz “Gigi” Fernández . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 207

Grand Slam Women’s Doubles Champion and Olympic Gold

Medalist, by Charlie Harless

Mary Joe Fernández . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 211

Grand Slam Women’s Doubles Champion and Olympic Gold

Medalist, by Charlie Harless

Marcelo Ríos. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 215

First Latino to be Ranked Number One in the ATP Tour, by Charlie Harless

 

CHAPTER 7 •

Latinos in Boxing 219

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick

“Panama” Alfonso “Al” Brown . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 223

First Latino World Boxing Champion and Star of the International

Boxing Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Gerardo “Kid Gavilán” González . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 228

Star of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz
Éder Jofre . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 232

Star of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

José “Mantequilla” Nápoles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 235

Star of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Rubén Olivares . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 238

Star of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

Roberto Durán. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 242

Star of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

Alexis Argüello . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 246

Star of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, by Chris Kamke

Salvador Sánchez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 251

Star of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Julio César Chávez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 255

Star of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, by Charlie Harless

Oscar De La Hoya . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 259

Future Hall of Famer, by Chris Kamke

 

CHAPTER 8 •

Latinos in Major League Soccer

and Professional American Soccer 263

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick

Hugo Pérez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 267

Star of the National Soccer Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Tabaré “Tab” Ramos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 270

Star of the National Soccer Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Marcelo Balboa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 273

Star of the National Soccer Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Claudio Reyna. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 276

Future Star of the National Soccer Hall of Fame, by Jared Bovinet

Douglas “Doug” Logan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 279

First Latino Commissioner of Any Major American Sports League,

by Jared Bovinet

 

CHAPTER 9 •

Latinos and Horse Racing 283

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick

Manuel Ycaza. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 287

Star of the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Avelino Gómez. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 292

Star of the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz
Braulio Baeza . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 296

Star of the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame,by Horacio Ruiz

Ángel Cordero, Jr. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 301

Star of the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

Laffit Pincay, Jr.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 304

Star of the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, by Horacio Ruiz

 

CHAPTER 10 •

Latinos in the NHL and NASCAR 309

Latino Players in the NHL, by Richard Lapchick 309

Latinos in NASCAR, by Richard Lapchick 312

Part Two: College Sport

Introduction, by Richard Lapchick 327

 

CHAPTER 11 •

Latino Student-Athletes 327

Tony Casillas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 327

Star of the College Football Hall of Fame, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Brenda Villa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 331

Water Polo All-American and U.S. National Team Captain,by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Lisa Fernández . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 335

College Softball and U.S. National Team Legend, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Eduardo Nájera . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 338

Chip Hilton Player of the Year Presented by the Naismith Memorial

Basketball Hall of Fame, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Jessica Mendoza . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 342

College Softball All-American and U.S. National Team Member, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Stephanie Cox, formerly Stephanie López . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 345

College Soccer All-American and First Latina to Play on United

States Women’s Soccer National Team, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Amy Rodríguez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 349

College Soccer All-American and U.S. National Team Member, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

 

CHAPTER 12 •

Latino Coaches in College Sport 353

August “Augie” Garrido . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 353

College Baseball Groundbreaker, by Jared Bovinet

Joseph “Joe” Kapp. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 357

First Latino Football Coach at Division I-A Program,by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Barry Álvarez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 362

College Football Groundbreaker, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Leticia Pineda-Boutté . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 366

College Softball Groundbreaker, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Mario Cristóbal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 370

First Cuban-American Football Coach at Division I-A Program, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

 

CHAPTER 13 •

Latino Administrators in College Sport 375

Dan Guerrero. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 375

Groundbreaking Athletic Director, by Charlie Harless

Rudy Dávalos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 380

Groundbreaking Athletic Director, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Irma García . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 385

First Latina Athletic Director at Division I School,by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Rick Villarreal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 389

Groundbreaking Athletic Director, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Pete García . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 393

Groundbreaking Athletic Director, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

 

Part Three: International Sport

The Olympics and Latino Superstars

on the International Stage 399

by Richard Lapchick

 

CHAPTER 14 •

Summer Olympics 411

Ramón Fonst . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 411

First Latino to Win Gold Medal at Summer Olympics,by Charlie Harless

Joseph “Joe” Salas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 413

First Latino-American to Compete in Summer Olympics,by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Joaquín Capilla . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 416

Summer Olympic Gold Medalist, by Charlie Harless

Teófilo Stevenson . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 419

Summer Olympic Gold Medalist, by Charlie Harless

Alberto Juantorena. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 423

Summer Olympic Gold Medalist, by Charlie Harless

María Colón . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 426

First Latina To Win Gold Medal in Summer Olympics,by Jared Bovinet

Tracie Ruiz-Conforto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 428

Summer Olympic Gold Medalist, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Pablo Morales . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 431

Summer Olympic Gold Medalist, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Félix Savón . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 435

Summer Olympic Gold Medalist, by Charlie Harless

Trent Dimas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 439

Summer Olympic Gold Medalist, by Charlie Harless

Claudia Poll . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 443

First Central American Woman to Win an Olympic Gold Medal, by Jared Bovinet

Steven López . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 445

Summer Olympic Gold Medalist, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Irving Saladino. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 448

First Central American Man to Win Olympic Gold Medal, by Jared Bovinet

2004 Argentina Men’s National Basketball Team . . . . . . . . . . . . 450

First Latin American Country to Win Olympic Gold Medal in Basketball

Alberto Salazar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 453

American Marathon Star, by Charlie Harless

 

CHAPTER 15 •

Winter Olympics 457

Jennifer Rodríguez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 457

First Latina-American to Win Winter Olympics Medal, by Cara-Lynn Lopresti

Derek Parra . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 460

First Latino-American to Win Winter Olympics Gold Medal, by Jared Bovinet

CHAPTER 16 •

Latino International Superstars in Sports 465

Edson Arantes “Pelé” do Nascimento . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 465

International Soccer Superstar, by Chris Kamke

Alfredo di Stéfano. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 470

International Soccer Superstar, by Charlie Harless

Manuel “Garrincha” dos Santos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 474

International Soccer Superstar, by Charlie Harless

Hugo Sánchez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 478

International Soccer Superstar, by Charlie Harless

Diego Maradona . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 482

International Soccer Superstar, by Charlie Harless

José Chilavert . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 486

International Soccer Superstar, by Charlie Harless

Ana Fidelia Quirot . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 490

International Track Superstar, by Horacio Ruiz

Ana Guevara . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 494

International Track Superstar, by Horacio Ruiz

Juan Manuel Fangio . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 498

International Formula One Superstar, by Horacio Ruiz

Ayrton Senna . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 502

International Formula One Superstar, by Horacio Ruiz

 

CHAPTER 17 •

Conclusion/Epilogue

Future of Latinos in Sport 509

by Richard Lapchick

About the National Consortium

for Academics and Sports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 517

About the Authors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 523